Father Mapple, Captain Ahab and Orson Welles

Orson Welles played Father Mapple in John Huston's film version of Moby Dick. He gives the sermon on Jonah and the whale that Ishmael and his Christian shipmates hear before sailing. Welles would have made a great Ahab.

Welles planned to do something on his own with Melville's Moby Dick. He started and never finished filming some scenes in 1971.

The footage is Welles reading from the book shot against a blue screen with some basic inserted footage that made it look like he was at sea.

At the time, he was actually filming The Other Side of the Wind, another more ambitious film that was also left unfinished.

It is unclear what Welles planned to do with the Moby Dick readings.

When Orson Welles died in 1985, all of his unfinished films were left to his long-term companion and mistress Oja Kodar. She turned many of them over to the Munich Film Museum for preservation and restoration. In 1999, the Munich Film Museum edited together the rushes of Moby Dick into a 22-minute cut, but we don't know what Welles planned to do with that footage - certainly not just him reading a book on film.

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