From Publishers Weekly
"Cassavetes' films were quarried from his most private feelings and experiences," writes editor Ray Carney in his introduction to Cassavetes on Cassavetes, and then illustrates his point with the writings, interviews and recorded conversations of a beloved cult figure. First an actor and then a director (Faces; A Woman Under the Influence), John Cassavetes, who died in 1989, remains known for gamely trying to make his art in Hollywood, and then gamely wreaking havoc when he was overrided. Of his television series, Staccato (later called Johnny Staccato at the insistence of network executives), the director said: "It is virtually impossible to get approval on a script that has substance." Fans and film buffs will delight in this rare look inside the mind of this talented, innovative and influential filmmaker. Photos.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
From Library Journal
Cassavetes alternated routine acting work with efforts to mount and direct low-budget personal films, often starring wife Gena Rowlands and friends like Peter Falk and Ben Gazzara. Rejecting the label of intellectual, Cassavetes considered himself an intuitive, streetwise filmmaker. Though his films would never reach a mass audience, he loved the collaborative, creative process of making movies, and his work continues to influence Martin Scorsese, Oliver Stone, and others active in U.S. cinema. Sadly, a lifetime of heavy drinking led to Cassavetes's premature death of liver disease in 1989. This book, edited by Carney (film and American studies, Boston Univ.; The films of John Cassavetes) and based on extensive interviews, is the autobiography Cassavetes might have written. Cassavetes was a self-described "bigmouth" and "troublemaker" as well as a prolific writer and talker. In this book, he discusses his actor's beginnings, honing his craft in the golden age of live television drama, and his growing disenchantment with the studio system. He expounds on improvisation, shaping a film performance, favorite themes of love and marriage, and the eternal problems of independent film distribution. Reading this book is like attending an extended master class at the Actor's Studio, a reminder of a rebellious spirit sadly missed. Recommended for independent-film collections. Stephen Rees, Levittown Regional Lib., PA
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.