A legendary comedic second banana to a litany of major stars, Curtis is forever cemented in the public imagination as Booger from Revenge of the Nerds. A classically trained actor, Curtis began his incredible 40-year career on stage but progressed rapidly to film and television. He was typecast early and it proved to be the best thing that could have happened.
But there’s more to Curtis’ story than that.
Born and bred a nerd, he spent his early years between Detroit, a city so nerdy that the word was coined there in 1951, and, improbably, Geneva, Switzerland. His adolescence and early adulthood was spent primarily between the covers of a book and indulging his nerdy obsessions. It was only when he found his true calling, as an actor and unintentional nerd icon, that he found true happiness. With whip-smart, self-effacing humor, Armstrong takes us on a most unlikely journey—one nerd’s hilarious, often touching rise to the middle. He started his life as an outcast and matured into...well, an older, slightly paunchier, hopefully wiser outcast.
In Hollywood, as in life, that counts as winning the game.
The hit Fox show Beverly Hills, 90210 became a cultural touchstone of the 1990s and propelled its young cast to mega-stardom, including Jason Priestley, who played honorable Midwestern transplant Brandon Walsh. Yet despite more than twenty years in and out of the limelight, Priestley has carefully maintained his privacy. In this compelling memoir, the actor, director, and race-car aficionado invites us into his private world for the first time.
With humor, sincerity, and charm, Priestley offers little-known details about his life and stories of his nine years in America’s most famous zip code. He talks candidly about celebrity, marriage, fatherhood, and his passion for car racing. He does not shy away from the devastating lows—his brief jail sentence for drunk driving and the crash at the Kentucky Speedway that nearly took his life. Priestley shares his innermost thoughts about life as a ’90s icon, and goes beyond the Brandon Walsh squeaky-clean image, revealing the tumultuous events that have shaped him, and where he finds his greatest happiness today.
Swanson cavorted in slapstick short films with Charlie Chaplin and Mack Sennett in the 1910s. The popularity of her films with Cecil B. DeMille helped create the star system. A glamour icon, Swanson became the most talked-about star in Hollywood, earning three Academy Award nominations, receiving 10,000 fan letters every week, and living up to a reputation as Queen of Hollywood. She bought mansions and penthouses, dressed in fur and feathers, and flitted through Paris, London, and New York engaging in passionate love affairs that made headlines and caused scandals.
Frustrated with the studio system, Swanson turned down a million-dollar-a-year contract. After a wild ride making unforgettable movies with some of Hollywood's most colorful characters--including her lover Joseph Kennedy and maverick director Erich von Stroheim--she was a million dollars in debt. Without hesitation she went looking for her next challenge, beginning her long second act.
Swanson became a talented businesswoman who patented inventions and won fashion awards for her clothing designs; a natural foods activist decades before it was fashionable; an exhibited sculptor; and a designer employed by the United Nations. All the while she continued to act in films, theater, and television at home and abroad. Though she had one of Hollywood's most famous exit lines--"All right, Mr. DeMille, I'm ready for my close-up"--the real Gloria Swanson never looked back.
Robert Vaughn was born an actor. His family worked in the theater for generations, and he knew from the very start that he would join them. In his fifty-year career, Vaughn has made his mark in roles on stage, in film, and on television the world over. In A Fortunate Life, he describes some of the one-of-a-kind experiences he's enjoyed in his celebrated career. A Fortunate Life reveals the details of his early years in Hollywood, when he found himself appearing as often in the gossip magazines as on screen, and he recounts insider stories about such legendary figures as Judy Garland, Bette Davis, Charlton Heston, Oliver Reed, Jason Robards, Richard Harris, Yul Brynner, Elizabeth Taylor, and many more. Vaughn's work in The Young Philadelphians, The Magnificent Seven, Superman III, and many other films won kudos from critics and peers alike. Worldwide recognition came when he starred in the smash hit series The Man from U.N.C.L.E., and he vividly describes the extraordinary experience of becoming, quite suddenly, one of the world's brightest stars.
Vaughn warmly recalls his romances with stars like Natalie Wood and his adventures with friends like Steve McQueen and James Coburn, but equally important was his involvement in the politics of the 1960s. The first actor to publicly speak out against the war in Vietnam, he served as national chairman of Dissenting Democrats, the largest antiwar organization in the U.S. He gave hundreds of speeches denouncing the war, debated William F. Buckley on national TV, and helped persuade his friend Robert F. Kennedy to run for president in 1968---only to see the race end in tragedy.
With a wealth of moving, wonderfully entertaining and often jaw-dropping stories from the worlds of acting and politics, A Fortunate Life is a must-read for fans of Robert Vaughn and anyone who wants a glimpse behind the scenes of classic Hollywood.
Long before his film career began, Webb was a child actor and later a suavely effete song-and-dance man in numerous Broadway musicals and revues. The turning point in his career came in 1941 when his good friend Noël Coward cast him in Blithe Spirit. Director Otto Preminger saw Webb's performance and cast him in Laura in 1944.
Webb began to write his autobiography, but he said that he eventually had gotten "bogged down" in the process. However, he did complete six chapters and left a hefty collection of notes that he intended to use in the proposed book. His writing is as witty and sophisticated as his onscreen persona. Those six chapters, information and voluminous notes, and personal research by the coauthor provide an intimate view of an amazingly talented man's life and times.
The New York Times Bestseller
A deeply personal and revealing Hollywood-survival story.
Lovable child star by age ten, international teen idol by fifteen, and to this day a perennial pop-culture staple, Corey Feldman has not only spent the entirety of his life in the spotlight, he's become just as famous for his off-screen exploits as for his roles in such classic films as Gremlins, The Goonies, and Stand by Me. He's been linked to a slew of Hollywood starlets (including Drew Barrymore, Vanessa Marcil, and adult entertainer Ginger Lynn), shared a highly publicized friendship with Michael Jackson, and with his frequent costar Corey Haim enjoyed immeasurable success as one half of the wildly popular duo "The Two Coreys," spawning seven films, a 1-900 number, and "Coreymania" in the process. What child of the eighties didn't have a Corey Feldman poster hanging in her bedroom, or a pile of Tiger Beats stashed in his closet?
Now, in this brave and moving memoir, Corey is revealing the truth about what his life was like behind the scenes: His is a past that included physical, drug, and sexual abuse, a dysfunctional family from which he was emancipated at age fifteen, three high-profile arrests for drug possession, a nine-month stint in rehab, and a long, slow crawl back to the top of the box office.
While Corey has managed to overcome the traps that ensnared so many other entertainers of his generation—he's still acting, is a touring musician, and is a proud father to his son, Zen—many of those closest to him haven't been so lucky. In the span of one year, he mourned the passing of seven friends and family members, including Corey Haim and Michael Jackson. In the wake of those tragedies, he's spoken publicly about the dark side of fame, lobbied for legislation affording greater protections for children in the entertainment industry, and lifted the lid off of what he calls Hollywood's biggest secret.
Coreyography is his surprising account of survival and redemption.
Marilyn's image is so universal that we can't help but believe we know all there is to know of her. Every word and gesture made headlines and garnered controversy. Her serious gifts as an actor were sometimes eclipsed by her notoriety—and by the way the camera fell helplessly in love with her.
Beyond the headlines—and the too-familiar stories of heartbreak and desolation—was a woman far more curious, searching, witty, and hopeful than the one the world got to know. Now, for the first time, readers can meet the private Marilyn and understand her in a way we never have before. Fragments is an unprecedented collection of written artifacts—notes to herself, letters, even poems—in Marilyn's own handwriting, never before published, along with rarely seen intimate photos.
Jotted in notebooks, typed on paper, or written on hotel letterhead, these texts reveal a woman who loved deeply and strove to perfect her craft. They show a Marilyn Monroe unsparing in her analysis of her own life, but also playful, funny, and impossibly charming. The easy grace and deceptive lightness that made her performances indelible emerge on the page, as does the simmering tragedy that made her last appearances so affecting.
Lipton's passionate and complicated seventeen-year marriage to Jones plunged her into motherhood and also into periods of confusion and difficulty. Her struggle to keep moving forward in the world while maintaining a rich inner life informed many of her decisions as an adult. When Lipton's marriage to Jones ended, she returned to television, appearing in David Lynch's Twin Peaks as well as in The Vagina Monologues and other stage productions. But her most recent triumph has been her overcoming a surprising diagnosis of colon cancer in 2003.
Breathing Out is full of fresh stories of life with the pop culture icons of our times, but is also a much more thoughtful book about life in the limelight, work, motherhood, and marriage. It's a refreshing and real look at the life of an actress who became, in many senses, a woman of her times.
Don't Hassel the Hoff follows David Hasselhoff's phenomenal career, from his earliest childhood role in Peter Pan to his latest adventure, starring in Mel Brooks's Tony award-winning musical, The Producers. There is no better time to celebrate Hasselhoff's life and a career that continues to grow and thrive. As the star of the extremely popular classic television shows, "Baywatch" and "Knight Rider," Hasselhoff is an international mega-star, with platinum album sales and starring roles on Broadway and London's West End.
As this fascinating memoir reveals, there's more to this handsome superstar than great hair, and legs that look good while running down a beach. "The Hoff" is also a smart, caring man with a huge heart.
"This book is my opportunity to print something from my heart, to tell the truth about what happened to me on the long and winding road from Baltimore to Baywatch to Broadway – and beyond. And the truth is not to be found in tabloid stories but in my actions: I am a good father and tried to be a good husband. I love people and the emotional rollercoaster that goes with human relationships. I love all the bewildering, crazy and wonderful things that life has to offer. This book is about my successes and my failures, my strengths and my weaknesses. And, above all, it is about the hope contained in the Knight Rider slogan: "One man can make a difference." --David Hasselhoff
Full of behind-the-scenes looks at Hasselhoff's television series, celebrations of his proudest moments, and the truths about his struggles with relationships and alcohol, Don't Hassel the Hoff is both highly entertaining and deeply personal, making this an engrossing page-turner from start to finish.
Long live "The Hoff."
William Friedkin, maverick of American cinema, offers a candid look at Hollywood, when traditional storytelling gave way to the rebellious and alternative; when filmmakers like him captured the paranoia and fear of a nation undergoing a cultural nervous breakdown.
The Friedkin Connection includes 16 pages of black-and-white photographs.
Wilder writes compellingly about the creative process on stage and screen, and divulges moments from life on the sets of some of the most iconic movies of our time.
In this book, he talks about everything from his experiences in psychoanalysis to why he got into acting and later comedy (his first goal was to be a Shakespearean actor), and how a Midwestern childhood with a sick mother changed him. Wilder explains why he became an actor and writer, and about the funny, wonderful movies he made with Mel Brooks, Woody Allen, Richard Pryor, and Harrison Ford, among many others. He candidly reveals his failures in love, and writes about the overwhelming experience of marrying comedienne Gilda Radner, as well as what finally had to happen for him to make a true and lasting commitment to another woman.
A thoughtful, revealing, and winsome book about life, love, and the creative process, the New York Times bestseller Kiss Me Like A Stranger is one actor's life in his own words.
Now, thirty years after the publication of her original National Book Award–winning memoir, Bacall has added new material to her inspiring history. In her own frank and beautiful words, one of our most enduring actresses reveals the remarkable true story of a lifetime so rich with incident and achievement that Hollywood itself would be unable to adequately reproduce it.
Introduction by New York Times bestselling author and famous minor television personality John Hodgman
One of my dad’s favorite jokes about getting older was: “I went out for coffee when I was twenty-one and when I got back I was fifty-eight!”
I get what he meant now. Time flies. My first book, If Chins Could Kill: Confessions of a "B" Movie Actor, was published back in 2001 and it chronicles the adventures of a “mid-grade, kind of hammy actor" (my words), cutting his teeth on exploitation movies far removed from mainstream Hollywood.
This next book, an “Act II” if you will, could be considered my “maturing years” in show business, when I began to say “no” more often and gravitated toward self-generated material. Taking stock in the overall quality of my life, I fled Los Angeles and moved to a remote part of Oregon to renew, regroup and reload.
If that sounds tame, the journey from Evil Dead to Spider-Man to Burn Notice was long, with plenty of adventures/mishaps along the way. I never pictured myself hovering above Baghdad in a Blackhawk helicopter, facing a pack of wild dogs in Bulgaria, or playing an aging Elvis Presley with cancer on his penis - how can you predict this stuff? The sheer lunacy of show business is part of the fun for me and I hope you'll come along for the ride.
– Bruce “Don’t Call Me Ash” Campbell
Pressly speaks openly of her extremely colorful family and of her growing understanding of how their lives have been shaped by larger forces, including prejudice, power, privilege, love, loss, and longing. She shares how the lessons she learned from their lives impacted her own journey and helped her succeed where so many others have failed.
Inspiring, heart-wrenching, and laugh-out-loud funny, It's Not Necessarily Not the Truth offers a slice of American life sure to touch the hearts of readers everywhere.
The remarkable life, career, and faith journey of the star of The Love Boat and The Mary Tyler Moore Show.
For 16 years, millions of Americans welcomed Gavin MacLeod into their living rooms every Saturday night. This veteran of stage and screen transformed himself from a seasoned character actor into the leading, lovable father-figure of The Love Boat at the height of TV’s boom years.
For more than 30 years, Gavin MacLeod has served as the global ambassador for Princess Cruises. Speaking to thousands of travelers each year, and signing hundreds of autographs at every port, he stands poised to celebrate his amazing journey with a look back at the golden era of American television.
The consummate storyteller, Gavin shares his fondest memories of meeting and working with countless stars, such as Cary Grant, Steve McQueen, Gregory Peck, Bette Davis, Frank Sinatra, Ethel Merman, Ella Fitzgerald, Ronald Reagan, Milton Berle, and Fred Astaire.
From his humble theatrical beginnings in upstate New York, to Radio City Music Hall and on to Hollywood, Gavin MacLeod was on the fast track to success. However, a few hard life lessons—like dealing with a divorce—taught Gavin that the key to happiness was only through a deep faith in God, and he feels his work for Christ is more important than any award. Three years later his remarriage proved that a great struggle can culminate in a happy ending.
Here she shares her life story with an admirable candidness of someone who has seen and done it all. With wisdom that only aging gracefully can bestow, she talks frankly about her four marriages as well as the other significant relationships in her life, including her courtship with Sidney Poitier; racial politics in Hollywood and on Broadway; and the personal cost, particularly to her family, of being a pioneer. Carroll's storied history, blunt views, and notorious wit will be sure to entertain and inform.
She is a one-name legend, a global icon, the ultimate diva. Yet most of what we know about Barbra Joan Streisand is the stuff of caricature: the Brooklyn girl made good, the ugly duckling who blossomed into a modern-day Nefertiti, the political dilettante driving to the barricades in her Rolls-Royce, the Oscar-winning actress and bona fide movie mogul, the greatest female singer who ever lived, a skinflint, a philanthropist, a connoisseur and a barbarian, the woman whose physical characteristics are instantly identifiable around the planet -- the tapered nails, those slightly crossed eyes, that nose, the voice.
Even to the multitudes around the world who idolize her, Streisand remains aloof, unknowable, tantalizingly beyond reach. Until now. In the manner of his #l New York Times bestsellers The Day Diana Died and The Day John Died as well as Jack and Jackie, Jackie After Jack, An Affair to Remember, and Sweet Caroline, Christopher Andersen taps into important sources -- eyewitnesses to Streisand's remarkable life and career -- to paint a startling portrait of the artist . . . and the woman. Among the revelations:
Surprising new details about her wedding and marriage to James Brolin.
New information about her many failed love affairs, including her never-before-revealed relationships with Prince Charles and Princess Diana's doomed lover Dodi Fayed -- as well as Warren Beatty, Ryan O'Neal, former Canadian prime minister Pierre Trudeau, Steve McQueen, Richard Gere, Kris Kristofferson, Don Johnson, Jon Voight, Andre Agassi, newsman Peter Jennings, and more . . .
A provocative inside account of what really went on between Streisand and Bill Clinton in the White House, what their relationship is like today, and how Hillary feels about Barbra.
From Funny Girl and The Way We Were to Yentl and The Prince of Tides -- and in the recording sessions that produced some of the biggest hits in music history -- new behind-the-scenes details of the brilliance, the obsessive drive for perfection, and the Callas-sized ego.
New insights into Barbra's relationship with her only child, Jason.
Whether you love her, hate her, or are simply spellbound by her titanic talent, Barbra is one thing above all others: a true American original.
For decades, Tippi Hedren’s luminous beauty radiated from the silver screen, enchanting moviegoers and cementing her position among Hollywood’s elite—beauty and star power that continue to endure. For too long Hedren’s story has been told by others through whispered gossip and tabloid headlines. Now, Hedren sets the record straight, recalling how a young and virtuous Lutheran girl from small-town Minnesota became a worldwide legend—as one of the most famous Hitchcock girls, as an unwavering animal activist, and as the matriarch of a powerful Hollywood dynasty that includes her movie star daughter Melanie Griffith, and rising star Dakota Johnson, her granddaughter.
For the first time, Hedren digs deep into her complicated relationship with the man who discovered her talent, director Alfred Hitchcock, the benefactor who would become a repulsive and controlling director who contractually controlled her every move. She speaks openly about the dark pain she endured working with him on their most famous collaborations, The Birds and Marnie, and finding the courage she needed to break away.
Hedren’s incandescent spirit shines through as she talks about working with the great Charlie Chaplin, sharing the screen with some of the most esteemed actors in Hollywood, her experiences on some of the most intriguing and troubling film sets—including filming Roar, one of the most dangerous movies ever made—and the struggles of being a single mother—balancing her dedication to her work and her devotion to her daughter—and her commitment to helping animals.
Filled with sixteen pages of beautiful photos, Tippi is a rare and fascinating look at a private woman’s remarkable life no celebrity aficionado can miss.