“The Sandpiper” (1965) starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton is best known today for its theme song, Johnny Mandel and Paul Francis Webster’s immortal ‘The Shadow Of Your Smile’. The film has generally been dismissed as weak-tea soap opera with pretentious thematic references to the bird the film is named after, which has a broken wing and is nursed by Liz throughout the film. I personally have always had a soft spot for the movie, largely for the meta-experience of witnessing Liz and Dick making a movie on the beach with Vincente Minelli, slogging through the no doubt lengthy and weather-plagued shoot. This was the first film to be filmed in Big Sur, California and given the areas bosky, rugged terrain it could not have been easy. Above is a wonderful couple of minutes of what appears to be home movies shot on the location. We see Liz, Dick and Minelli trudging the sands, Minelli looking very directorial with his viewfinder. The footage is silent so I’ve also posted the theme song as played in the film. They both run about two minutes so its a perfect fit. Sync them up and enjoy!


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