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Andy Warhol Is Making Movies

July 4, 1964 - Last weekend, from plush upper Madison Avenue pads to a seamy tenement on Avenue C, shooting was in full swing on “Soap Opera,” the latest or pop artist Andy Warhol’s pop movies. Like an increasing number of movie-conscious artists, Warhol, whose wooden Brillo cartons recently starred in a show at New York’s Stable Gallery, seems the film as a logical extension of his medium.

“Movies are the most visually exciting art because they’re the least static,” he says.

But the pace of Warhol films could hardly be called snappy. They include such items as “Sleep,” an 8-hour work whose only subject is a slumbering man.

“Soap Opera,” the first Warhol sound movie, may have a bit more action though. Described by its producer as “marvelously sordid and lugubrious,” its running time is a mere 2½ hours, interrupted every three minutes by a commercial.

Directed by Jerry Benjamin, an Actors’ Studio man, its plot as the hero and heroine (played by Samuel Adams Green, a director of New York’s poppish Green Gallery, and Jane Holzer) constantly teetering between far-out triumph and tribulation.

Several scenes, it is said, are played in the nude. There’s no happy ending either.

“It just drifts off,” says Warhol, “like a true-to-life soap opera.” But unlike a true-to-life soap opera, the film won’t be available to mass audiences.

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