Hello, everybody. Joe Morella and Frank Segers, your classic movie guys, here today to finish out our answers to our July 18 blog, ‘The French Connection’ Quiz.
By this time, we hope we haven’t told you more than you ever wanted to know about this picture, directed by William Friedkin, but rather piqued your interest in viewing it another time. After all, it did win some Oscars (see below).
So here we go, answers to questions six through 10. (Answers to questions one through five can be found on our July 23 blog, Answers To Our ‘French Connection’ Quiz — Part I.)
6) Question: The French Connection spawned a sequel also directed by Friedkin. True or false?
Answer: False. There was a sequel, 1975’s French Connection II, but it was directed by John Frankenheimer.
7) Question: During the movie’s production, the management team at 20th Century Fox (which backed the film) was removed. Was it because of The French Connection’s realistic depiction of actual police work? Yes or no?
Answer: No. Fox was financially battered by a number of earlier and far more costly flops, and was in the throes of yet another Hollywood management upheaval of the kind that also afflicted other studios at the time.
8) Question: The studio’s early promotion of The French Connection had much to do with the film’s commercial success. True or false?
Answer: No, not according to Friedkin, who disliked the initial promotion. There was even talk of changing the title, which the director adamantly opposed.
9) Question: When The French Connection won an award from the Directors Guild of America, none other than Alfred Hitchcock made a special point of telling Friedkin how good it was and that he wished HE had made it. True or false?
Answer: False. Friedkin disliked Hitchock, who had upbraided the former earlier in his career for not wearing a tie on the set of a Alfred Hitchcock Presents tv segment Friedkin was directing. When a tuxedo and bow-tied Friedkin won the DGA award for The French Connection, he approached a seated Hitchcock and said: “How do you like the tie, Hitch?” He gave me a blank look. He didn’t remember his comment just four years before: “Mr. Friedkin, usually our directors wear ties.” I did.
10) Question: Who presented the Oscar to Friedkin? How many major category awards did it win at the 1971 Academy Award ceremonies: a) Charlie Chaplin, two; b) Gregory Peck, three; c) Alfred Hitchcock, one; or d) Frank Capra, four.
Answer: d) Capra presented the award, and The French Connection walked off with four of eight major Oscars including a best actor nod to star Gene Hackman, a best screenplay (based on other material) and, of course, a best director citation for Friedkin. The film also won in the best picture category.
Not bad at all for what its creators called “a little police movie.”