Uncut: Diane Mahree


This is the one interview that I wasn’t sure I’d get to do. The mysterious Diane Adelson (“Mahree” is her middle name, which she elected to act under) went on to a long modeling career in Europe after playing (but not voicing) Margaret. Today, she values her privacy and only occasionally uses the internet. Living comfortably in Colorado and dealing in antiques, she has only more recently made herself known, traveling to Nashville for the Rifftrax Live Show and reconnecting with the friends and family of the cast. Once again, we owe Jackey Neyman Jones a debt for her invaluable, and tactful, help in introducing us to Diane.

Not only did Diane sit down with us in her home for an on-camera interview over the course of a day, she proved herself to be a witty and fascinating individual. Her interview paints a picture of a precocious young woman possessing a surplus of integrity, who approached Manos as she did everything else: with a sense of adventure, a committed attitude, and a healthy amount of humor.

Despite the fact that Diane did not want to make a career out of acting, and even though her role is very, very underwritten, her game approach to some of the most bizarre material in Manos never fails to leave a strong impression. I’m glad we’ll be telling her story.

Check the Gate

Here you can see some flaws in the image that will remain untouched. The ‘hairs’ visible on the top and bottom of the second image are actually instances of dirt and dust in the gate of the camera itself, and were permanently printed onto the image while shooting. A lack of cropping here allows us to see a great deal of new detail on each side, dirt included.

The often awkward framing in theatrical prints seems to be the result of lab work that cropped for the academy aspect ratio, although the film itself is clearly composed for the full- frame ‘silent’ ratio. This was likely due to a lack of academy frame guides in the viewfinder of the (silent) cameras used. We will be presenting Manos for the first time with the entire image area visible, as the director of photography saw it in 1966.

This shot, like many others in the film, is out of focus. There is no technology in existence, then or now, that can bring a soft shot back into focus, nor is it within the goals of the restoration to do so. As usual, color correction is not final.