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The Complete Western Stories of Elmore Leonard
The Tonto Woman and Other Western Stories
When the Women Come Out to Dance
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Law of the Hunted One
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Only Good Ones
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Hurrah for Captain Early
Karen Makes Out
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Sparks
Hanging Out at the Buena Vista
Fire in the Hole
Chickasaw Charlie Hoke
When the Women Come Out to Dance
Tenkiller
Showdown at Checotah
Louly and Pretty Boy
Chick Killer (2011)
Ice Man

Film and TV

Moment of Vengeance
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52 Pickup
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Glitz (TV)
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Border Shootout
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Get Shorty
Last Stand at Saber River
Pronto
Touch
Elmore Leonard’s Gold Coast (TV)
Jackie Brown
Maximum Bob
Out of Sight
Karen Sisco
The Big Bounce (II)
Be Cool (2005)
The Ambassador
3:10 to Yuma (2007)
Killshot (2009)
Freaky Deaky
The Tonto Woman
Sparks
Justified
Life of Crime

Tonto Woman Press Release

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The Tonto Woman

Directed by Daniel Barber
Running Time 35 minutes


Based on a short story by Elmore Leonard, The Tonto Woman is director Daniel Barber’s first short film.

Barber collaborated with writer Joe Schrapnel, DP Ben Davis (Layer Cake, Stardust) and Producer Matthew Brown, to produce the 35 minute long western.

Barber and Schrapnel spent a year developing the screenplay from the original short story. “It was a wonderfully rewarding experience to sit and work through ideas with Joe” says Barber, “we’d spend hours debating how we could best translate Elmore’s words into a piece of film.” Brown adds “We were very conscious of the fact that we had an incredible short story to work from, and that we had to do it justice as a film. Daniel and Joe’s were keen to stay sensitive to both the dialogue and the tone of the original piece.”

Exhaustive casting for the film took place in Los Angeles, London, and Madrid with the lead parts being taken by Francesco Quinn, son of the late Anthony Quinn, and young English actress Charlotte Asprey. Quinn plays Ruben Vega, a cattle rustler, and Asprey Sarah Isham, the wife of a rancher.

The film was shot in Almeria Spain over the course of ten days utilizing some of the locations and sets seen previously in the classic Westerns “A Fistful of Dollars” and “The Good the Bad and the Ugly”. Additional sets for Sarah’s house and the ranch and homestead of Vega’s accomplice, O’Halloran, were meticulously designed and built by production designer Johnny Green and his team of craftsmen.

A winter of extraordinary rainfall meant that the desert, arid during the recce, had become a lush green landscape by the time shooting began. The bad weather continued throughout shooting with the team having to constantly adapt their schedule. Davis and Barber turned the elements to their advantage though producing a series of stunning panoramic vistas of the verdant desert. Then rescheduling to shoot the stand off between Ruben Vega and John Isham’s henchman during a howling dust storm.

Editing took place in London and was carried out by leading commercials editor Rick Russell. He worked with Barber constantly refining the film until both were happy. “Daniel has an incredible eye for detail and a very clear vision,” states Russell, “we both revelled in exploring the nuances of the piece.”

Telecine was completed by Jean-Clement Sorret at MPC. Post production was supervised by Jason Watts at Finish.

Dan Jones composed the film score, which he had recorded in Bratislava. “I fell in love with Dan’s orchestration from the moment I first heard his work. He’s immensely talented but also incredibly busy. It’s such a vital piece of the film, I knew we had to wait for him and work around his schedule” said Barber. “Finally seeing the finished film with Dan’s score was a wonderful moment for us. The end of a four year long journey” adds Brown.

The Tonto Woman has won Best in Fest at the LA Shorts Film Festival as well as Best Film over 30 minutes at the Palm Springs Festival. It is currently under consideration for the Academy Awards 2008.

 

 

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