Jonathan Demme’s Offbeat America

By James Kaplan The New York Times Magazine March 27, 1988 In a dim room high above the controlled chaos of Times Square, Jonathan Demme is watching a movie. To be more precise, the director is looking over the shoulder of his film editor, Craig McKay, at an editing...

“May I Kiss You on the Forehead, Sam?”

By Jon Bradshaw New York December 29, 1975/January 5, 1976 It was practically dawn and the weather, he noted with particular pique, was diabolic. On mornings like these, he preferred to rise late. He liked to walk down to the Yale Club and play a little squash. He...

Oedipus Rocks

By John Eskow New Times May 29, 1978 Karl Wallenda plunges to his death, and the man beside me booms out “Gawd!” In the slow-motion TV replay, Wallenda’s last-second grab for the wire seems to sum up everyone’s will to live, in one gesture. Then he falls. It’s a...

A Comedian of Guilt

By Albert Goldman Life Feb. 7, 1969 The publication of a book is not often a major event in American culture. Most of our classics, when they first appeared, met with disappointing receptions, and even the much-ballyhoed best-sellers of recent years have rarely cut a...

Catherine the Great

By Joan Juliet Buck Vanity Fair April, 1989 “Do you blow your money? I mean, just blow it?” she asked. “There’s a vertigo in going too far—the thrill that produces—especially if it’s likely to put you in an impossible situation. And then, cash worries are easier to...

The Many Faces of Arianna

By Steve Oney Los Angeles Magazine October 2004 On a July evening several days before the opening of the Democratic Party’s national convention in Boston, Arianna Huffington steers Dr. Justin A. Frank through a throng of people packing the hallway of her $7 million...

Swifty Lazar Is a Big Deal

By Jennifer Allen New York Magazine July 18, 1983 The beautiful lady and the reporter sit facing each other on wicker sofas in the lady’s small but elegant Los Angeles office. They are silent, sheepish, like schoolgirls who have been collared in the hall by a teacher...

Sympathy for the Devil

By Lawrence Wright Rolling Stone September 5, 1991 Is the Devil real? This certainly looks like the Evil One himself getting out of a black Jaguar and coming through the glass doors of a restaurant with a blonde on his arm. It’s an interesting proposition and one...

Annabella Sciorra Surveys Life After Success

By Helen Dudar The New York Times October 4, 1992 To anyone who has been keeping a careful watch, it would seem as if Annabella Sciorra has been making movies almost without pause. In fewer than four years, she has appeared in seven films, in small and large roles,...

The First Church of Rednecks, White Socks and Blue Ribbon Beer

By Lawrence Wright Rolling Stone December 13th-27th, 1990 “I had meant to time the closing of the door with a subtle emission of a fart,” my guru said as he pulled shut the door to his room at the Holiday Inn in Oxford, Mississippi. “Evidently my timing was off.” He...

The End of The Game

By Stephen Fried Fame May, 1990 Peter Beard is trying to organize another expedition. This one promises to be far tamer than any of the African safaris, walkabouts, and fact-finding missions he’s pulled off as cameraman, artist, adventurer, playboy, doomsayer,...

Who the Devil Is Fred Rogers?

By John Sedgwick WigWag November, 1989 Up close, the set for Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood seems to belong to a high school stage production, not to a television show beamed out to 290 stations across the United States. Erected in spacious Studio A of Pittsburgh’s...