I grew up in Brentwood, California in a house designed and built by the architects Buff & Hensman for my father. The Riviera Country Club was at the end of our street and we would crawl through the fence and play football on one of the fairways which were very well maintained we thought. It seemed like quite a normal place to live and the people were nice. Many of them were celebrities which was not a word I would have understood at the time--I was just aware that a lot of my friends' parents and many of my neighbors were on television and in the movies. One of my friend's parents were Hugh Marlowe (all About Eve, The Day the Earth Stood Still) and K.T. Stevens (The Rifleman, The Young and the Restless) and it seemed I was always seeing one or the other of them on Perry Mason.
Very often, I would spend weekends at Jeffrey Marlowe's house and we'd watch Twilight Zone and stay up late. Dinners there were formal with Hugh sitting at the head of the table preparing each plate and passing it around the table. Jeffrey's mom was an elegant woman and--truth be told--I had a crush on her. Hugh had a workshop that was joined with a detached garage and it was memorable for me as he had Playboy centerfolds pinned to the wall. I thought that was extraordinary and not something that would have be countenanced by my step-mother who we thought of as Cruella DeVil from 101 Dalmatians. Many, many years later as I was walking through the Hamburger Hamlet restaurant in Brentwood--an adult, one might say--I heard a voice call out my name. It was K.T. Stevens, who I hadn't seen in ages, calling me to her table to say hello and chat. I'll never forget her.
On the subject of Playboy magazine, my next door school friend was stunned that I'd never seen a copy. I was stunned that he was stunned. A day or so after that conversation had taken place, I found myself playing in front of my house as his mother arrived home in her beige Thunderbird. She stopped near me, lowered the passenger window and called to me. "This is for you," she said handing me a brand new copy of the current Playboy. I didn't know what to say but managed a "Thank you" before she continued on to her own driveway. I think I was in the sixth grade at the time.
I remember going door-to-door asking neighbors if they had seen our lost dog. One of the doors opened to reveal Jane Powell (Alcoa Theatre, The Red Skelton Hour) in a bikini. She was the first woman I'd ever seen with so few clothes on and I almost forgot why I was there. She was quite a sight for this six year-old in those pre-cable TV, pre-Internet times.
We used to play in a tree-house fortress hidden away in the hill above the country club and below Sunset Boulevard. One day, a lot of men were searching through the wooded area. In the newspaper the next day, we learned that a woman had been murdered in her house just above us and that she had been found in her bathtub barefoot. I recall wondering at the time why the fact that she was barefoot was worth mentioning.
I pass through Brentwood from time to time and will stop at the Country Mart for the roasted chicken and fries with the seasoned salt. Most of the shops that were there have gone; some have been replaced by new ones. I wonder if those growing up there today find it all as magical as I did.
How to Shoot a Feature Film in 15 Days (And Survive to See Profits)
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Examples of Responsive Reactions
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Action/ReAction at Stella Adler
Point of Departure
A Series of ONE...
Stephen and Dragonuk
Stephen Mitchell webinar for Stage 32
Ferrari GTO 3987 at speed by Yan denes
Ray D. Shosay's Journal
Dispatches from a (junior) suite in Paris
Ray D. Shosay's Journal (excerpt)
"Saturday, January 27, 2007
They say you can fool some of the people all of the time. Accordingly, I think we should concentrate on this group initially. We can move on to the people you can only fool some of the time at a later date if we deem it necessary. I hope to hear back from my agent about this as soon as he's out of rehab, as I don't think my messages have been getting through."
Ignorance is Bliss by Stephen Mitchell
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Exerpt from Ignorance is Bliss
"Out of the corner of his eye, Martin saw Martha shift in her seat. She leaned forward, as though something was about to be decided. This caused her breasts to push up against the neckline of her dress in a way that couldn't be fully appreciated out of the corner of one’s eye. So, Martin turned his head to look directly into the abyss of her cleavage. He was vaguely aware that Murray was talking again."
Carrera Panamericana (1950-54)
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Ferrari GTO 3987
Elysée Wednesday: Drive!
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“You ought to meet Steve. The two of you have the same kind of Ferrari.”
Ferrari Berlinetta Lusso
One evening, I was enjoying a John le Carré novel and a glass of Bordeaux...
L'art de l'automobile
My first Lusso prior to restoration
It was only after Sinatra was gone...
Once upon a time...
Meeting Enzo Ferrari
I came across this on a late night stroll in Paris near the Louvre.
I bought Bentleys in England and Ferraris & Maseratis in Italy to re-sell in Los Angeles as a teenager. I met Enzo Ferrari, Juan Fangio and Steve McQueen. I 'grew up' on the set of Mission: Impossible and other episodic TV series of the era. For a few years, I owned a Ferrari GTO that is owned by Ralph Lauren today and valued at approximately $52M. I began my film career by writing, producing and directing Montmartre in Paris in French. I founded and ran a repertory company for film & TV for 20 years in Los Angeles. I created a TV series which had fans that included Marlon Brando. I authored the first new acting technique--Action/ReAction--that was not based on Stanislavski's Method. I am currently writing my third novel and shooting my spy thriller Exigence. If you can't make movies, live your life as though you were in one...