• Short Summary

    Various footage of the author Somerset Maugham - he speaks of his writing and is seen at home.

  • Description

    Compilation of various Pathe material featuring Somerset Maugham.

    i) 1947 - Maugham talks of how his writing is autobiographical. He sits at his desk and talks of how his characters are founded on people he knows. "Fact and fiction are so intermingled in my work that ... I can hardly distinguish one from the other." He repeats statements that had been made against him by critics. He talks about the tradition of the telling of tales.

    ii) The second extract is silent - date unknown. Maugham walks through a park. He then stands on a balcony overlooking a city - unidentified. Could be somewhere on the banks of the Rhine. Other people stand with Maugham. We see him walk through the gardens of what is possibly an old college or palace or castle. M/S of Maugham sitting at a table talking to a fashion designer- or it could be his private secretary. Maugham smokes a cigarette and looks at some drawings - they could be drawings for a stage show. C/Us of the two men talking. Maugham puts on his spectacles and moves a small paper boat around on the table. (The Owl and the Pussycat?) They look at more drawings. A woman comes to the table with more drawings. One of the drawings is signed with Maugham's name - perhaps the drawing represents him when he was young or perhaps they are his drawings? C/Us of some drawings of what is probably stage sets. We see Maugham sign one of the drawings (the one we saw before with his signature.) L/S of the veranda upon which they are sitting - possibly Maugham's villa in the Riviera.

    iii) "Camera interviews - Mr W Somerset Maugham." - item from Eve's Film Review issue number 434. See record of the above name, found in EP112.

    iv) 1947 - Maugham in his library choosing a book. C/U of him flipping through the pages then reading a page and putting it back on the shelf.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    Media URN:
    British Pathé
    Issue Date:
    1920 - 1949
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Black & White
    Time in/Out:
    01:32:27:00 / 01:39:36:00

Comments (1)

  1. Unknown user says

    For ii), when Maugham was walking down the park, the man who walked behind him on the far left was Alan Searle, his secretary. When Maugham was discussing with the other man and the woman, Searle walked by at the back. I would think that they were discussing the staging of the opera "The Moon and Sixpence," first performed on 24 May 1957 at Sadler's Wells Theatre; and although it is not completely clear in the reel, the date that Maugham put with his signature looks like May 1957. They also showed him a Gauguin painting, "Where do we come from..." The drawing that Maugham signed could be the one that portrayed the nameless narrator of "The Moon and Sixpence." I doubt if they were at the veranda of Villa Mauresque. It looks more like somewhere they were walking about at the beginning.

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