Hollywood great Orson Welles disappeared from the set of 1949 movie THE THIRD MAN in a bid to win more money from producers, a new documentary reveals.

SHADOWING THE THIRD MAN claims movie bosses chased the CITIZEN KANE star from Paris, France to Rome, Italy and then back again during the film's Vienna, Austria shoot - and even hired a magician to coax him back to the set.

The Third Man continuity assistant ANGELA ALLEN reveals, "They tried to find him in Paris and they got to Paris and he was in Paris.

"The moment (production assistant) BOB DUNBAR got to Paris, his little lordship had flown to Rome. And they got to Rome, he'd gone back to Paris. He played the games."

Welles eventually arrived on set a week late - after producer Alexander KORDA tracked him down.

Director FREDERICK BAKER says, "It was definitely part of his negotiation strategy to get the best deal possible.

"He really wanted to test Korda's limits, so he made life difficult."

Welles played racketeer HARRY LIME in The Third Man. Shadowing The Third man will premiere in London tomorrow (09JUL04).

08/07/2004 20:58