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    Citizen Kane Herman Mankiewicz Victorville memo on screenplay 1st page requesting "sexy steno and 12 bottles good scotch". (RKO Pictures, 1941) Vintage original typed draft script page on 8.5 x 11 in. RKO Studios 3-hole punch paper hand annotated and signed by screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz, "Mankey". Undated. Handwritten at the top right corner, "my comments Victorville, 1940". For the scene: "Fade In, 1 Ext. Xanadu-Faint Dawn-1940 (Miniature) Window, very small in the distance illuminated. All around this is almost totally black screen. Now as the camera moves slowly towards this window, which is almost a postage stamp in the frame, other forms appear; cyclone fencing, barbed wire, and now looming up against an early morning sky, enormous iron grillwork. Camera travels up to 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, the great castle a silhouette at its summit, the little window a distant accent in the darkness. Dissolve" Significant to the story surrounding the writing of Citizen Kane. Ever since he had entered the inner circle of William Randolph Hearst, socializing at parties held at the newspaper mogul's San Simeon estate, Mankiewicz had wanted to write a script about such a character. In March of 1940, 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. As if to punctuate Welles concerns over Mankiewicz's notorious alcoholism, Mankiewicz himself has handwritten below the typed scene setup, "12. Bottles good Scotch, 4. B. Seltzer Water, 1. Box legal pads, Rem Std 12 ['Remington Standard No. 12' typrewriter], and a sexy steno, Manky". At one time there was a dispute over who would be credited with writing the screenplay when Welles began promoting himself as a one-man show - writer, director and actor. But Mankiewicz, who many historians assert wrote the bulk of the script, prevailed. The ultimate script opening is virtually unchanged from this document draft and connects Mankiewicz to the earliest involvement and a profound influence on the screenplay for this iconic film, which would earn him his one and only Academy Award. In vintage very good condition.

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    Auction Dates
    September, 2015
    29th Tuesday
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