Stories

TOWNE

I had just won a cinematography award and Hannah asked me for a favor. Robert Towne wanted to do a screen test of two actresses for a film he was doing or was pitching or was about to be doing.  It was going to be the first film he was to direct and I guess he …

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Paella

On my second tour of living (?) in New York, I fell in love with the Spanish Restaurant, El Faro, in The Village, Greenwich and Horatio. The place transported you.  All the waiters were Spanish and spoke with Castilian accents, ‘th.’ The food seemed authentic but what did I know. My favorite dish there was Paella Valenciana, although …

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VW RT 66

I was doing a road film on Rte 66 and got a call to do an electric truck commercial for Cummins Diesel. I tried to sell the idea of the death of gasoline and conventional fuels as part of the campaign. The idea fell flat on its ass. No interest, but lo and behold they used the …

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Lunch with George & Ed

Ed McCabe and I were having lunch and Ed said that he and George Lois were upset that the FOUR SEASONS restaurant in New York was closing. Those two had done a lot of business there and the place was a landmark. Somehow, the notion of George and Ed having a last lunch like in the …

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WILL WORK FOR FOOD (VENICE)

WILL WORK FOR FOOD I discovered Venice by accident. I was traveling from Milan to Vienna on a tour of concert halls, La Scala, then to the Vienna State Opera House for the famous New Year’s Concert. The plane from Milan to Vienna was cancelled so I decided to drive to Venice, spend the night, then drive …

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Hotels

Back in the day, I always stayed at great hotels, THE BEVERLY HILLS in Los Angeles, THE ST. REGIS in New York, THE CONNAUGHT in London, LE BRISTOL in Paris, and DANIELI in Venice.  I always stayed in a bungalow at THE BEVERLY HILLS. I was spending a great deal of time in Los Angeles filming …

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Miller Time

I was filming a mindless Miller Beer spot in Louisana. All Miller wanted were scenes of interesting people (no women) having a beer at sunset. This spot was about a few guys on airboats. We were shooting on a bayou near Lake Charles in mangroves. The strange thing was that the tide shifted rapidly in the relatively …

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The Plumber

I’ve already spoken about ‘scripts’ and how ridiculous most are. On the two films I’ve done, the writers simply didn’t know what the fuck they were writing about. They just put pen to paper for money. Don’t take my word for this (cliché). Here’s what Larry McMurtry had to say. ‘One thing that continues to amaze me about …

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DIRTY DIANA

I had a huge fight with the record company about the video. They wanted to pull the footage and edit themselves because the idea for the video was for Michael to become a rocker. That’s why Steve Stevens was in there (with his twenty thousand dollar suit). I’m not sure what the issues were but the record …

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