FILM AND VIDEO DIRECTORS

PUBLISHER
Reel Art Press

BOOK FORMAT
Hardcover, 9.5 x 11.5 in. / 336 pgs / 80 color / 250 bw.

PUBLISHING STATUS
Pub Date
Active

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D.A.P. Exclusive
Catalog: FALL 2018 p. 12   

PRODUCT DETAILS
ISBN 9781909526334 TRADE
List Price: $75.00 CDN $99.00

AVAILABILITY
In stock

BROWSE THE 2019 FALL CATALOG

Preview our Fall 2019 catalog, featuring more than 500 new books on art, photography, design, architecture, film, music and visual culture.

  

REEL ART PRESS

Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece

Foreword by Quentin Tarantino. Text by Christopher Frayling. Photographs by Angelo Novi.

Featured image, of Leone's fourth shoot-out, the climactic duel between Harmonica (Charles Bronson) and Frank (Henry Fonda), behind the Sweetwater ranch-house, is reproduced from 'Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece.'

"Once Upon a Time in the West was the movie that made me consider filmmaking."–Quentin Tarantino

Sergio Leone's film Once Upon a Time in the Westset out to be the ultimate Western—a celebration of the power of classic Hollywood cinema, a meditation on the making of America and a lament for the decline of one of the most cherished film genres in the form of a "dance of death." With this film, Leone said a fond farewell to the noisy and flamboyant world of the Italian Western, which he had created with A Fistful of Dollars and sequels , and aimed for something much more ambitious—an exploration of the relationship between myth ("Once Upon a Time..."), history ("...in the West") and his own autobiography as an avid film-goer. This would be a horse opera in which the arias aren't sung, they are stared. Once Upon a Time has since inspired several generations of filmmakers worldwide. Its combination of "film about film" with an angry historical epic, told with great style, has resonated for half a century, and its reputation has steadily grown. This book, by the world-renowned authority on Sergio Leone, Christopher Frayling, includes revealing personal interviews with all the key players involved in the movie (in front of the camera and behind it) a wealth of never-before-published documents, designs and photographs, and the latest research into the making of a masterpiece, shot by shot. It is introduced with a foreword by Quentin Tarantino. This year is the 50th anniversary of Once Upon a Time in the West and this richly illustrated book is a suitably spectacular birthday tribute.


Christopher Frayling is a world-renowned authority on the films of Sergio Leone. He has written Leone’s biography, curated a major world-touring exhibition on his work, published the classic study of the spaghetti western phenomenon and provided commentaries to Leone DVDs and television documentaries. Now he turns his attention to the making of Leone’s masterpiece. Frayling is an award-winning broadcaster and writer on film, design and popular culture. He was Rector of London’s Royal College of Art from 1996 to 2009, and was also Chairman of the Arts Council of England and a Governor of the British Film Institute. He was Professor of Cultural History at the RCA for over 30 years and is now Professor Emeritus. Christopher was knighted in the year 2000 for “services to art and design education”. As Sergio Leone once said to him, “it took an Englishman to take my films seriously...”

Featured image, of Leone's fourth shoot-out, the climactic duel between Harmonica (Charles Bronson) and Frank (Henry Fonda), behind the Sweetwater ranch-house, is reproduced from 'Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece.'

PRAISE AND REVIEWS

DVD Choice

Barry Forshaw

Frayling is unquestionably the world's leading authority on the definitive director of Spaghetti Westerns, and its hardly cause for argument to say the book turns out like an absolute treat - and, yes, definitive...Frayling's text is both authoritative and accessible, with no stone unturned...

Total Film

Matt Glasby

A widescreen book for a widescreen classic, Frayling collates a staggering amount of material.

Los Angeles Times

Kenneth Turan

The movies may not be getting bigger than ever, but the books on them most definitely are, starting with Christopher Frayling’s pleasantly massive “Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece.”

Los Angeles Times

Kenneth Turan

Frayling, the world's leading Leone expert, has amassed photographs, posters, production sketches and more, and Leone fan Quentin Tarantino has written the introduction to this impressive volume.

The Telegraph

Editorial

Behind the scenes of the greatest Western ever made.

Trebuchet Magazine

Rhett Fisher

Frayling’s own masterpiece... a book for the ages about making a movie for the ages. This is the coffe table book you will actually want to pick up and read.

The Observer

Alexander Larman

This sumptuously produced book is both a fine tribute to Sergio Leone's 1968 masterpiece and an insightful look at how a piece of cinema can gather an almost mythic reputation in the half-century since it was produced...[The text is] scrupulously researched and consistently surprising.

BBC Radio London

Jason Solomons

A beautiful, handsome tome as beautiful in pictures as it is in prose.

BBC Radio 3 'Free Thinking'

Matthew Sweet

A massive and gorgeous book about Sergio Leone's landmark Spaghetti Western.

Home Cinema Choice

Anton Van Beek

For a film that turned 50 this year, its hard to imagine a better birthday gift than this superb book...it all adds up to a remarkably thorough exploration of both the production and the man who masterminded it...This is the definitive account of the making and legacy of Leone's epic. Highly recommended.

Washington Post

Kenneth Dickerman

“Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece” [...] will tell you just about everything you want to know about the Italian director Sergio Leone’s classic spaghetti western.

Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece

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FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 6/4/2019

Sir Christopher Frayling speaking and signing 'Once Upon a Time in the West' at Rizzoli

Sir Christopher Frayling speaking and signing 'Once Upon a Time in the West' at Rizzoli

Monday, June 10 from 6–8 PM, Artbook | D.A.P., Reel Art Press and Rizzoli Bookstore present an evening with world-renowned cultural historian and Sergio Leone authority Sir Christopher Frayling, in celebration of the new book, Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece. Following his talk and a Q&A, Frayling will sign copies of the book.
continue to blog


FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 4/23/2019

Check out this book trailer for 'Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece!'

Check out this book trailer for 'Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece!'

Sergio Leone's film Once Upon a Time in the West set out to be the ultimate Western—a celebration of the power of classic Hollywood cinema, a meditation on the making of America and a lament for the decline of one of the most cherished film genres in the form of a "dance of death." At long last, on the occasion of the film's fiftieth anniversary, we are pleased to announce the release of Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece, authored by the world-renowned Sergio Leone authority, Christopher Frayling, and published by Reel Art Press. It includes revealing personal interviews with all the key players involved in the movie (in front of the camera and behind it), a wealth of never-before-published documents, designs, and photographs, and the latest research into the making of a masterpiece, shot by shot. Foreword is by Quentin Tarantino. See Reel Art Press's book trailer below. continue to blog


FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 6/10/2019

Once Upon a Time in the West was Sergio Leone's 'gift to America of its lost fairy stories'

Once Upon a Time in the West was Sergio Leone's 'gift to America of its lost fairy stories'

This great Angelo Novi photograph of director Sergio Leone on set with Jason Robards during the 1968 shooting of Once Upon a Time in the West is reproduced from Christopher Frayling’s glorious new 336-page study, Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece. Frayling quotes filmmaker John Boorman: “The Western went into decline when writers and directors became self-conscious and introduced psychological elements… Leone’s ‘Spaghetti’ Westerns revitalized the form because he consciously reverted to mythic stories, making the texture and detail real, but ruthlessly shearing away the recent accretions of the ‘real’ West and its psychological motivations. Unfortunately this was not understood in Hollywood: In Once Upon a Time in the West, the Western reaches its apotheosis. Leone’s title is a declaration of intent and also his gift to America of its lost fairy stories. This is the kind of masterpiece that can only occur outside trends and fashion. It is both the greatest and the last western.” continue to blog


FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 5/24/2019

Martin Scorsese on 'Once Upon a Time in the West'

Martin Scorsese on 'Once Upon a Time in the West'

Angelo Novi's July, 1968, photograph of legendary Italian filmmaker Sergio Leone showing Henry Fonda—veteran of many Westerns—how to hold a gun, is reproduced from Reel Art Press's whopping new study of Leone's Western masterpiece, Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece, authored by renowned London film scholar Sir Christopher Frayling and reviewed this week in The Washington Post. In the book, Frayling interviews Martin Scorsese on the film's influence. "What I found so fascinating," Scorsese states, "and how Once Upon a Time in the West became such a favorite film of mine—such an obsession—was that I began to understand more and more the combination of commedia dell'arte with operatic tradition and the framing; the framing which was not simply comic-book art—which is very strong and very visual, it's very cinematic—but also baroque art, the faces of the characters like landscapes, explored in close-ups and in even tighter close-ups, extreme close-ups; the extraordinary manipulation of the editing, slowing down time—first in the opening sequences of Once Upon a Time in the West before the titles—slowing down time or accelerating time; and the choreography of Morricone's music was the overall cue. I began to understand that this is opera, this is commedia dell'arte, this is Italian, it's not an American Western, this is an evolution of the Western—this is a whole new genre and that's what made it so important…" continue to blog


FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 7/4/2019

OTD in 1776 and 1969

The greatest book ever made about 'Once Upon a Time in the West'—the greatest Western

Today, we're celebrating 243 years of American Independence, as well as the 50th anniversary of the American wide release of Sergio Leone's quintessential American Western masterpiece, Once Upon a Time in the West. "I do believe that Sergio Leone is pointing the way towards modern filmmaking," Quentin Tarantino says in his Foreword to Once Upon a Time in the West: Shooting a Masterpiece, Sir Christopher Frayling's now-and-forever ultimate study of the film. "You don't go past Leone, you start with Leone… For my money I think he is the greatest of all Italy's filmmakers." Other figures interviewed in this definitive, copiously illustrated, 336-page volume include Leone himself, who spoke with Frayling on numerous occasions over his lifetime; his wife, Carla Leone; Assistant Director Giancarlo Santi; story and screenplay writers Bernardo Bertolucci, Dario Argento, Sergio Donati and Mickey Knox; Cinematographer Tonino Delli Colli; Production Designer Carlo Simi; Production Manager Claudio Mancini; Composer Ennio Morricone; actors Henry Fonda, Jason Robards, Claudia Cardinale, Charles Bronson, Gabriele Ferzetti, Woody Strode and Jack Elam; and others! continue to blog


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