Re: RARA-AVIS: Help Finding Stories

From: Jim Beaver (
Date: 19 Jan 2000

> What a coincidence: I just finished the book last night. It doesn't have
> the same border elements, although Mitch Holt (who doesn't appear in the
> film) has a Mexican wife. Welles (but not Paul Monash - I think Welles
> rewrote the screenplay with a very heavy hand) changed the nationalities
> of the main characters: Holt became a Mexican Vargas and Holt's Mexican
> Wife became a WASP Janet Leigh. Welles changed much.

But Heston as Vargas and Leigh as the WASP wife were in place when Welles came aboard as director. Until Heston used his influence as star of the film, Welles was merely another actor in it, with no say over the casting or the script. Heston got him the directing job. So it seems that Welles's participation in the writing of the script must have come AFTER the nationalities were switched.

Jim Beaver

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