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James Robert Parish: Articles


Claudette Colbert Career & Lesbian Rumors: Q&A with Veteran Author James Robert Parish

Claudette Colbert, Paramount star Those who remember Claudette Colbert, Turner Classic Movies' “Summer Under the Stars” featured player today, will likely picture a woman raising her skirt so as to hitch a ride in Frank Capra's 1934 Academy Award-winning comedy It Happened One Night. After all, Colbert's left leg immediately succeeds where Clark Gable's left thumb failed. Colbert, however, could get her way without having to resort to displaying her ankle to helpless oncoming drivers. In fact, during her nearly three decades as a film star – a film superstar during more than half that period – Colbert almost invariably got her way in both dramas and comedies, whether in modern dress or in period costumes. All she needed to […]


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Claudette Colbert Career & Lesbian Rumors: Q&A with Veteran Author James Robert Parish



'The Hollywood Book of Extravagance': Q&A with Author James Robert Parish

The Hollywood Book of Extravagance. How do you write something with that sort of title without falling into the trap of sensationalism or cheap journalism? And could you say something about the formatting of your text – the mini-bios divided into specific chapters – and what you wanted to accomplish with it? To my mind sensationalism is presenting a story/narrative/whatever without backing up the presentation with both solid facts and the author's stated interpretation of the given facts. Hopefully, in The Hollywood Book of Extravagance, I have avoided tabloid journalism by providing compact but in-depth studies of each individual documented within the volume. As with my other entries in The Hollywood Book of series (The Hollywood Book of Death and […]


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'The Hollywood Book of Extravagance': Q&A with Author James Robert Parish



Mel Brooks Biography: Q&A with James Robert Parish

James Robert Parish, author of countless film books (The RKO Gals, Fiasco: A History of Hollywood's Iconic Flops), answers a few questions on the subject of his upcoming biography, It's Good to Be the King: The Seriously Funny Life of Mel Brooks (Wiley, 2007). Many comedians are supposed to be major bores when they're not “on.” Does Mel Brooks fit into that mold? Over the decades, few people (beyond Brooks' family and very close friends) have ever witnessed Mel when he is not “on.” He considers it his lifelong duty to be entertaining both on camera and off. Whether bantering on a TV talk show, parrying with a dour waiter in a deli, or directing his cast/crew on the film […]


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Mel Brooks Biography: Q&A with James Robert Parish