The news about Ken Russell’s death hit me hard. Just last week the great man actually took the time to befriend me on Twitter (I’d been following him there for a year or more). I exchanged a brief note with him and got the opportunity to tell him I was honored that he had taken the time to follow me. And I hope that he knew he was one of my favorite directors. He was jovial online, seemed extremely friendly and still very young at heart. I had imagined sending the 84-year-old director some interview questions soon that I hoped he would answer about the upcoming DVD release for my favorite Russell film, THE DEVILS (1971), which featured production design by Derek Jarman. He seemed very excited about that upcoming DVD release but also disappointed that his work was still being censored in 2011. Obviously that email interview wasn’t meant to be. Que sera, sera! You will be greatly missed Unkle Ken. You and your amazing movies made the world a much more interesting place to live in.
Update (12-1-11): At The Movie Morlocks I briefly memorialized Ken Russell by sharing a bunch of insightful quotes from his 1989 autobiography, Altered States: The Autobiography of Ken Russell.
Some Recommended Links:
– Ken Russell: A True British original @ BBC
– Ken Russell Dead: Film loving stars lead tributes on Twitter @ The Daily Mirror
– Ken Russell Obituary @ The Guardian
– Ken Russell: A Life in Photographs @ The Guardian
– Ken Russell: His Film Career @ The Guardian
– The Musical Legacy of Ken Russell @ The Guardian
– “Pity we aren’t madder”: Ken Russell links in his magnificent memory @ Film Studies For Free