With each passing year we see more documentaries about films and filmmakers. Some get only a passing nod while others are embraced by critics and buffs alike. In The Ghost of Peter Sellers, Hungarian-born filmmaker Peter Medak travels back 47 years to explore what went wrong with a seemingly sure-fire project proposed by Sellers. He and his Goon Show comrade Spike Milligan wrote a pirate comedy called Ghost in the Noonday Sun but the filming was an absolute disaster.
Why would a man who has worked successfully in film and television all these years (with some great ones like The Ruling Class to his credit) choose to revisit the greatest nightmare of his career? It boils down to this: Ghost created a wound in Medak that has never healed. In spite of all the trouble Sellers caused, Medak still loves and admires him and wanted to tell this story. This fascinating feature documentary is something like an autopsy. The movie was never released, and what we see of it offers the definite impression that it would have been dead on arrival.
As Medak talks to fellow survivors of this disaster we bear witness to what might have been if the stars hadn’t so completely misaligned. For dyed-in-the-wool film buffs this is a valuable document.
To screen the film at home, click HERE.