Thursday 21 January 1999
Before pleading with us not to ask him about his brother David's The Life of Birds, Lord Attenborough told us that, among other aims, Millennium Movies will let film-makers around the world know what the UK really wants to see at the cinema.
A few minutes later, Bazzer hinted that the results might not exactly cheer up aspiring auteurs. Star Wars, he guessed, will probably come out on top, with Citizen Kane unlikely to make the top 50.
Still, Sky Premier did its best to disguise the fact that Millennium Movies wants to turn the British public into one enormous focus group by announcing its donation of pounds 250,000 to Rada, of which Lord Attenborough is, of course, currently the president.
AS IS customary, a couple of anecdotes sped the morning along, the best of which came from Lord Attenborough's 57-year film career.
He remembered a particularly arduous series of water-tank scenes during the shoot of his first film, In Which We Serve. While everyone else, including himself, slipped into the filthy water with great reluctance, Noel Coward presented himself immaculately at the water's edge and executed a perfect belly-flop into the tank.
"Darlings," he remarked as he surfaced, "there's dysentery in every ripple."
OH, WHAT are Dicky's three favourite films? Charlie Chaplin's The Gold Rush, On the Waterfront and Schindler's List. The Godfather, said Barry, followed by Bringing Up Baby and Citizen Kane, "though my favourite films change every day".
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