Peter Whitehead

I’ve become completely obsessed with British filmmaker Peter Whitehead lately. Unfortunately it doesn’t seem to be very easy to get a hold of most of his films besides Tonite Let’s All Make Love in London (1967) and his Rolling Stones’ documentary Charlie Is My Darling (1966), which are the only two Whitehead films I’ve managed to see. If anyone can offer me advice on where I might be able to get full uncut copies of his later experimental work such as The Fall (1969), Fire in the Water (1977) with John Lennon and Nathalie Delon, as well Daddy (1973), I would be very grateful.

Some Links:
Wonderful article about Peter Whitehead at Sight & Sound by Paul Cronin
Peter Whitehead’s Official Site

Some truly great video clips from the documentary In the Beginning was the Image: Conversations with Peter Whitehead are posted below which I highly recommend watching:

9 thoughts on “Conversations with Peter Whitehead

  1. I know nothing about him, but he seems like an interesting man. That room of journals in the 3rd clip…oh dear, that’s going to be me at 70!

  2. That last clip amazing and rather sad, but his comments about note books made me laugh out loud. I’m half way there at age 38.

    I really hope I can find more of his films somewhere. I’m dying to see his other work. I hate becoming interested in obscure directors when their work is so hard to find, but I’m totally obsessed with him at the moment.

  3. Thanks a lot Mike! I would love that. Feel free to send me an email whenever you can at: cinebeats @ and we can work out the details.

  4. I’m afraid I can’t help out with where to track down more tapes, but I did catch two of his films when the recent retrospective came to NYC–his Led Zep concert documentary (quite good, for what it is: not super ambitious) and Fire in the Water. I heard The Fall is his masterpiece and I’m still kicking myself for missing it.

    In case you haven’t come across it, there’s another good piece on Whitehead’s films here, by Nicole Brenez.

  5. I know little about Peter Whitehead, so your blog has inspired me to learn more about him. Thanks. I always like that when I discover someone new. Have a great weekend, Kimberly.

  6. Many thanks for the feedback Zach and Keith!

    Zach – It seems that a retrospective of Peter Whitehead’s films have been touring the US for the past year or two but I missed it when it was in San Francisco. Hopefully his films will be made more easily available soon. It’s a shame that his films seem so hard to access at the moment. Thanks for the link! I look forward to reading that piece by Nicole Brenez.

  7. The American Cinematheque did a min-tribute to Whitehead as part of their Mods and Rockers festival last month. I missed the program of his short films, but did manage to catch Tonight Let’s All Make Love In London, which I’d been wanting to see for a while. I enjoyed it quite a lot! Wish I could have seen the shorts, which included early promo clips for the Rolling Stones (like one where they recreate their Sixties drug trial, witha cameo by Marianne Faithfull!) and Pink Floyd. Maybe you could contact the Cinematheque for additional info on where to find these rarities?

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