Hal Ashby Documentary 'Once I Was' is in the Works

Entitled Once I Was: The Hal Ashby Story, director Amy Scott’s awesome-sounding documentary will explore the life and work of "Hollywood’s unsung hero" Hal Ashby (Harold and Maude, Being There).

Authorized by the director's estate, this will be the official documentary on Ashby, a key figure in the 1970s New Hollywood scene and one of cinema’s most influential and enigmatic personalities. With exclusive access, and a group of dedicated collaborators, the film will feature talking head appearances from Jane Fonda, Rosanna Arquette and John C. Reilly, with potential appearances from Warren Beatty, Jon Voight, Jack Nicholson, Sean Penn, Cat Stevens/Yusuf Islam, Norman Jewison, Alexander Payne, Adam Mckay, Bud Cort and more.

On May 19th, the filmmakers will launch a campaign to finance the documentary on Indiegogo, the premier crowdfunding site for independent film. The goal is $50,000. Director Amy Scott says: “We have access to his estate, we have interviews lined up, and located never-before-seen archival footage – we just need the official funding to get rolling.”

We’ll be keeping a beady eye on the project, so expect some updates soon. In the meantime, you can follow the documentary’s progress here:


Hal Ashby: selected filmography
Harold and Maude (1971)
The Last Detail (1973)
Bound for Glory (1976)
Coming Home (1978)
Being There (1979)


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