Yesterday The Pursuitist posted outtakes of a sloshed Orson Welles attempting to say his lines for one of his Paul Masson Wine commercials, which ran in the ’70s.

I thought immediately of Malcolm Lowry‘s Geoffrey Firmin character in Under The Volcano, a penetrating portrayal of a British consul with an alcohol problem but more profoundly a book about “a constant struggle against the elemental forces that threaten to destroy him,” as one reviewer stated.

In Welles’ case those forces would be those many, many producers, studio chiefs and industry players who refused to take him seriously as a filmmaker, preferring to regard him as a colorful, storied fellow who had been permanently put out to pasture.

Then again it’s impossible to think of the Paul Masson brand without recalling Welles’ famous line, to wit: “We will sell no wine before its time.” Welles was canned as a Paul Masson spokesperson in the early 1980s after admitting on a talk show that he never drank Paul Masson wine.