Pulling No Punches (2016)
Rod Taylor is the subject of a documentary whose world premiere air date
was Feb. 11, 2016, on Foxtel Arts in Australia.
The 80-minute film is directed by Robert de Young and co-produced by Stephan Wellink and Stephan Elliott, who directed Rod in "Welcome to Woop Woop."
Wellink said that he conceived the idea for the documentary some five
years ago. Interviews with Rod were conducted in late 2012, and the team
has continued to push forward with development.
Mark Hartley, whose credits include "Not
Quite Hollywood," originally was slated to be the director of the
film and participated in interviews with Rod. These interviews can be
previewed in two trailers on Robert de Young's
Vimeo page for
projects in development for Lowlands Media.
Upon viewing the full documentary, I was charmed, amused, energized and
mightily entertained. Not only that, I was stunned at the multitude of
new-to-me photos that were included in the film.
The film is edited magnificently, with a great flow and terrific
The people who are interviewed capture Rodís essence perfectly. Among
the interviewees are co-stars such as Veronica Cartwright, Tippi Hedren,
Angela Lansbury and Maggie Smith; biographer Stephen Vagg; and longtime
business manager Murray Neidorf.
A particularly special segment features Rodís artwork -- paintings,
sketches and pottery. What a talent he was in so many ways.
The interviews with Rod and others illuminate the documentary's theme of
his role in solidifying the
Australian male identity in Hollywood.
"Rod set the mold for the Australian onscreen tough guy/charming leading
man and paved the way for the likes of Mel Gibson, Russell Crowe, Hugh
Jackman and others to follow,Ē de Young said in an
interview published by SBS on Jan. 13, 2015.
In the SBS article, Wellink said he wanted to celebrate Rod Taylor
"because he was a great actor who deserved to receive greater
recognition for his achievements, particularly in his homeland,
"My fondest memory of working with Rod for the documentary was the
experience of bringing his co-star from 'The Birds,' Tippi Hedren, to
his house for the interview," Wellink said. "Tippi and Rod hadn't seen
each other for about 20 years and it was a great privilege to be able to
bring these two stars together to talk about working with Hitchcock.
They loved catching up and sharing a laugh about their early days in
In an e-mail to this website on Jan. 9, 2015, Wellink said: "It is such
a shame that Rod will not see our homage to him."
Stephan Wellink with Rod in 2012.
Thanks to Stephan Wellink for the Special Thanks!