Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
Writer-director Mike Nichols, then known for Broadway comedies and his satirical work with Elaine May, surprised everyone by choosing Edward Albee’s incendiary psychodrama Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? as his motion picture debut. Filmed on the campus of Smith College in Massachusetts, it’s a cinematic one-two punch thanks to the gloves-off performances of Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor (who bulked-up to a fighting weight of 155 lbs). Taylor snagged an Oscar (along with co-star Sandy Dennis and cinematographer Haskell Wexler—Burton and George Segal were nominated but lost). Albee had wanted James Mason and Bette Davis for the leads (in 1980 Nichols and May themselves starred in a New Haven revival).
About Dan Ireland
Dan Ireland loved movies of all shapes, sizes, genres and formats. As co-founder (and co-director) of The Seattle International Film Festival and Co-Artistic Director of The Louisiana International Film Festival, Dan produced over 15 movies including John Huston’s final film, The Dead, and Bernard Rose’s Paperhouse. He made his directorial debut in 1996 with the award winning The Whole Wide World starring Vincent D’Onofrio and a then unknown Renee Zellweger. His other directorial credits include Passionada, Mrs. Palfrey at The Claremont, starring Dame Joan Plowright and E.L. Doctorow’s Jolene, which launched the career of actress Jessica Chastain. What was to be Dan's next project, Mr. Lively, fell apart mere weeks before its scheduled production, a month before his passing on April 14, 2016.