7 July 2018

The Third Film

In the period allowed for questions, a young woman asked Robert Towne whether there was any chance for the completion of the 'trilogy' that had been begun with Chinatown.
'No,' he told the questioner. 'No chance.'
- David Thomson, The Whole Equation, 2004
Few things pique the curiosity of film buffs more than those films it seems they'll never get to see. There are those that were lost or destroyed - Orson Welles' original cut of The Magnificent Ambersons, Eric von Stroheim's eight-hour version of Greed. There are those that remain unreleased or unfinished - Jerry Lewis' notorious The Day the Clown Cried and various Orson Welles projects, most notably The Other Side of the Wind i.

Then there are those that were planned, but never made - Stanley Kubrick's Napoleon, Alejandro Jodorowsky's Dune, and further episodes of successful film series.

The Godfather saga once had a fourth entry floated, one that would have followed the rise of Vincent Corleone (Andy Garcia's character in The Godfather Part III) intercut with the early years of the rise to power of the Corleone Family - largely focusing upon Vincent's father, Santino/Sonny Corleone, much as The Godfather Part II continued the story of Michael Corleone, while showing the early years of his father, Vito.

Mario Puzo did write at least one draft/outline of The Godfather Part IV, but it never went any further as a film project, perhaps due to Part III's initially cool reception and then its ongoing reputation as a thoroughly inferior attempt at continuing such an epic story.ii

Similarly, detective Jake Gittes was once intended to feature in a third adventure, one which would also never eventuate, thanks to the difficulties surrounding the second part, The Two Jakes. Exactly what this third instalment would have involved is somewhat difficult to piece together, and the amount of misinformation surrounding it makes it that much harder. If you check out the likes of IMDB, Wikipedia and plenty of other websites, the main myths you'll find about the third Jake Gittes film are:

a) Chinatown was always meant to be Part 1 of a trilogy about the development of Los Angeles;

b) the third episode ended up being made as Who Framed Roger Rabbit? in 1988, or rather, followed the exact same plot, involving the buying up of the Los Angeles public transport system by corporate interests;

c) it was to be called Cloverleaf, the same name as Judge Doom's company in Roger Rabbit. 

While these very widely spread (and all-too-generally accepted) scenarios may have some connection with what Robert Towne had in mind for the third film, the reality is that they're largely the product of over-enthusiastic publicity spin and Internet speculation.

However, a number of details regarding this final episode have been revealed by more reliable sources in recent years - vague and undeveloped, but they point to something other than a non-comedic version of Roger Rabbit.

For the entire decade following Chinatown, a sequel, The Two Jakes, was repeatedly touted as an upcoming production from producer Robert Evans, one that would once again star Jack Nicholson and be scripted by Robert Towne. When The Two Jakes finally became a 'go' project in 1985, it was revealed that there were also plans to make a third Jake Gittes film.
Two Jakes is actually Part Two of what Nicholson, an art buff, refers to as Towne's L.A. 'triptych.' The third saga is set in the late '50s.
"I don't think of (Two Jakes) as a sequel since it's all part of the same story," says Towne. "It's about the things that people have traditionally been greedy over, the things that have shaped, and misshaped, this city."
- Los Angeles Times, January 23, 1985

Right through the troubled history of The Two Jakes, this third part would be often mentioned, with small details occasionally slipping through. The most enthusiastic proponent of this three-part vision was (and continues to be) Jack Nicholson, and it's largely from him that the rather misleading idea that this is how it was envisioned from the very start has come about.
FILM COMMENT: Tell me about Two Jakes—is it a genuine sequel to Chinatown?
JACK NICHOLSON: Not exactly: We always had the idea of three films in the back of our minds, but at the time of Chinatown’s release [1974], sequels weren’t a big part of the industry. The first story began in 1937—which is the year of my birth—and follows my character eleven years later after he’s been through the war. That’s 1948; and the third story finishes off at about the time Robert [Towne] and I actually met.
In other words, it’s a literary contrivance; an 18-year project. We wanted to do a project whereby you waited the real amount of time that passed between the stories before going forward. That’s why we never talked about a sequel; why we negotiated a contract wherein they couldn’t make one without us—they couldn’t do a TV series. I don’t have to gray my hair for Two Jakes because eleven years have passed and I played the part before and this is what I look like eleven years later. Cinematically it works.
Statistically, people’s careers don’t last 18 years, so to plan an 18-year project is insane. But we’re almost half-way there now. The next one, to represent 1953, which is just before Robert and I met, will be five years from now. They deal with Big Elements: air, land, water, fire. I’m demi-collaborative in all of it. Bob’s doing the writing—and he’s definitely in the running as the great screenwriter of our time—but we’re partners. I’m the vehicle. The risk we take is that no one will want to see the third movie. You got to have a little trust.
- Film Comment, May/June issue, 1985
(This interview was most likely conducted in early 1985, prior to the late April/early May collapse of the first attempt at producing The Two Jakes)
Robert Towne and I were roommates at some point, and he had this idea that we talked about - I don't know how long before he actually started writing it - to do a trilogy on Los Angeles, and the idea was to do a film, a trilogy, and wait the same number of years between them that passed in real time, that started in 1937 and end with a third film in 1953, the year that no-fault divorce went into effect in California.
- Jack Nicholson, Chinatown: The Beginning and the End DVD featurette, 2007
It was sort of always within the plan to do three movies, that was from the conception and talking early on. Chinatown is about water, Two Jakes is about fire - and earth, really - and the third picture will have been about air, I believe, really about privacy.
- Jack Nicholson, Jack on Jakes DVD featurette, 2007
It's certainly a tantalising idea - Robert Towne creating a grandiose history of the development of Los Angeles that he would split up into three parts, to be told almost in real time, much as George Lucas sometimes claimed that his Star Wars saga was originally a script so large that it had to be split up into two entire film trilogies. Just like Lucas' claim, though, Nicholson's spin doesn't hold up to closer scrutiny.

For a start, Towne himself denies it.

It was never envisioned as a trilogy, it just sort of grew that way, and for a time it looked as if it might become that. But we never got that far, we didn't get past the second one.
- Robert Towne, Chinatown/Two Jakes screening, Aero Theater, July 23, 2011
Q: Wasn't this supposed to be part of a trilogy, originally?
Towne: That's not really true, I mean, I was going to do a sequel, and then when I was doing the sequel I was thinking, "Well, make it three", but it was never planned from the beginning.
- Turner Classic Movies Q&A, April 13, 2012
Not exactly known for his strict adherence to the truth, it's Robert Evans, ironically enough, who gives perhaps the most accurate estimate of how and when the idea of this 'Chinatown trilogy' really came about.
For six years, Towne had structured in his mind the second part of a trilogy in the growth of Los Angeles, so he was euphoric when Jack and I said, “Let’s put it on go.”
- Robert Evans, The Kid Stays in the Picture, 1994
This statement refers to a period in 1984, just after The Cotton Club debacle, so if the figure of six years is to be believed, this would suggest that Robert Towne only really started developing his sequel to Chinatown around 1977/1978 - at least four years after he'd written the original.

Reports in Variety from 1976 point towards The Two Jakes being something Evans and Towne were actually working on at the time, with a title and even a co-star for Nicholson (Dustin Hoffman). It's quite possible that Evans has his years a little bit muddled, so it may have been closer to eight years that Towne had been developing Jakes - but what Evans doesn't suggest in the slightest is that he'd been planning it since 1973.

Nicholson's also stretching credibility when he claims that the grand plan was to tell an eighteen-year-long story over an actual period of eighteen years. The eleven-year gap between Chinatown and The Two Jakes may have worked quite neatly as it should have turned out (it would actually become a sixteen-year interim), but Robert Evans was first reported as planning 'Chinatown II' in December of 1974 for the New Year, and, as mentioned, more concrete plans for the production were coming together by 1976. If Jakes had actually gotten the go-ahead back then, no-one was going to wait around for another eight or nine years to start shooting.

However, it'd be extreme to accuse Jack Nicholson of out-and-out fabrication, he's merely getting carried away with aspects of this project that evolved naturally over the years, and which seem to add to its appeal. To audiences, the notion that ongoing film series are closely following grand visions that have been mapped out from the start seems to give the existing story more depth. It's far more interesting to think that future episodes 'really exist' somewhere and will tie everything up neatly at the end, than it is to face the reality - that, for the most part, the filmmakers are making it up as they go along.

Most likely, the 'trilogy' (or triptych, as Nicholson likes to call it) concept came about some time in the mid- to late 1970s, when Robert Towne actually sat down to continue the story of Jake Gittes, and elements of this larger vision came from ideas he had originally had for Chinatown.

His first two drafts of Chinatown end with an epilogue which shows a vista of the Los Angeles of 1937 dissolving into the crowded, polluted city of the present day:

Gittes stops his car and gets out. He looks toward the valley and begins walking along the road. It's raining very hard now.

And, what with a daughter killing her father, nobody paid much attention to anything else. What I figured out ended up buried on page thirty-two - and I was wrong about the thirty million - it was more like 300 million. Evelyn spent four years in prison and after that, she disappeared. I don't know where she is now. But Mulwray came out of it pretty well. After ruining his reputation and his life, they named a street after him.

Gittes looks down. By him is a curbstone. In it is set a bronze plaque. Rain is pelting off it.

"FROM THIS DAY FORWARD ALTA VISTA ROAD WILL BE KNOWN AS MULWRAY DRIVE in honor of Hollis I. Mulwray - Zanjero - Water Engineer - Architect of the City - by unanimous resolution of the City Council of El Pueblo de Nuestra Senora la Reina de Los Angeles de Porciuncula, March 12, 1938."

Only the first bold letters of the plaque are legible. Gittes straightens up. The ANGLE now includes the new sign post saying MULWRAY DRIVE. Rain continues to fall in relentless sheets. Gittes looks out at the valley.

The drought had hung on just long enough for them to get their dam. Whenever the sun broke through the clouds that winter, the valley was all green and something to look at.

Gittes looks toward the valley as the sky clears and sharp spears of sunlight break through the lush plain below, the mountains cold and clear beyond.

...and it's still there, of course.

As it has cleared, the view of the valley below changes through a series of DISSOLVES. The CAMERA COMES CLOSER and CLOSER to the plain and the valley, with each DISSOLVE, resembles itself today - until CAMERA is in the midst of all its contemporary sprawl - the tangle of traffic, ugly buildings, foul air, and noise.

The sign saying 'Mulwray Drive' would find its way into The Two Jakes, as would the line about such people having streets named after them.

The final shot of 1938 Los Angeles dissolving into the polluted Los Angeles of the present day appears to be what inspired this 'grand plan', that Jake Gittes' investigations over two decades would also follow the development of the city and the accompanying damage to the environment. However, in his early drafts of Chinatown, Towne simply planned to convey this message with the final shot, which, effectively, ends the story right there. Of course, Towne's ending was changed dramatically for the final film, and although its bleak ending doesn't exactly cry out for a sequel, it doesn't preclude one, either.

One way or another, at some point the larger vision did come about in Towne's mind, and a third film was definitely planned to follow The Two Jakes. So what would it have been about?

Here's where things get a bit confusing.

Initially, all that was revealed was little more than the fact that it would be set some time in the 1950's. According to Nicholson in the 1985 Film Comment interview, it would be set in 1953 - five years after the time of The Two Jakes, and a few years before he and Towne met in Los Angeles. He also mentions that between them, the three films would deal with the 'Big Elements' - water (Chinatown), land, fire (The Two Jakes) and air (the third film).

The following year, Towne elaborated somewhat, although the exact year of the film's setting changed:

And for those who have wondered what happened to Jake Gittes, the cynical detective of Chinatown, he apparently is still a gumshoe in Los Angeles - as of 1948, that is. According to Robert Towne - an Oscar-winner for his Chinatown script - The Two Jakes is:
''not a sequel so much as the second part of the same story. It's a continuation of something that has interested me - the growth of the character of Gittes is partly an expression of the way the city itself has changed. A lot that happened in the first movie - set in 1937 - was based on historical fact, on how the city was formed. I don't view it as a sequel - Jack has been firmer, he sees it as a triptych."
The triptych label comes from Mr. Towne's plan for a third chapter, set in 1959 Los Angeles:
''That's when Jake ceases being a detective. Being a detective is a way of viewing the place in which one lives,'' he says. ''In the course of investigating anything, he's also investigating the city. And in each part, he's different and the city's different. Everything changes: What he thought he liked about it and what he didn't like.''
- New York Times, June 29, 1986
Not much, although Towne does mention that Jake "ceases being a detective". Four years later, he would begin to reveal just why:
The topic of a third panel to the triptych is greeted almost mournfully by both Nicholson and Towne, and they've diverged on its precept as well. Nicholson has always said that the first picture having begun in the year of his birth, the third one would take place in 1959 - "the year Robert Towne and I met in L.A." For Towne, the answer now is more prosaic, having to do with Gittes's bread-and-butter work as a matrimonial snoop. Yes, Towne allows, the third panel would take place "in 1959. Do you know why? It's the year that no-fault divorce came to California." He makes it clear that he's not working on that script anytime soon, though he says there's a start on it somewhere - "Yeah, there is - I would have to dig it out. I haven't looked at it."
- Premiere, September 1990
The fact that Nicholson and Towne cite different years isn't too surprising, given that this was a story barely into the earliest stages of its development, if that. At some point it may have been planned to set it in 1953, later this could have changed, based on the story elements.
What is interesting, however, is Towne's claim that 1959 was "the year that no-fault divorce came to California." This simply isn't true. The state of California adopted no-fault divorce (the dissolution of a marriage in which neither spouse is required to prove fault or marital misconduct on the part of the other, e.g. adultery, physical abuse) with the Family Law Act of 1969, which came into effect on January 1st, 1970.
It's quite possible that Towne had the date wrong, or, more likely, was simply playing fast and loose with the facts to suit the timeframe in which he wanted the story set. He'd done so successfully with Chinatown, which is set in 1937, despite the fact that the 'California Water Wars' which inspired it largely occurred in the first decade of the 20th century.
What's important about the concept of no-fault divorce to the story of Jake Gittes isn't so much when it was adopted, but that it would effectively end his career, which was almost entirely founded upon catching unfaithful partners in the act in order to facilitate divorce.

With the fiasco of The Two Jakes finally drawing to a close in 1990, and the friendships between Towne and both Jack Nicholson and Robert Evans in tatters, talk of this third Jake Gittes film quickly died away.

Some years later, however, with the advent of the Internet, discussion and speculation about the unmade chapter began to spread. Perhaps the most long-held belief is that the third film would follow a similar plotline to the 1988 film Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

This isn't as ludicrous as it sounds. Although Roger Rabbit is an all-out comedy showing off a then-dazzling mix between animation and live-action, its core plotline is somewhat more sinister and all too real. A company called Cloverleaf, secretly owned by the villainous Judge Doom, is buying up the Los Angeles streetcar system. Doom later reveals that his plan is to dismantle it completely, in order to boost the use of the new freeway system, along with all the resulting infrastructure - petrol stations, roadside diners and so on.

LA streetcars awaiting demolition, 1956
This was based directly upon a real-life corporate conspiracy that had almost as much impact upon the city of Los Angeles as the California Water Wars had nearly half a century earlier. Often known as 'The General Motors Streetcar Conspiracy', from 1936 to 1948 it involved the buying up of U.S. public transit systems by an organisation called National City Lines, and the subsequent dismantlement of streetcar systems in an attempt to monopolise surface transportation, by switching public transportation to buses. Major investors in NCL included General Motors, Firestone Tire, Standard Oil of California, Phillips Petroleum and Mack Truck.

In 1949, a number of these investors were convicted of conspiring to monopolise the sale of buses and supplies to companies controlled by National City Lines, but acquitted of conspiring to monopolise the ownership of the companies themselves. Each of the corporations involved were fined a paltry $5000, and their executives a mere $1.

Just the sort of conspiracy Jake Gittes might stumble upon during a routine marital investigation, and it's not surprising that many would have speculated that Robert Towne could have had it in mind for Jake's final case. So many, in fact, that a number of websites cite it as fact, even claiming that the third film's title would be Cloverleaf - the name of Judge Doom's company, which derives from a term referring to a type of freeway interchange configuration.

A 'cloverleaf' interchange
However plausible it might sound, though, there's very little solid evidence to indicate that the streetcar conspiracy was ever intended to feature in the final film. I've been unable to find a single quote from Towne, Nicholson or Evans that mentions it in even the vaguest way, and when asked about the alleged title in a 2009 interview, Towne simply replies, "No, I don't know where the title Cloverleaf came from."

The closest 'evidence' that appears to exist are a handful of throwaway references by journalist David Thomson, who has, admittedly, enjoyed a close association with Robert Towne:
For in his mind, at least, there had been a time when Towne had hoped to follow his private eye, Jake Gittes, through the decades - 1937, 1947, 1957 - tracing the story of water rights, of oil, and of the killing of public transport to let the automobile own Los Angeles. There had been a second movie, The Two Jakes - much troubled and not satisfactory, and plainly removed from Towne's control or authorship - but nothing of a third film.
- The Whole Equation, 2004

Chinatown was especially close to his heart, not just as a tribute to private-eye fiction, but as a magnificent portrait of Los Angeles as it came of age and as maybe the last of the great complicated story lines that movies dared. Even in the 1970s, Towne dreamed of carrying his hero, Jake Gittes, into the 1940s and 1950s as L.A.’s water problems turned into the story of gasoline and automobiles.
- David Thomson, The New Biographical Dictionary of Film

Who Framed Roger Rabbit? is a triumph of organization, a film that manages to make its laborious tricks seem airy and magical, and the true sequel to Chinatown with its portrait of Los Angeles mugged by the automobile.
- David Thomson, The New Biographical Dictionary of Film
The first two quotes may well have been based upon inside information that Thomson was privy to, but then again, they may have merely been his own speculation.

The third, regarding Roger Rabbit, is merely figurative, and may have led to the misinterpretation on the part of a number of readers that there was a closer connection between the two films.

Popular though it is, the whole Roger Rabbit/streetcar connection to the third film is tenuous at best, being based largely upon educated guesses and second-hand information. It's quite possible that Towne did once intend for the streetcar conspiracy to be a part of the third film's plot, but abandoned the idea when Roger Rabbit beat him to it.

Howard Koch Jr, Evans & Towne
As time passed, Towne found himself back on speaking terms with Evans and Nicholson once more. The three were even reunited at a 30th anniversary screening of Chinatown on November 18, 2004. Their friendships were never the same again, but not long after, the third Jake Gittes film became a topic of discussion in interviews again, and a few more details slipped through, including its title.

Evans & Nicholson
VENICE MAGAZINE: Many people probably aren’t aware that Chinatown was originally planned as the first part of a trilogy.
ROBERT TOWNE: Right. After The Two Jakes there was going to be a final chapter, Gittes vs. Gittes, which dealt with the new concept of no-fault divorce in the 1950s.
VENICE: And we’ll never see this, correct?
TOWNE: Correct.
VENICE: Can you tell us why?
TOWNE: Well, in the interest of maintaining my friendships with Jack Nicholson and Robert Evans, I’d rather not go into it, but let’s just say The Two Jakes wasn’t a pleasant experience for any of us. But, we’re all still friends, and that’s what matters most.
- Robert Towne, Venice Magazine, March 2006
Not long after, Nicholson revealed a few more intriguing tidbits, and, once again, the year in which the film was to be set changed:
MTV: Was the third film in the "Chinatown" trilogy ever scripted?
Nicholson: No. I would imagine Robert has some kind of outline. I can tell you it was meant to be set in 1968 when no-fault divorce went into effect in California. The title was to be "Gittes vs. Gittes." It was to be about Gittes' divorce. The secrecy of Meg Tilly's character was somehow to involve the most private person in California, Howard Hughes. That is where the air element would have come into the picture.
MTV: Would you consider doing the film still? I would think if you and Towne said, "We want to do this," Paramount would say, "Go for it."
Nicholson: I certainly would consider it. I would imagine Bob would as well. [But the second film's behind-the-scenes problems] left a few bruises. I don't know how Paramount would be. The timing is about right.
- MTV.com, November 5, 2007
Rosie Vela as Linda in The Two Jakes
So, not only was Jake facing the possibility of becoming obsolete with the introduction of no-fault divorce, he would have had his own divorce to deal with. It's unknown who he would have been married to - towards the end of The Two Jakes, his fiance, Linda, ceremoniously dumps him, believing she's caught him with another woman. Of course, Jake and Linda could have since patched things up over the misunderstanding, but it certainly would have been a rocky marriage, given the abrasive nature of Linda's character in the very brief appearances she makes in the film.

Howard Hughes in 1956
The sudden introduction of Howard Hughes into the mix opens up a number of possibilities - in 1968, the legendarily reclusive billionaire was involved in a number of activities that could have provided material for the plot of the third Jake Gittes film - he bought the entire North Las Vegas Air Terminal ("That is where the air element would have come into the picture"), he was thwarted in his attempt to buy the Stardust Hotel and Casino by the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice, he was trying to prevent underground nuclear testing in north-central Nevada, and he was also making large contributions to the presidential election campaign of Richard Nixon (Hughes' donations would later be investigated during the Watergate trials).
Jean Peters in 1972
At this time, Hughes was living as a recluse in the penthouse suite of the Las Vegas Desert Inn. He was also married to actress Jean Peters at the time, although not living with her. They would be divorced in 1970, after which Peters refused to say a bad word about him or provide any information to the press whatsoever about their marriage.
It can hardly be a coincidence that Jack Nicholson had, reportedly, been developing a film based on Howard Hughes during the 1970s, as had his friend Warren Beattyiii, so it's very probable that he was the one to introduce Hughes to the Gittes universe as a result.
Last known photo of Hughes, 1961
However, given that Howard Hughes was living in Las Vegas in 1968 and never leaving his hotel, let alone the city, while Jake Gittes' activities were in Los Angeles, it's most likely that Gittes vs Gittes would have had a character directly based upon Hughes, not a portrayal of the historical figure himself. Katherine Mulwray could have been married to this reclusive character, and this could have been where the themes of privacy and no-fault divorce came in.
1968 brought the film's timeframe closer to its theme, and with his quote, "the timing is about right", Jack was also clearly indicating that he still nurtured a faint hope that the impossible could happen. If Gittes vs Gittes was to be set twenty years after The Two Jakes, there were still a few more years to get it done and keep the 'real-time' conceit intact.

However, Robert Towne soon put this possibility to rest, although he did confirm the later date of 1968:
THI: This was originally planned as part of a trilogy, with The Two Jakes being the second part, and Cloverleaf being the third.
RT: No, I don’t know where the title Cloverleaf came from. It was actually supposed to be Gittes vs. Gittes, took place in 1968, and was about the era when no-fault divorce became legal in California.
THI: Is there any chance this will ever see the light of day?
RT: No, I would have to say no chance. I mean, anything is possible, but I doubt it.

- 'Forget It Bob, It's Chinatown', The Hollywood Interview, October 2009
In another interview that year, Towne elaborated slightly on the plot, revealing that there would be some larger public corruption involved, and that Gittes would actually find himself something of a victim of the old-fashioned divorce laws upon which he'd made his living, right before they were about to be made redundant.
AVC: At one point, you intended Chinatown as the first act of a trilogy, and your third act was going to focus on 1953, when no-fault divorce became law in California. Why did you focus on that as the subject for the third film?
RT: Well, that was only part of it. There was, I think, some public corruption that was being dealt with as well. But the irony of a man whose entire professional existence was based upon divorce where blame could be assigned to one party would be virtually the last person on whom that law could be used, before it was obliterated from the books and really making him lose his profession as he knew it.
AVC: So the idea is of him being put out to pasture, or made obsolete by that change?
RT: Well, yeah, or having to deal with that.
- The AV Club, October 13, 2009
So there you have it. Some time in the 1970s, after Chinatown was made, Robert Towne came up with the idea of expanding the story of Jake Gittes into a trilogy which would follow the development of Los Angeles across several decades. The second film, The Two Jakes, was set in 1948, and was released in 1990. The three films would each have dealt with elemental themes - water (Chinatown), earth and fire (The Two Jakes), and air (the third, unmade film).

The third film was to have been called Gittes vs Gittes, and could have been set as early as 1953, or as late as 1968. It would have been primarily about the introduction of no-fault divorce to the state of California, resulting in the end of Jake Gittes' career as a marital private investigator, although Gittes' own divorce would be one of the last to be handled under the old laws.

The film may have involved a character based upon Howard Hughes, who was connected in some way to Katherine Mulwray, from Chinatown and The Two Jakes.
At some point during its development, it also may have been intended that the story would address the General Motors Streetcar Conspiracy in some fashion.

Not a whole lot to go on, but that seems to be all that's out there. It's quite possible that Robert Towne may yet divulge more, perhaps an actual synopsis or even a treatment that he wrote back in the 1970s or 1980s, but it's also just as likely that he didn't actually come up with much more than what's already been revealed.

i Over thirty years after Orson Welles' death, with a myriad of legal tangles stretching even further back, The Other Side of the Wind has finally been completed, thanks to the intervention of Netflix. At the time of this post, it is still awaiting a release date, but is due to be released in 2018. 
ii The backstory, or 'prequel', elements of Part IV were adapted into a novel, written by Ed Falco and published in 2012 as The Family Corleone. The novel deals with Vito Corleone's rise to power as the leader of the most powerful of the Five Families in New York, how he came to be associated with the demonic Luca Brasi, while his son, Santino, finds his destiny. 
iii Beatty did eventually make his Hughes film, Rules Don't Apply. It was released in 2016, roughly forty years after he began planning it.

(The picture of Jack Nicholson in the poster mockup at the top of the page is taken from a 2007 Vanity Fair film noir photo feature, Killers Kill, Dead Men Die, by Annie Leibovitz.

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