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How I Made a Hundred Movies in Hollywood and Never Lost a Dime


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Roger Corman founded the film company AIP, and has directed and/or produced such low-budget classics as Attack of the Crab Monsters, The Little Shop of Horrors, The Raven, The Man with the X-Ray Eyes, The Wild Angels, The Trip, Night Call Nurses, Bloody Mama, Piranha, and many others.


Corman has had two careers in Hollywood. From 1955 to 1971, he produced and directed dozens of low-budget science fiction, horror, and action movies, all of them (as the title says) successful. That those films were in less respectable genres was not necessarily to his detriment; as he proudly points out, he was the youngest director given retrospectives at two film archives. In his second incarnation, Corman became an executive whose company nurtured young talent on more low-budget (and high-profit) products, as well as distributing films by Bergman, Fellini, and Truffaut. An amazing career, told here in a disarmingly modest fashion, with ``cameo'' comments from Corman alumni (Jack Nicholson, Martin Scorsese, Francis Coppola). Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 1/90.-- Thomas Wiener, formerly with ``American Film,'' Washington, D.C.

Independent filmmaker Corman ( The Beast ; The Little Shop of Horrors ) wrongly argues here that his is not ``one of the more significant careers in film history.'' Having helped launch directors Francis Ford Coppola, Peter Bogdanovich and Martin Scorsese, and actors Jack Nicholson, Bruce Dern and Sylvester Stallone, he is certainly one of the motive forces in American movies today. In this revealing autobiography, written with the coauthor of Papa John , Corman tells amazing tales of shooting full-length films in mere days with budgets under $100,000, and states his conviction that cinema is a fusion of art and money--which explains, he believes, why Americans do it so well. This account of Corman's life and career includes reminiscences by those who have worked with him: performers, directors, assistant producers, writers. The book is a significant contribution to the history of American movies. Photos not seen by PW. (May)

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