Orson Welles Discusses Citizen Kane In 1960

With the news that Anthony Hopkins has joined the upcoming Transformers: The Last Knight, some fans have suggested the actor may voice Unicron, the fabled Transformer planet from the 1986 animated movie. In that appearance, he was voiced by writer/actor/director Orson Welles shortly before his death.

But Welles is also famous for Citizen Kane, a film about a publishing magnate with some similarities to William Randolph Hearst. Hearst tried to ban the picture, but his effort failed. Since the inception of the American Film Institute‘s list of best American films, Kane has held the top spot. While some may debate that accolade, listening to Welles talk about it is a special treat, as seen in this BBC interview from 1960 (via Indiewire):

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oQYazeJA-Oo[/youtube]

In the interview, he discusses the Hearst comparison, the freedom with which he worked at the time and the USSR’s decision to ban the picture outright. He also talks about how he lost control of his subsequent film, The Magnificent Ambersons, and other films he made later. But perhaps the best thing about the video is seeing an energetic Welles, cigar in hand, talking about filmmaking in a way that seems fresh despite answering these questions hundreds of times.