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Discussion in 'Other Racing' started by spicedriver, Nov 5, 2018.
Very worthwhile, precursor to Steve McQueen: The Man & le Mans. Thanks for posting.
This "Filming at Speed" looks like a rather sanitized made for TV version seen
through the lenses of Chad McQueen.
"The Man and Le Mans" on the other hand is a not so flattering version of the
episode and while Chad McQueen is also in it, there are also others whom don't
portray McQueen in a favorable light.
I really enjoyed The Man & le Mans watch it if you haven't seen it.
I got a directors cut DVD from Michael Keyser, probably watched it a dozen times or more.
"The Man & Le Mans" is more along the lines of the book "French Kiss of Death" which was
a true accounting of the making of "Le Mans".
The Man & Le Mans
Andretti for one was very critical of McQueen's driving abilities. He was probably a little jealous of the attention. If the movie does have a cult following as stated, count me in. Rush was good too. I didn't really like Grand Prix.
Grand Prix captured a moment in time, it accurately portrayed the F1 scene of the mid-1960's. If I recall Peter Revson's lap times were significantly faster than McQueen's at Sebring. Revvie was a professional near the top of his game and McQueen was a very occasional road racer. To be fair Steve raced with his ankle in a cast from a dirt bike accident.
There was a lot of stick between McQueen, John Frankenheimer and James Garner as McQueen was
in position to be cast in Garner's role and be a part of the production team. They go into this a bit in "The
Man and Le Mans" and McQueen called "Grand Prix" an "example of a director playing with himself in
It can't be overlooked though that Garner was also into racing, more as a team owner of CanAm and
sports car teams in the late 60s and early 70s. He was regularly seen at Sebring during this era as
well. There was some conjecture that the rift between McQueen and Garner started on the set
of "The Great Escape".
But, as McQueen's first wife Neile Adams states in the movie, he was obsessed with creating an
empire so he and partners started Solar Productions with "Le Mans" setting the tone for the company's future. Unfortunately, the production was a train wreck with no script and ultimately McQueen relinquished control of the production as budgets and time went way past projections.
Keyser's "French Kiss of Death" delves much further into McQueen's exploits during the production.
It's a good read and Keyser, who's still around, likes to say "I know where all the skeletons are buried".