RARA-AVIS: RE: Lounge Music and Sinatra movie

From: Dick Lochte ( dlochte@home.com)
Date: 20 Sep 2001

Andrew wrote:

"I am, however, of the opinion that "Man With A Golden Arm" was in no need of a cover version."

Amen. Ditto the Peter Gunn theme, the James Bond theme, etc. etc. Because of comments on the list I checked out several Barry Adamson cuts and can't see much there. The ideas are sort of interesting, but sampling or rearranging or whatever he's doing to the original music strikes me as tampering, not creating. It's like colorization or remaking "Psycho." The remix of the Peter Gunn theme with the Police's Every Breath You Take (I heard it on The Sopranos, but it's probably on an album) is the best example of this sort of thing I've come across, but I don't think it can compare with the originals.

Colin wrote:

"There may be a better, more definitive account of The Manchurian Candidate's history out there than what I've been able to find web-searching."

I've not much to add about who shelved the movie, except to say that, in an interview I had with Axelrod a while back, he said Sinatra did it because of the Kennedy assassination. This emotional (patriotic?) motive seems to fit the way the singer-actor operated. If a future payoff had been his plan, he probably would have husbanded other productions like
"Johnny Concho" or the Rat Pack clinkers like "Ocean's Eleven."
"Candidate" was re-released, according to his daughter Tina's memoir, not because of some master plan but because a new business manager discovered it among Sinatra's holdings.

Off that subject a bit, Axelrod mentioned a vignette that took place when the movie's contracts were being signed. By then, the folder was several inches thick, a testament to the months of haggling, wheeling and dealing that had brought all the parties and their lawyers to that moment. Everybody was worn down. According to Axelrod, Sinatra signed his name and they'd all started to relax when his (Axelrod's) agent, the legendary Irving Paul "Swifty" Lazaar, jumped up and said he refused to allow the writer to sign. Axelrod was astounded. Why not? Wasn't he getting everything he wanted? Yes, Lazaar replied, but HE wanted something extra for himself. What do you want, Swifty? Sinatra asked. The agent said $25,000. Sinatra looked at the towering contacts and rather than go through another revision, shrugged and wrote out a personal check.

Dick Lochte

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