Many loyal Cormanites have spread the word that “Roger Corman: An Unauthorized Biography of the Godfather of Indie Filmmaking” captures the man better than his own biography did! Beverly Gray worked for over 10 years as Roger Corman’s story editor at both New World Pictures and Concorde-New Horizons…her research and insight, plus candid and thoughtful input from David Carradine, Ron Howard, and John Sayles and some 80-odd members of Corman’s circle, make this a not-to-be-missed read for fans of the man and his work.
[ The following is an excerpt from Chapter 8, “Artistic License”: ]
Roger Corman and the Academy Awards are not usually mentioned in the same breath. But on April 8, 1975, many of the big winners had a Corman connection. Best Film and Best Director Oscars went to Francis Ford Coppola for The Godfather Part II. Best Supporting Actor was Robert De Niro, for his performance in the same gangster epic. Ellen Burstyn was named Best Actress for Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore, directed by Corman alumnus Martin Scorsese. Other nominees that year: Talia Shire and Diane Ladd, both up for Best Supporting Actress; cinematographer John Alonzo, whose very first film was Bloody Mama; and Jack Nicholson, favored to win Best Actor for his starring role in Chinatown. (The award went instead to Art Carney, for Harry and Tonto, leading Corman to joke that Nicholson’s loss had spoiled his personal sweep.) Robert Towne, who won the year’s Best Original Screenplay honors for his Chinatown script, surveyed the glittering multitudes and said, in the presence of reporter Bill Davidson from the New York Times Magazine, “This joint looks like a meeting of the Roger Corman Alumni Association.”
For more on the book, the author, and links to other Corman resources, visit [ www.beverlygray.com ]