…I had never seen Stanley Kubrick’s bare feet — not in real life, not in a photo. It’s not that big of a deal, but I immediately felt a twinge of regret. Let’s leave it at that. Male director toes should always be covered by animal leather or hip sneakers or at the very least socks. Especially if the male director hails from the Bronx. The only thing worse in this regard are mandals.

Filed on 10.31.11: Following a Savannah Film Festival screening of Barry Lyndon, James Toback told a funny story that happened during the cutting of Spartacus, which Stanley Kubrick directed and Kirk Douglas produced and starred in.

The story came from editor Robert Lawrence, who later edited Toback’s Fingers and Exposed.

“Kubrick and Lawrence were editing the finale when Jean Simmons, escaping from Rome with the help of Peter Ustinov, is saying goodbye to Douglas, who’s dying on a cross. Kubrick told Lawrence he didn’t want to use what he felt was a grotesque close-up of Douglas. Lawrence said the shot wasn’t so bad and in any case Douglas will surely complain when he notices that his closeup is missing. “I don’t care what he says,” Kubrick said. “I’m the director…take it out.”

They later showed the scene to Douglas, and his immediate comment was exactly what Lawrence had predicted — “Where’s my closeup?” Kubrick shrugged and said, “I don’t know, Kirk.” Kubrick then turned to Lawrence and said, “Where’s his close-up?”