The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside The Room, the Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made

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New York Times bestseller—now a major motion picture directed by and starring James Franco!

From the actor who somehow lived through it all, a “sharply detailed…funny book about a cinematic comedy of errors” (The New York Times): the making of the cult film phenomenon The Room.

In 2003, an independent film called The Room—starring and written, produced, and directed by a mysteriously wealthy social misfit named Tommy Wiseau—made its disastrous debut in Los Angeles. Described by one reviewer as “like getting stabbed in the head,” the $6 million film earned a grand total of $1,800 at the box office and closed after two weeks. Years later, it’s an international cult phenomenon, whose legions of fans attend screenings featuring costumes, audience rituals, merchandising, and thousands of plastic spoons.

Hailed by The Huffington Post as “possibly the most important piece of literature ever printed,” The Disaster Artist is the hilarious, behind-the-scenes story of a deliciously awful cinematic phenomenon as well as the story of an odd and inspiring Hollywood friendship. Actor Greg Sestero, Tommy’s costar and longtime best friend, recounts the film’s bizarre journey to infamy, unraveling mysteries for fans (like, who is Steven? And what’s with that hospital on Guerrero Street?)—as well as the most important question: how the hell did a movie this awful ever get made? But more than just a riotously funny story about cinematic hubris, “The Disaster Artist is one of the most honest books about friendship I’ve read in years” (Los Angeles Times).
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About the author

Greg Sestero is a French-American actor, producer, and writer. He costarred in the cult phenomenon The Room.

Tom Bissell is the author of several books and a winner of the Rome Prize and a Guggenheim Fellowship. He writes frequently for Harper’s and The New Yorker.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Simon and Schuster
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Published on
Oct 1, 2013
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Pages
288
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ISBN
9781451661200
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Entertainment & Performing Arts
Performing Arts / Film / History & Criticism
Social Science / Popular Culture
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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Tom Bissell is a prizewinning writer who published three widely acclaimed books before the age of thirty-four. He is also an obsessive gamer who has spent untold hours in front of his various video game consoles, playing titles such as Far Cry 2, Left 4 Dead, BioShock, and Oblivion for, literally, days. If you are reading this flap copy, the same thing can probably be said of you, or of someone you know.
 
Until recently, Bissell was somewhat reluctant to admit to his passion for games. In this, he is not alone. Millions of adults spend hours every week playing video games, and the industry itself now reliably outearns Hollywood. But the wider culture seems to regard video games as, at best, well designed if mindless entertainment.
 
Extra Lives is an impassioned defense of this assailed and misunderstood art form. Bissell argues that we are in a golden age of gaming—but he also believes games could be even better. He offers a fascinating and often hilarious critique of the ways video games dazzle and, just as often, frustrate. Along the way, we get firsthand portraits of some of the best minds (Jonathan Blow, Clint Hocking, Cliff Bleszinski, Peter Molyneux) at work in video game design today, as well as a shattering and deeply moving final chapter that describes, in searing detail, Bissell’s descent into the world of Grand Theft Auto IV, a game whose themes mirror his own increasingly self-destructive compulsions.
 
Blending memoir, criticism, and first-rate reportage, Extra Lives is like no other book on the subject ever published. Whether you love video games, loathe video games, or are merely curious about why they are becoming the dominant popular art form of our time, Extra Lives is required reading.


From the Hardcover edition.
A profound and moving journey into the heart of Christianity that explores the mysterious and often paradoxical lives and legacies of the Twelve Apostles—a book both for those of the faith and for others who seek to understand Christianity from the outside in.

“Expertly researched and fascinating… Bissell is a wonderfully sure guide to these mysterious men.… This is a serious book about the origins of Christianity that is also very funny. How often can you say that?” —The Independent 
 
Peter, Matthew, Thomas, John: Who were these men? What was their relationship to Jesus? Tom Bissell provides rich and surprising answers to these ancient, elusive questions. He examines not just who these men were (and weren’t), but also how their identities have taken shape over the course of two millennia.
 
Ultimately, Bissell finds that the story of the apostles is the story of early Christianity: its competing versions of Jesus’s ministry, its countless schisms, and its ultimate evolution from an obscure Jewish sect to the global faith we know today in all its forms and permutations. In his quest to understand the underpinnings of the world’s largest religion, Bissell embarks on a years-long pilgrimage to the supposed tombs of the Twelve Apostles. He travels from Jerusalem and Rome to Turkey, Greece, Spain, France, India, and Kyrgyzstan, vividly capturing the rich diversity of Christianity’s worldwide reach. Along the way, he engages with a host of characters—priests, paupers, a Vatican archaeologist, a Palestinian taxi driver, a Russian monk—posing sharp questions that range from the religious to the philosophical to the political.
 
Written with warmth, empathy, and rare acumen, Apostle is a brilliant synthesis of travel writing, biblical history, and a deep, lifelong relationship with Christianity. The result is an unusual, erudite, and at times hilarious book—a religious, intellectual, and personal adventure fit for believers, scholars, and wanderers alike.


From the Hardcover edition.
This companion to the New York Times bestselling book The Wes Anderson Collection takes readers behind the scenes of the Oscar®-winning film The Grand Budapest Hotel with a series of interviews between writer/director Wes Anderson and movie/television critic Matt Zoller Seitz.

Learn all about the film's conception, hear personal anecdotes from the set, and explore the wide variety of sources that inspired the screenplay and imagery—from author Stefan Zweig to filmmaker Ernst Lubitsch to photochrom landscapes of turn-of-the-century Middle Europe. Also inside are interviews with costume designer Milena Canonero, composer Alexandre Desplat, lead actor Ralph Fiennes, production designer Adam Stockhausen, and cinematographer Robert Yeoman; essays by film critics Ali Arikan and Steven Boone, film theorist and historian David Bordwell, music critic Olivia Collette, and style and costume consultant Christopher Laverty; and an introduction by playwright Anne Washburn. Previously unpublished production photos, artwork, and ephemera illustrate each essay and interview.

The Wes Anderson Collection: The Grand Budapest Hotel stays true to Seitz's previous book on Anderson's first seven feature films,The Wes Anderson Collection, with an artful, meticulous design and playful, original illustrations that capture the spirit of Anderson's inimitable aesthetic. Together, they offer a complete overview of Anderson's filmography to date.
Praise for the film, The Grand Budapest Hotel:

Four Academy Awards®, including Costume Design, Music - Original Score, and Production Design; Nine Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture, Directing, and Writing - Original Screenplay; Best Film - Musical or Comedy, Golden Globe Awards; Best Original Screenplay, BAFTA, WGA, NYFCC, and LAFCA Awards

Praise for the book, The Wes Anderson Collection:

“The Wes Anderson Collection comes as close as a book can to reading like a Wes Anderson film. The design is meticulously crafted, with gorgeous full-page photos and touches . . .”
—Eric Thurm, The A.V. Club

Also available from Matt Zoller Seitz: Mad Men Carousel, The Oliver Stone Experience, The Wes Anderson Collection: Bad Dads, andThe Wes Anderson Collection.
 


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