BOOKS BY & THE LIFE OF
HATHOR PUBLISHING UK
"A cinematic Vision flash frozen into language, The Risen redefines the occult novel as some-thing millennial, apocalyptic, unafraid to speak of sex or drugs or the extremities of reason that are central to the magical experience."
Peter Whitehead Obituary - The Guardian by Adam Sweeting
One of Britain’s most provocative film-makers whose work documented the counterculture of the 1960s
Peter Whitehead, who has died aged 82, could justifiably claim to be one of Britain’s most distinctive and provocative film-makers. His film about the Rolling Stones, Charlie Is My Darling (1966), was a pioneering portrait of the group amid the whirlwind of fan mania, its on-the-road intimacy a precursor of Donn Pennebaker’s Bob Dylan film Don’t Look Back and a blueprint for countless future music documentaries.
In Tonite Let’s All Make Love in London (1967), Whitehead created what for many critics was the definitive document of swinging London, a white-hot crucible of music, fashion and film. The many short music films Whitehead made in the 1960s foreshadowed the era of the video promo clip that blossomed in the MTV era of the 80s.
But by the time he made The Fall (1969), arguably his masterpiece, the intellectually restless Whitehead had moved beyond being merely an onlooker recording events with his camera and was pursuing his own inner journey through a period of violent social and political change.
His most intensely creative period began in 1965, when he filmed the International Poetry Incarnation – a gathering of beat poets, including Allen Ginsberg and Lawrence Ferlinghetti – at the Royal Albert Hall in London, to make the 33-minute documentary Wholly Communion.
Word of this reached the Rolling Stones manager Andrew Loog Oldham...
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NEWS / EVENTS
FILM / THEATRE
50th ANNIVERSARY SCREENING THE FALL @ The Institute of Contemporary Arts.
"One of Britain's most provocative and idiosyncratic filmmakers, Peter Whitehead (1937-2019) created a body of work which shocked, entertained and infuriated audiences in equal measure.
To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Whitehead's The Fall (1969), the ICA Cinema screens a new digital restoration of the film alongside Whitehead's Tonite Let's all Make Love in London (1967), accompanied by panel discussions reflecting on the British director's legacy."
ICA: Nov - Dec 2019
MY GENERATION FILM FESTIVAL with Michael Caine
"As co-curator of the Peter Whitehead Archive at DMU I went to see the extraordinary archive film festival that is Michael Caine's 'My Generation' documentary. During the Q&A, I was delighted to hear the director, David Batty, giving a huge shout-out to Peter Whitehead as a seminal film-maker of the 1960s, and stressing the importance of his 'Tonite Let's All Make Love in London' and its unseen rushes for 'My Generation'. It was a great tribute to the archive which is now with the CATH Centre, Contemporary Films and the BFI. Yesterday's Q&A is not yet on Youtube, but here is what Batty said about Peter in a Q&A at the London Film Festival (4mins to 5mins in). "
Steve Chibnall - Cinema and Television History (CATH) Research Centre
De Montford University.
SUMMER OF LOVE REVISITED at The Royal Albert Hall
The iconic venue is holding a season of performances, screening, talks and events called Summer of Love: Revisited, marking 50 years since the 1967 apex of the ‘hippie’ movement.
A key part of the season will be four special events in the Hall’s Elgar Room celebrating the work of subversive filmmaker Peter Whitehead, who made some of the most vivid, intoxicating and important music documentaries of the period.
Mon 1 May, 8pm Tonite Let's All Make Love in London + Post Film Discussion
Tues 2 May, 8pm Pink Floyd '66-'67, hosted by Joe Boyd
Sun 7 May, 1:30pm Wholly Communion
Sat 27 May, 1:30pm Icons at the Hall
Monday 1st May marks a special evening which will celebrate the Blu-Ray launch of the new HD restoration of Whitehead’s 1967 feature Tonite Lets All Make Love in London, followed by a post film discussion.
THE FALL : ALBERTA DIARIES SCREENPLAY & DOSSIER
Peter Whitehead and Alberta Tiburzi Diaries.
Alberta: Northport, Long Island. 24th December 1967: 'I am beginning to write a diary... Will it be serious? I don't know, but i just feel the need to write about Peter and the things I am now living...'
Peter: Hotel de Nice, Paris. Saturday 27th January: "What are you thinking?' I ask her, remembering this is Godard's biggest discovery, this single phrase..."
"Peter Whitehead's difficult and disturbing 1969 masterpiece The Fall is a fiercely political and, by now, a richly historical film... With a suffocating compression, The Fall traces the narrative arc from 'Protest to resistance to revolution" Jeremey Varon, 'Politics, Representation and Permanence.'
(Framework, Volume 52 No1, Spring 2011).
THE FALL SCREENPLAY & DOSSIER
The Fall - The Film:
"Considered by Whitehead to be his most important film, The Fall is an extraordinary piece of filmmaking, an extremely personal statement on violence, revolution and the turbulence within late sixties America. Filmed entirely in and around New York between October 1967 and June 1968, it features Robert Kennedy, The Bread and Puppet Theater, Paul Auster (fresh-faced as a Columbia student), Tom Hayden, Mark Rudd, Stokely Carmichael...
...Richard Roud, co-director of the New York Film Festival wrote of the film, “…an attempt to come to grips with today, both in terms of its content as well as of its form.” HARVARD FILM
The Screenplay & Dossier:
Post production shooting script with Dialogue Reference.
Edited by Peter Whitehead and Jenny Spires.
Featuring an Introductory eassay by Jeremy Varon.
TONITE LETS ALL MAKE LOVE IN LONDON
" Novel as History, History as novel. Film-maker and artist without portfolio, Peter Whitehead centres a tale of espionage and illumination on the Beat Poetry Incarnation at the Albert Hall in June 1965."
“Tonite...” deals with nearly everything, including the
infiltration and takeover of nascent Brit counter-culture by the American intelligence services. Interchangeable and self-replicating... "
"The narrative swaps energetically between notes, tapes, film and slash-punctuated stream-
of-consciousness musings... fractured consciousness or a statement about society’s schizophrenic nature... Can a blind owl fly by insight? "
TIME OUT MAGAZINE
NATIONAL MEDIA MUSEUM. BRADFORD 15TH INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL 2009
PETER WHITEHEAD RECEIVED THE 2009 FELLOWSHIP AWARD."PETER WHITEHEAD; The WORD and the IMAGE"
The British film director Peter Whitehead was given a retrospective at the 2009 Bradford Film Festival. He was also awarded the festival fellowship. Whitehead’s films including Tonite Let’s All Make Love in London (1967), The Fall (1969) and Daddy (1972) were screened alongside the premiere of a new documentary about Whitehead By Any Old Light by Dyonisos Andronis. The retrospective was curated by Mark Goodall from the CCM group.