Cited by critics as one of the 100 greatest American films ever made, Barbara Loden’s script was inspired by a newspaper article of a ‘real-life’ Wanda. For her debut, she teamed up with cinema vérité Cinematographer and Editor Nick Proferes, who imbued Wanda with neo-realist vision of rural Pennsylvania; a landscape strewn with factories, lost souls and punctuated by moments of extraordinary beauty.
Barbara Loden was a Tony award-winning Broadway actress who made her cinema debut in Elia Kazan’s Wild River (1960). She married Kazan and after her appearance in Splendour in the Grass, she mostly retired from the screen, until Wanda in 1970. Her directorial debut was met with huge critical praise and signalled Loden as a major talent, however an untimely death aged 48, meant that never came to pass. Wanda stands as a lone artefact of a wealth of cinematic talent undiscovered.
Restored by UCLA Film & Television Archive with restoration funding provided by Gucci and The Film Foundation, of which Martin Scorsese is the Founder and Chair.
10 Sep - 25 Sep
Winner of the International Critics Award at the 1970 Venice Film Festival, Wanda remains one of the most essential (and rarely-seen) works of the American Independent Cinema. Hollywood star Barbara Loden wrote, directed and also starred as Wanda; a beguiling woman who abandons her family and hits the road. What begins as a desperate and mysterious escape for Wanda, turns sour when she’s caught up in a bank robbery gone wrong.