He could have been James Bond, but British cinema’s most notorious hellraiser lost focus and died at the age of 61, leaving Ridley Scott to piece together his final performance as the slave dealer Proximo in Gladiator (2000) using outtakes, body doubles and CGI. Such was the affection for Oliver Reed among BAFTA members, however, that he was posthumously nominated for the best supporting actor award. But the public had come to think of him as a drunk making a boorish spectacle of himself on chat shows and Channel Four forums like After Dark. “Let’s face it”, Reed told critic Roger Ebert around the time he made Women in Love (1969). “There has to be somebody like me around. The press can’t write about fruits in paisley shirts. They like somebody like Richard Harris or myself, somebody who’s a boozer and gets in fights and is colourful as hell.”
Dave Evans has been good enough to give us the two amazing missing sequences from The Devils. Here we present to you The Rape of Christ, and the alternate ending.
Finally, you must watch Hell on Earth: The Desecration and Resurrection of The Devils, a documentary in which critic Mark Kermode goes on the search for the missing footage. Featuring interviews with many of the key players from the film.
Thanks again for checking out Celluloid Junkies. We’ll see you next month with a close-up, in depth look at the various film versions of “A Star Is Born”, focusing on Frank Pierson’s 1976 version starring Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson.