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Trailers from Hell: Alan Spencer Makes Our Day and Talks 'Dirty Harry,' Starring Clint Eastwood

Photo of Trailers From Hell By Trailers From Hell | Thompson on Hollywood August 5, 2013 at 1:23PM

Go Ahead, Make My Day! week starts at Trailers from Hell, with TV writer Alan Spencer introducing Don Siegel's iconic '70s vigilante classic "Dirty Harry," starring -- who else? -- Clint Eastwood.
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Clint Eastwood is "Dirty Harry"
Clint Eastwood is "Dirty Harry"

Go Ahead, Make My Day! week starts at Trailers from Hell, with TV writer Alan Spencer introducing Don Siegel's iconic '70s vigilante classic "Dirty Harry," starring -- who else? -- Clint Eastwood.

The odd conglomeration of names involved in the inception of what became Clint Eastwood's signature movie include John Wayne, Frank Sinatra, Irvin Kershner, Terence Malick and John Milius. The first two, along with Robert Mitchum and Steve McQueen and Paul Newman, turned down the role while the others were among the writers of numerous drafts, many set in New York rather than San Francisco. Bouncing from studio to studio, it almost ended up a tv movie for ABC! When Eastwood was approached he insisted on returning to the first draft and hiring Don Siegel to direct, as they had enjoyed working together on the offbeat flop The Beguiled.

This article is related to: Video, Video, Trailers, Trailers from Hell, Trailers, Clint Eastwood


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Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.