Writings by and about Lindsay Anderson

Lindsay Anderson speaking at the Edinburgh Film Festival on This Sporting Life.

The Rank Organisation – whose film it was – hated This Sporting Life – which of course they didn’t know how to handle.  No more of such unhealthy rubbish, they declared at the end of the year.  Family entertainment from now on. The London Evening Standard reprinted their remarks under the heading THE YEAR THE KITCHEN SINK WENT DOWN THE DRAIN.  The choice of words is revealing: the pleasure unmistakable.  Realism gave way to the myth of swinging London. The Americans, God bless them, put up a lot of money and the British made a lot of bad films.

Text reproduced with thanks to University of Stirling Archives (original text in the Lindsay Anderson Archive, LA/5/2/21)


Lindsay Anderson on the audition process, extract from diary entry, 9 August 1976,  (LA 6/1/73).

Auditions are the same anywhere. Not hysterical, fraught and melodramatic, as represented, for instance, in A Chorus Line – but still occasions of tension, disguised hopes, exposed nerves and susceptibilities. Of course, its not as bad for the auditioning director as it is for the artists who have to offer themselves and their abilities for what must usually seem painfully cursory examination: all the same, except for the power-intoxicated and the exhibitionist, its no joy for the director either. Sometimes one longs to hide oneself in the shadowy stalls, and leave the running of it all to one’s assistants. (And often this happens). But one cannot. The actors have to be met, greeted, shaken hands with, sometimes directed, thanked… And how often their hands are clammy with nerves.

Text reproduced with thanks to University of Stirling Archives (original text in the Lindsay Anderson Archive, LA/6/1/73)


Recommended Reading

  • Lindsay Anderson: Maverick Filmmaker, Eric Hedling (London: Cassell, 1998)
  • Lindsay Anderson: Cinema Authorship, John Izod, Karl Magee, Kathryn Hannan, Isabelle Gourdin-Sangouard (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2012)
  • Never Apologise: the Collected Writings of Lindsay Anderson, Lindsay Anderson, ed. Paul Ryan (London: Plexus Publishing Ltd, 2004)
  • Mostly About Lindsay Anderson, Gavin Lambert (London: Faber & Faber, 2000)
  • Going Mad in Hollywood, David Sherwin (London: Andre Deutsch, 1996)
  • Lindsay Anderson, Elisabeth Sussex (London: Studio Vista, 1969)
  • Hollywood, England, Alexander Walker (London: Harrap, 1974)
Lindsay Anderson