Hollywood’s Second Coming

By Brad Darrach Playboy, June 1972 Roaring like a stegosaurus, a yellow monster crashed into a green country store and knocked the front out. A church spire tilted silently and fell off like a hat. Bricks exploded, dust hid the sun. With a flash and a boom, a big...

Sellavision

By Bill Zehme Playboy, June 1987 Ralph Kramden, a bus driver from Brooklyn, was the father of TV home shopping. He called it Better Living Through Television and hatched a portentous scheme from which an unstoppable movement has followed. For $200, he had acquired...

Bellevue

By Stacy Title New York Woman, 1990 Bellevue Hospital, on East 27th Street, has a staff of over 6,000 doctors, technicians, nurses and orderlies. The hospital’s medical facilities are among the best in the city. It boasts three emergency rooms and 134 out-patient...

Ivana, the Survivor

By Elizabeth Kaye The New York Times, May 10, 1992 Ivan Zelnickova Trump never objected to personifying the salient maxim of the 1980’s, which was that everything worth anything could be bought. Her faith in this dainty precept was even more unwavering than that of...

The Betrayal of Michael Levine

By Mark Kram Esquire, March 1991 With eyes closed, no chop and plenty of silk, Michael Levine plays late at night on his tenor sax, the counterpoint of distant car horns and sudden voices trading muffugs while passing beneath the open window. Curious, how the sound of...

Big Shot

By Peter Richmond GQ, August 2002 He steers the van over the rolling folds of county Route 579, a two-lane road flanked by fields once neatly tilled and sown, now increasingly given over to development. But the landscape still carries the flavor of open country in the...

Jack Finds His Queen of Hearts

By Brad Darrach People, July 8, 1985 When Jack Nicholson and Anjelica Huston finally appeared together onscreen in the 1985 black comedy Prizzi’s Honor—the second-to-last movie directed by her father, John—they brought years of subtext as one of Hollywood’s glam...

The Challenger and the Muslims

By Dick Schaap The New York Herald Tribune, January 23, 1964 When he was 18 years old, just an amateur fighter with almost no reputation outside his native Louisville, Cassius Marcellus Clay came to New York and, on the corner of 125th St. and Seventh Ave, by the...

Matthau’s Love for the Long Shot

By Brad Darrach People, July 1, 1974 “I thoroughly disapprove of gambling,” actor Walter Matthau explains primly as he whooshes toward Hollywood Park racetrack in his bronze Mercedes at 80 mph. “But I’m too rich and it’s good for me to lose.” He chuckles wickedly,...

Splendor in the Short Grass

By Grover Lewis Rolling Stone, 1971 Flying west, through Texas, you leave Dallas-Fort Worth behind and look out suddenly onto a rolling, bare-boned, November country that stretches away to the horizon on every side—a vast, landlocked Sargasso Sea of mesquite-dotted...