Journalists love the device we call “the telling anecdote.” It’s a simple quote, gathered for a story, that much about the subject of that story just a sentences. For instance, many of us who write about film collect tidbits from who worked with Stanley Kubrick, the genius who made “Dr. Strangelove,” “2001,” and “The Shining.” Here’s one of mine. The late John Ireland, who played a sidekick gladiator in Kubrick’s Kirk Douglas vehicle, “Spartacus,” described how Kubrick got the facial expressions for the scene where Ireland, Woody Strode and Douglas, as gladiators about to enter the arena to fight to the death, sit in the closed cage that into the ring. “Stanley wasn’t getting what he wanted out of us. And rather just talking and talking and doing retakes, he stopped everything and sent an assistant out to fetch a record and a record player. It was “Love for Three Oranges” (by Prokofiev). “He gets us back into position, rolls camera, and starts the record. Now, I’ve heard it before and I’m remembering where I’ve heard it. Kirk has heard it, too, but he’s kind of gritting his that the whole […]