Steve McQueen: The Man & Le Mans
Time Out says
A documentary about how the coolest actor in the world almost ruined his reputation with his passion project, a racing movie
If Jeremy Clarkson was in charge of the Oscars, this would win Best Documentary hands down. It’s the story how ‘king of cool’ Steve McQueen made a disastrous vanity film about his passion for racing cars, entitled ‘Le Mans’. Call it his male menopause film. At the time, McQueen was one of the most powerful actors in Hollywood after starring in ‘The Thomas Crown Affair’ and ‘Bullitt’.
Watching interviews with his family and fellow cast members, it’s clear McQueen’s ego was out of control on the set of ‘Le Mans’, driving one director to quit with a shrug – ‘I’m too old and rich to put up with this shit.’ We also hear audio recordings made by McQueen himself not long before he died in 1980. ‘Le Mans’ ran over budget and over schedule (meaning autumn leaves had to be painted green), and it bombed at the box office. But it cured McQueen of his addiction to speed: ‘Now I’m clean,’ he said afterwards.