Kate Moss said he was the only one who could keep up with her. To Anna Wintour, he knew everybody on the planet. Billed as “the most famous person you’ve never heard of,” enigmatic British producer Michael ‘Chalky’ White steps into the limelight with Gracie Otto’s comprehensive feature documentary, The Last Impresario. Set against the heady cultural backdrop of the 1960s and 1970s, the London theater and film tycoon took a slingshot to the establishment with his trailblazing productions that included The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Pina Bausch and Yoko Ono,. “To be a successful theater producer you also have to be a gambler, and Michael was prepared to take incredible risks,” says Otto, who became engrossed with White following a chance encounter at Cannes. “He created an amazing network of friends: Facebook before Facebook was created.” White, who was awarded a Lifetime Achievement award at the prodigious Olivier Awards in London earlier this year, comes across on camera as a man of few words but his vast archive of off-duty snapshots of Jack Nicholson, Nicole Kidman and Christopher Reeve speaks volumes. “Kate Moss and Michael share a birthday, and people said he discovered her,” adds the director. “She hardly does any interviews so it was a real coup, and she was completely happy to share stories of Chalky.”
The Last Impresario is released in UK cinemas and on demand from September 26.