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

Simon and Schuster
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Published on
Oct 1, 2013
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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
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.
Tom Bissell
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.
Greg Stetero
En 2003, l'acteur Greg Sestero participe sans le savoir à un futur film-culte...

Lorsque Greg Sestero, 19 ans, fait la connaissance d’un certain Tommy Wiseau dans une école d’acteurs de San Francisco, il est immédiatement fasciné par les improvisations délirantes de ce personnage improbable. Un face-à-face sur scène va changer leur vie à tous les deux. Ensemble, ils prennent une décision : partir pour Hollywood, et devenir des stars ! Un chemin semé d’embûches, qui démarre par des essais calamiteux, et une spirale de refus. Tommy Wiseau décide de reprendre leur destin en main et se lance dans la réalisation d’un film autofinancé à 100%. Le titre : The Room. Le script : incompréhensible.
Les acteurs : lui et son copain Greg. Le tournage : chaotique. Malgré l’incompréhension d’une équipe dont il vire régulièrement chaque membre récalcitrant, Tommy Wiseau est persuadé de réaliser son chef-d’oeuvre. Si bien qu’une fois le film terminé, il s’offre une publicité géante sur Highland Avenue et une avant-première de rêve. Le résultat ? Un bide retentissant, et à peine deux semaines à l’affiche.

Un témoignage inédit sur les coulisses de l'un des plus grands nanars contemporains.


Tommy Wiseau a toujours été excentrique dans ses tenues vestimentaires. Mais, en cette soirée de la fin de l'été 2002, aux abords du Palm Restaurant d'Hollywood, tout le monde, y compris les mannequins, les badauds, les travestis, et les artistes liftés, se retournait sur lui. Les gens ne pouvaient pas s’empêcher de le regarder ; moi-même, je ne pas pouvais m’empêcher de le regarder. Et même aujourd’hui, dix ans plus tard, je revois encore la tenue de Tommy : des lunettes teintées, un blazer foncé aussi lâche et ample qu’un ciré, un pantalon cargo couleur sable aux poches remplies au maximum de leur capacité (faisait-il de la contrebande de pommes de terre ?), un marcel blanc, d’imposantes rangers gothiques, et deux ceintures. Oui, deux ceintures.


Greg Sestero (né en 1978) est un acteur, mannequin et producteur américain. Il joue le rôle de Mark, l'un des personnages principaux du film The room. The disaster artist est paru aux États-Unis en 2013.

Tom Bissell (né en 1974) est un journaliste, écrivain et critique américain.
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