Tag Archives: film production

RIP Artur Brauner (1918 − 2019)

After the death of Ben Barenholtz, another film producer expires.

Artur Brauner was a German film producer and entrepreneur of Polish origin.

I came upon him by way of Jess Franco (Brauner produced Vampyros Lesbos) and also via the film adaptations of Edgar Wallace (The Devil Came from Akasava, also directed by Franco).

Hollywood Reporter summarizes my sympathy for this man in this soundbite: “while his dramas won awards, it was sex and sensationalism that often paid the bills”[1]. This also explains why Brauner too is a bit of a cinematic Losfeld who typically financed high art with exploitation.

The Thousand Eyes of Dr. Mabuse (1960, full film)

The Good Soldier Schweik (1960, excerpt)

The Bird with the Crystal Plumage (1970, full film)

Vampyros Lesbos (1971, Soledad Miranda dance)

RIP Ben “midnight movie” Barenholtz (1935 – 2019)

Ben Barenholtz was a film producer who is best-known for financing Miller’s Crossing (1990), Barton Fink (1991) and Requiem for a Dream (2000).

Requiem for a Dream, one of the best drug films ever.

“Best-know” is a exaggeration, because outside of the film world he is not known at all. I’ve written about my fascination with financing of art films in a blogpost titled the “cinematic Losfeld” in which I compared these film producers with Éric Losfeld.

My comparison to Éric Losfeld is perhaps not optimal, since Losfeld worked in the shadows of legality and Barenholtz worked in the margins but not in illegality.

El Topo, the first midnight movie and an archetypal cult film

When Barenholtz was younger, he was a movie theater manager and film programmer. As such, he was famous for creating the concept of the midnight movie, the programming of cult films at midnight (because of there unsuitability for children) during the 1970s and 1980s, before VCR and video rental came and changed film consumption forever.