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TSPTR JOURNAL presents Apocalypse Now

124 pages dedicated to Coppola's "Los Angeles dream of war", Perfect Bound, 27 cm x 21 cm, 140gsm textured paper, full colour

In 1976 Francis Ford Coppola began work on a project that would would test his creative, financial, and psychological capacities to the limit. The adaptation of Joseph Conrad’s 1899 novella, Heart of Darkness, penned by fellow scribe and director John Milius in the late ‘60s under the working title The Psychedelic Soldier, shifted the setting of Conrad’s story from the jungles of Africa at the turn of the century to the deadly landscape of the Vietnam War.

Coppola suggested the film would be a ‘Los Angeles dream of war’ but when the cast and crew arrived in the Philippines in early 1976 to begin work on the film, little did they know that they would be embarking on a production that would go down as one of the most fraught and turbulent in cinematic history. From typhoons destroying sets to logistical overruns and unruly drug fuelled actors, heart attacks and nervous breakdowns, bringing Apocalypse Now to the screen would pose a series of risks and challenges to its creators that, in a pronounced example of life imitating art, would reflect the surreal journey into the unknown undertaken by Conrad’s protagonist in the film’s source material. The production was so rife with complications and hardships that the story behind the story reached heights of mythic proportions. Over the course of its unparalleled and lengthy shoot, which finally wrapped after a whopping 238 days, it seemed as though almost everything that could’ve gone wrong did go wrong.

As Captain Willard and his men traveled upriver into an increasingly bizarre, dangerous, and morally depraved reality, so too did the man at the helm along with his cast and crew. Perhaps most telling is the way in which Francis Ford Coppola described the production of his film when, more than three years later at the 1979 Cannes Film Festival, he said of Apocalypse Now, “We were in the jungle, there were too many of us, we had access to too much money, too much equipment, and little by little we went insane.”

This special edition of the TSPTR Journal is a homage to the story behind the story of Apocalypse Now.

Illustrations by Dan Wilson

Ethically made in England using sustainable sources

TSPTR JOURNAL presents APOCALYPSE NOW TSPTR JOURNAL presents APOCALYPSE NOW

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TSPTR JOURNAL presents APOCALYPSE NOW TSPTR JOURNAL presents APOCALYPSE NOW TSPTR JOURNAL presents APOCALYPSE NOW TSPTR JOURNAL presents APOCALYPSE NOW