I have always loved theatre and film, and while living in Manhattan I went to the movies two or three times a week. Not necessarily the highest qualifications for a film reviewer, but still I approached the arts editor at the Santa Fe Reporter. He auditioned me by asking me to write a review of Prince of the City, which had just arrived. I liked the film, wrote 800 words about it, passed the audition and then wrote about films for a couple of years. One of the highlights of the gig was the annual arrival of the Santa Fe Film Festival, whose short run coincided with my own. I covered the 1982 festival, titled Music and the Movies, and The Spirit of Zoetrope in 1983.
With all the celebrities kicking around at these festivals, my biggest thrill was meeting the indefinable musician Tom Waits in 1983. We chatted at the opening reception, but he declined to be interviewed for a story. Referring to Coppola, he said, “This event is to honor Francis. I’m not here to take any attention away from him.” Truly an honorable man.
Francis Ford Coppola and Robert Duvall at a panel discussion in 1983.
Two rebels, Kenneth Anger (left) and Dennis Hopper at Santa Fe Film Festival in 1983.