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    "American" working title for Citizen Kane Orson Welles' personal typed manuscript first rough draft by Herman Mankiewicz. (RKO Pictures, 1941) Vintage original typed 267-page First Rough Draft by Orson Welles and Herman J. Mankiewicz of "American" which would become one of the greatest films in the history of the cinema, Citizen Kane. In March of 1940, Orson Welles sent Mankiewicz and close friend John Houseman (tasked with making sure Mankiewicz wrote rather than getting drunk) to Mrs. Campbell's Guest Ranch retreat in Victorville, California some 60 miles outside of Los Angeles to write the first drafts of Citizen Kane, with a 300-page draft script of dialogue and camera instructions by Welles as a starting point. In an article titled "Scripts of Citizen Kane" by Robert Carringer, the author makes mention of the draft offered here, "Mankiewicz's April 16, 1940 draft clocks in at approximately 250 pages but exhibits huge gaps in continuity..." This draft differs from the produced screenplay in some subtle and some more extreme ways. In the example of the opening, it is written, "FADE IN - A VAST GATEWAY OF GRILLED IRON (in the middle of which is clearly seen a huge initial "K") stretching clear across the road. As the CAMERA MOVES towards it, the gate opens and the CAMERA PASSES through. A few feet further on, the gate having closed behind it, the CAMERA REVEALS, either because it has reached the top of a small incline or because it has turned a bend, (depending upon the topography to be selected)..." As compared to the ultimate shooting script, which opens with, "FADE IN: EXT. XANADU - FAINT DAWN - 1940 (MINIATURE) Window, very small in the distance, illuminated. All around this is an almost totally black screen. Now, as the camera moves slowly towards the window which is almost a postage stamp in the frame, other forms appear; barbed wire, cyclone fencing, and now, looming up against an early morning sky, enormous iron grille work. Camera travels up what is now shown to be a gateway of gigantic proportions and holds on the top of it - a huge initial "K" showing darker and darker against the dawn sky. Through this and beyond we see the fairy-tale mountaintop of Xanadu..." This 267-page rough draft, dated April 16, 1940, is the earliest known existing draft of Citizen Kane in private hands. Presented in a vintage board bound black folder. Exhibiting only minor toning to edges. In overall, vintage very good to fine condition.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2015
    29th Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
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