Euzhan Palcy Remembers Brando’s Nerves on the Set of A Dry White Season

Inside Criterion / Sneak Peeks — Dec 17, 2018


Euzhan Palcy’s searing 1989 drama A Dry White Season—an indictment of South Africa’s racist apartheid-era regime that made its own mark on history, becoming the first Hollywood studio film directed by a black woman—owes much of its power to its stellar cast. Led by Donald Sutherland and Winston Ntshona as a white schoolteacher and his black gardener, the film features a particularly impressive, Oscar-nominated supporting turn by Marlon Brando, who anchors the movie’s fiery, riveting courtroom scenes as a crusading lawyer hired by Sutherland’s character to help shed light on the injustices faced by his employee’s family. Among the supplementary material on our new release of A Dry White Season is an interview with Palcy that includes her behind-the-scenes account of collaborating with the legendary Brando. She tells the story of how the actor, who at the time hadn’t appeared on-screen for nearly a decade, calmed his nerves by asking some of the technicians on the set about their jobs. And keep watching to hear the gracious words that the actor had for the cast and crew once his time on the shoot came to an end.