12 Angry Men is often near the top of many lists of top 100 films. However, it was not always certain that this would become the classic that it has become. This week, our guest is Dr. Phil Rosenzweig. We're going to discuss his book: Reginald Rose and the Journey of 12 Angry Men. We're going to discuss some of the inspiration behind Rose's penning of the play; his early connections with the great Rod Serling of The Twilight Zone; the casting of the film with Henry Fonda, Jack Klugman, Lee J. Cobb, E.G. Marshall, Ed Begley, etc.; the early perceptions of the film; some of the complications that it faced when it premiered; how it has become a great tool for educators; and how it continues to impact how we think of the justice system and what justice even entails.
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// EPISODE LINKS //
Dr. Rosenzweig's Book: https://amzn.to/3u9uHba (affiliate)
// EPISODE OUTLINE //
00:21 Introductory comments
01:48 Beginning of conversation
02:30 What was the genesis of this study?
05:36 Some background on Reginald Rose
07:36 The relationship between Rod Serling and Reginald Rose
12:37 Did Serling and Rose see themselves as competitors?
15:25 What were the three years like in between the play and the premiere of the film?
18:12 Unbelievable cast of actors--you need a strong director to hold it all together
25:22 I mistakenly thought there were some tensions on the set between Lumet and Fonda about specific shots, but I was wrong.
27:23 Talk about the slow rise of 12 Angry Men to its status as a classic film
31:46 What did you learn about how 12 Angry Men is being used in the classroom?
35:12 I have used 12 Angry Men in the classroom as well
37:21 Do you have a favorite scene in the film?
40:31 There is tremendous value in the performance of the story
45:36 My own real-life 12 Angry Men moment on a jury
46:41 People do try and act out the film in jury rooms
47:53 Fantastic historical note about the original draft of the story
50:27 Any other projects that you might be working on?
52:52 Closing thoughts
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