Arnold Laven, R.I.P.

Written by Joe D on September 21st, 2009

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Producer- Director Arnold Laven has passed on. He’s responsible for a large amount of influential film and television. I just read a great interview with him the other day. It was done for the Noir City Sentinel, the newsletter of the Film Noir Foundation and you can read it here. I was so impressed with this interview I ordered the DVD of Laven’s directorial debut, 1952’s Without Warning, one of the first serial killer pictures and full of great Los Angeles location photography. I will post about it once I get it.

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Besides his great film noir work Laven was in a large way responsible for two giant Western television sagas, The Rifleman and The Big Valley. Both big sources of inspiration for a generation of filmmakers including Quentin Tarantino who has expressed as much to me.

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He also directed Tim Holt’s last picture The Monster That Challenged The World, Laven and Holt met many years earlier on the set of The Arizona Ranger and became good friends. He talked Holt out of retirement to make this SciFi /Horror movie. It has a gripping scene of a woman and a young girl trapped in a closet as the monster breaks through the door to get them. Check it out.

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