One would be shocked to discover how many classic films have gotten lost in time, having been briefly presented to the world only to never be seen or found again. Even more shocking are some of the larger-than-life movie concepts that the film industry of yesteryear would come up with (“King Kong Appears in Ido,” for instance) that unfortunately didn’t manage to make the historic imprint that many other classics have. Fortunately, the UNCSA School of Filmmaking has obtained a truck load full of film prints and dedicated itself to restoring and screening as many as they can, including the long-lost musical version of “Othello” entitled “Santa Fe Satan” that will be screened at this year’s RiverRun International Film Festival, according to Camel City Dispatch.
“Santa Fe Satan” (originally entitled “Catch My Soul”) had a difficult production, with the creator Jack Good adapting the original stage version for film and recruiting “The Prisoner” actor Patrick McGoohan to direct, with legendary cinematographer Conrad Hall (“In Cold Blood,” “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” “American Beauty”) shooting the project, which starred Richie Havens. Unfortunately, the amount of talent behind the movie didn’t make for a big commercial blockbuster, dooming the film to obscurity and eventual oblivion — until now.
David Spencer, the senior curator at the UNCSA School of Filmmaking, has managed to find the lost film print in fairly good condition after nearly three decades. The presumed loss of “Santa Fe Satan” has sparked some hope and inspiration in the film community. The film and recent discovery will therefore be celebrated at RiverRun, which will take place in Winston-Salem from April 4-13.