Welcome to WeeklyWilson.com, where author/film critic Connie (Corcoran) Wilson avoids totally losing her marbles in semi-retirement by writing about film (see the Chicago Film Festival reviews and SXSW), politics and books----her own books and those of other people. You'll also find her diverging frequently to share humorous (or not-so-humorous) anecdotes and concerns. Try it! You'll like it!
Among the notable folk that Connie has interviewed (partial list) are: David Morrell (3 times), William F. Nolan, Kurt Vonnegut, jr.; Joe Hill; Frederik Pohl; Anne Perry; Valerie Plame; Vanessa Redgrave; Michael Shannon;; Taylor Hackford; Jon Land and Liv Ullman. The interview subjects might be from the world of Hollywood or simply be much-read authors, but her interviews have run in newspapers for 61 years.
Tori Eldridge is the Anthony and Lefty Awards-nominated author of The Ninja Daughter, which was named one of the Best Mystery Books of the Year by the South Florida Sun Sentinel and awarded 2019 Thriller Book of the Year by Authors on the Air Global Radio Network. Her short stories appear in several anthologies and her screenplay “The Gift” earned a semi-finalist spot in the prestigious Academy Nicholl Fellowship.
Before writing, Tori performed as an actress, singer, dancer on Broadway, television and film. She is of Hawaiian, Chinese, Norwegian descent and was born and raised in Honolulu, where she graduated from Punahou School with classmate Barack Obama.
Tori holds a fifth-degree black belt in To-Shin-Do ninjustsu and has traveled the U.S. teaching seminars on the ninja arts, weapons, and women’s self-preservation.
Her second book in the Lily Wong series, “The Ninja’s Blade,” will be released September 1, 2020.
Join Tori and I as we discuss her books, her life, her trips to Shanghai, and her goals for the future on Thursday, July 16, from 7 to 8 (CDT), 5 p.m. from California for Tori.
Heather Graham Pozzessere will join me in roughly 4 hours on the podcast “Weekly Wilson” and we will all find out how a woman with 5 children can possibly write hundreds of novels in her spare time.
Heather has been turning out a prodigious amount of work since the 1980s, having retired from her previous jobs as a bartender and working as a back-up singer and in theater. (Heather has a degree in theater from the University of South Florida). We will possibly talk about the uptick in cases of the coronavirus in her fair state (over 3,000 new cases) and the news that the upcoming Republican National Convention is supposedly moving to Jacksonville from Charlotte, North Carolina.
Heather has won several prestigious awards. In 2003, she was given the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Romance Writers of America. She has also been awarded the Thriller Writer’s Silver Bullet for charitable enterprises. Heather also belongs to a number of Writers’ associations, notably among them the Horrors Writers Association and the Mystery Writers of America.
Krewe of Hunters: This series is a beautiful blend of romance and mystery. Key characters in the series are Jackson Crow and Angela Hawkins. Jackson is dogged by the death of two of his teammates. Angela on the other hand is an investigations officer who is endowed with paranormal abilities. She already has her hands full of mysteries to solve when another extremely intriguing death occurs, and she cannot resist the temptation to try and solve it. A senator’s wife is found dead, with all the evidence pointing to the fact that she jumped over a balcony. However, developments in the story make it probable that she was pushed over the balcony. Or is it the ghosts that inhibit this house that was once a torture house that lure the lady to jumping over the balcony? Angela and Jackson try to solve this mystery and in the midst of it all, they find themselves falling deeply in love. They are constantly risking not just their lives, but their immortal souls as well.
I’ve just finished reading “Seeing Darkness” so that novel, more than others, will be up for discussion, but we’ll also talk about when she writes, how she writes, how her writing or promoting might change in this time of the coronavirus and many other topics, including the aforementioned family members.
Should be fun! Tune in on the Bold Brave Media Global Network or Tune-In Radio at 7 p.m. (CDT) on Channel 100. I’ve had family members tell me that the channel kept waivering between 100 and 200. No idea about that. If you have a question, the call in number is 866-451-1451 and be prepared to hold for a rather long time to get in. (We love questions, but the commercial breaks’ ll kill you.) If you miss the program totally, you can go out to WeeklyWilson.com and find a button to replay the program, minus commercials, but it usually takes about 3 days for it to go up, so look for it by the first of the week at the earliest.
Spike O’Dell, former WGN and Quad City native and radio personality, was the guest on the hour-long podcast Weekly Wilson on Thursday, June 11th, from 7 to 8 p.m.
The hour-long podcast is carried by the Bold Brave Media Global Network and Tune-In Radio, Channel 100. [While the site says it is on at 8 p.m., that is Eastern Time and the “live” call-in format airs from 7 to 8 p.m., our time]. The taped shows are later posted on WeeklyWilson.com for listeners who missed the original airing.
Spike O’Dell, whose father was East Moline’s Chief of Police, began his career in radio at WEMO-AM in East Moline in 1976, moving on to a part-time job at WQUA-AM (now WXFN Sports) and, in 1978, KSTT-AM, where he dubbed the street outside KSTT’s studio “Twinkie Boulevard.”
Spike ruled the Quad City airwaves until 1987, with a brief stint at WBT-AM in Charlotte, North Carolina.
In July of 1987 Chicago’s Dan Fabian of WGN hired Spike away from the Quad Cities and he was on the air in Chicago from 1987 until December 12, 2008, when he retired young (55) and moved to Nashville with his family. His parting comment at his last show from the Metropolis Theater in Arlington Heights: “It was a good ride.”
Spike was voted Billboard Magazine’s Top 40 Personality of the Year for a medium market in 1987, and also received an award for Best Radio Afternoon Show in 1999. In addition to being a member of the UTHS Hall of Fame (2000), Spike was awarded the James A Lovell Failure Is Not An Option award in 2003. In 2014, he became a member of the WGN Radio Walk of Fame, paying tribute to his successful 22-year career at WGN in Chicago.
Spike confided that he had always planned to retire early. Going to bed at 7 p.m. so that he could get up by 5 a.m. to make it to work for WGN’s morning drive was something he did from 1987 until December of 2008. Now, he told me, “I only do what I want to do.”
What does he want to do? He paints—very well, in fact—has his HAM radio license, golfs, enjoys life with wife Karen and a host of grandchildren, who called him “Grand Dude,” at first, [and now just call him “Dude.”] When I asked hi if he would recommend his career to any aspiring D.J.’s, he did not think that was such a good idea.
We talked about his famous interviews with the likes of Michael Jordan, the Beatles, astronauts, and others. (His favorite was an astronaut; listen to the podcast to find out which one). We talked about the millions of dollars his creative ideas had raised for charity, involving such ideas as “Wham! Bam! Traffic Jam!” which gifted money to the Annie Wittenmeyer Home in Davenport, and the Bite Your Butt mustard that sold way more cases than anyone had anticipated.
I had to ask Spike about sharing the news of “Uncle Bobby’s” death on the air waves in Chicago when his predecessor in morning drive was killed in a tragic plane accident. Spike remembers it as one of the worst days of his life and says he felt “numb.” Naturally, the station was scooped by all other stations in the metro area, as they waited for Bobby Collins’ family members to be notified.
Spike has always been a fun-loving guy, and it was the fun going out of the job, somewhat, that caused him to walk out the door at the young retirement age of 55. He described various directives coming down from the top, instructing on-the-air personalities to try to become cookie cutter personalities and, as Spike himself admitted, “I’m a personality guy.” Various words were declared to be off-limits when on air. One was the word “degrees” when discussing the weather.
I thoroughly enjoyed chatting with Spike about his time on the air and, while we were on a commercial break and he was asking technician Sean about the extent of the seemingly unending commercial breaks, I happened to glance a foot to my right, at the wall in my basement where a bulletin board hangs on the wood paneling. There was a large black spider roughly the size of a silver dollar right in the middle of my bulletin board
This thing was BIG! It had to be at least 3 inches across, and, initially, I thought my husband was playing a prank and had pasted a “fake” Halloween spider on the bulletin board. It was perfectly in the middle of the billboard, which is plastered with a variety of white memos. (It really showed up well on those memos.) I had not noticed it until the final commercial break, and I was just about to reach over and touch it when it MOVED!
You have not seen a woman jump out of a desk chair faster. I could hear Sean answering Spike’s question about the commercials on the show and I also was thinking, “If I have to speak into that microphone, my head will only be about a foot away from that thing!” I’m not a lover of spiders. I think it is a fear that I have passed on to my children. I remember being 9 months pregnant with my second child and not being able to convince my son (then 19) to climb up and kill a giant spider that was in the corner above our TV set. (We compromised and vacuued it up with a long vacuum tube.)
If you listen to the podcast (posted here within the week), you will hear me coming back from break and thoroughly freaked out by this “spider the size of a Buick.” (“Annie Hall.” Thanks, Woody)
It was a good show, and I want to thank Spike (“At the Mike”) O’Dell for agreeing to spend an hour with me strolling down memory lane.
Please leave a comment on the Bold Brave Media Global Network page, (if you listen to it there) that urges them to compensate their interviewer, i.e., me. Seems only fair.
I am currently booking guests for my Thursday night podcast into August.
While my last post addressed the months of May (one week remaining) and June, here are those tentatively scheduled for June, July and August. This week’s author is Anita Oswald, author of “West Side Girl,” a nice companion to last week’s book “Redlined” by Linda Gartz, also about the West Garfield Park neighborhood in Chicago. (Linda’s book was the 2018 Chicago Writers’ Association Nonfiction Book of the Year.)
June 4, 2020: Guest will be Barbara Barnett, Chicago author of “The Apothecary’s Curse” who is promoting the sequel to that book, “Alchemy of Glass.” Barbara is a member of both HWA (Horror Writers’ Association) and SFWA (Science Fiction Writers of America).
June 11, 2020: Spike (“at the mike”) O’Dell, former WGN on-air radio personality.
June 18, 2020: Heather Graham, New York Times best-selling author of the Krewe of Hunters romantic/paranormal series, speaking about her newest book, “Seeing Darkness,” the Krewe of Hunters Book #30.
June 25, 2020: Suzie Quatro, prior to the release of the documentary on her life. Suzi was Joan Jett before there was a Joan Jett.
July 2, 2020: Anthony Whyte, owner/editor of www.TheMovieBlog.com, the 3rd most heavily consulted movie blog on the Internet.
July 9, 2020: Lance Taubold and Rich Devin of Las Vegas, Nevada, book publishers and authors at Invoke Books.
July 16, 2020: Tori Eldridge, author of “The Ninja Daughter” from Polis Books.
July 23, 2020: Quad City author Sean Leary, author of “The Arimathean” series and other books.
July 30, 2020: Dan Burns, Chicago Writers’ Association treasurer and Chicago film critic and screenwriter.
August 6, 2020: Iris Waichler, author of “Role Reversal: How to Take Care of Yourself and Your Aging Parents”
August 13, 2020: Jon Land, novelist (“The Caitlin Strong” series) and screenwriter.
Some of the above are subject to change and tentative, but this gives you somewhat of an idea who is scheduled in the future. I was working on an interview with Cathy Moriarty, but her agent has said the pandemic has caused her to “go to ground” and cancel all such appearances. I’m still waiting to hear back from Gary Cole’s representatives.
May 21st – My guest on Weekly Wilson, the podcast, at 7 p.m. (CDT) on Thursday was Linda Gratz, talking about her book “Redlined.” It was a fascinating hour.
May 28th – My guest this coming Thursday will be Anita Solick Oswald, author of “West Side Girl” ad a founding member of the Boulder Writing Studio. Anita and I will talk again about the same neighborhood that Linda Gratz grew up in during the fifties and the sixties, West Garfield Park. Linda’s memoir is a more lighthearted look at what she remembers fondly as a great childhood growing up the changing Chicago neighborhood.
June 4 – My guest on Thursday will be Barbara Barnett, author of “The Apothecary’s Curse” and “Alchemy of Glass.”
June 11 – My guest will be former WGN on-air radio personality Spike (“at the Mike”) O’Dell.
June 18 – My guest is scheduled to be New York Times Best-Selling author Heather Graham, author of the Krewe of Hunters romance/paranormal novels.
June 25 – Rock star Suzi Quatro is scheduled to be with me in advance of the documentary about her life. Suzi was Joan Jett before there was a Joan Jett.
Weekly Wilson of 4/30 with heart transplant survivor Jennifer Berliner brought in a record number of phone call questions.
There were 5 callers, [although one left line before we could get past the commercial to take the question].
One was from Colorado. I don’t know anyone in Colorado. One was from area code 301. (What state is that?)
Jennifer was the great guest I knew she’d be and we covered her cancer experiences (at age 15), her heart transplant, and the diabetes she currently fights. We also covered the costs associated with having a heart transplant, which Jennifer told me is her most popular YouTube video.
I jotted down just a few of the figures, with $640,000 for her hospitalization, $70,000 for the heart surgeon, $200,000 for the anaesthesiologist, and $80,000 for the cost of removing the donor’s heart and transferring it for transplant. She also mentioned the $35,000 a year that it costs for anti-rejection drugs and a total figure of $1.2 million. One of our callers wanted to know her out-of-pocket costs and we got figures that were in the $14,000 range for the first year.
The hour went by quickly, and I directed callers to Jennifer’s blog (www.anewheartrocks.com) and told them that it would be relatively easy to find the show when it is archived and goes up on my Weekly Wilson blog. (www.WeeklyWilson.com).
Next week’s guest is Dan Decker, AFI graduate, founder of the Chicago Screenwriting School, and author of the books Anatomy of a Screenplay: Writing the American Screenplay from Character Structure to Convergence and The Prime: The Dark Side of Light. Dan also holds dual Italian/United States citizenship and his brother is also an author.
Tonight’s guest on “Weekly Wilson,” Ed Dezevallos, the 75-year-old Executive Producer of “Lone Star Deception” (now streaming on Amazon) was my guest tonight at 7 p.m. CDT.
Ed was an especially great guest, as he could “take the ball and run with it” conversationally, and, therefore, you get to hear less of me and more of him. His accomplishments are many, including a number of real estate developments over his 50-year career. I regret that I didn’t get to hear the rest of Ed’s “bucket list,” but being involved in making a film was one of those “bucket list” wishes and he spent 2 years shepherding the Eric Roberts, Anthony Ray Parker film to the screen. Last week, I interviewed Eric and Eliza Roberts,both of whom played roles in the film.
The other project that Ed has supervised was one designed to help young people learn about a variety of careers. Called www.soyouwanttobe.org, we spoke about this colorful and useful series of videos. I tried to play its upbeat cheery theme song from my laptop—3 times. No dice. (I had warned my guest that, if it were a technical matter, it probably wouldn’t work.)
If you would like to hear an interesting story about becoming the Executive Producer of a film at 75, it is cued up for your entertainment. Check it out.
(L to R) Scott Wilson, Craig Wilson, Jessica Wilson, Stacey Wilson, Connie Wilson (seated).
It’s Easter Sunday and my family and I are still sheltering in place in Austin (TX).
On Thursday, April 9th, the long-awaited interview with Eric and Eliza Roberts went off without too many hitches, and you can hear it for yourself by clicking on the button on this page. The couple couldn’t have been more gracious, and I am hoping they call in to ask their Executive Producer, Ed Dezevallos, a question when I talk to him this coming Thursday at 7 p.m. (CDT) on Weekly Wilson, the podcast, on the Bold Brave Media Global Network. (7 p.m. to 8 p.m.; listed as 8 p.m. on the BoldBraveMedia.com page, because the engineers are in Long Island, NY).
Plans continue to be put forth and, so far, it appears that, after Ed Dezevallos on April 16th, the next week’s guest will be an epidemiologist in charge of the University of Texas at Austin, Dr. Bill Kohl, talking about the COVID-19 pandemic. Tune in and call in (866-451-1451). The last Thursday of April, Jennifer Berliner–who was featured in a big article in the Austin American Statesman recently—will give us some tips for sheltering in place. She has this down as a heart transplant recipient (www.anewheartrocks.com).
As we move into May, plans are much looser and still under discussion, but the tentative schedule has Dan Decker, author and founder of the Chicago Screenwriting School, on May 7; Michael Serrapica, an author and frequent guest with whom we discuss politics, on May 14th; Linda Gratz, author of “Redlined,” a story about Chicago’s housing policies that targeted black home owners; and Anita S. Oswald from Colorado, the author of “West Side Girl,” also a Chicago memoir.
In June, I’m working on shows with Suzie Quatro (June 4), Cathy Moriarty (“Raging Bull,” “Neighbors”) on June 11th and author Heather Graham on June 18th, but June is still under discussion and a long way away…or is it.
The upcoming guest list for the Weekly Wilson podcast on the Bold Brave Media Global Network, while subject to changes in these uncertain times, looks like this through mid-May:
April 2, Thursday, 7 p.m. CDT – Texas author Charlotte Canion will speak with Connie about her book, “You Have to Laugh to Keep from Crying,” which is about coping with elderly parents when you may have health issues of your own.
April 9, Thursday, 7 p.m., CDT – Film star Eric Roberts and his wife Eliza (also an actress) are re-scheduled after the shutdown of the network caused the cancellation. We’ll talk about Eric’s storied career, his role in “Lone Star Deception” and other topics of interest.
Eric Roberts & Anthony Ray Parker.
April 16, Thursday, 7 p.m., CDT – Ed Dezevallos, Executive Producer of “Lone Star Deception” and the force behind a series of instructional videos for young people called www.soyouwanttobe.org will drop by.
April 23, Thursday, 7 p.m., CDT – Dr Bill Kohl, an epidemiologist in charge of the University of Texas in Austin’s response to the Corona virus, will share insights and information.
April 30, Thursday, 7 p.m., CDT – Jennifer Berliner, heart transplant and cancer survivor and blogger (www.anewheartrocks.com) will share various tips regarding “sheltering in place” and remaining positive in the face of adversity. (Read up on Jennifer’s background at her blog)
May 7, Thursday, 7 p.m., CDT – TBA
May 15, Thursday, 7 p.m., CDT – Author Michael Serrapica returns to talk politics with Connie.
As always, listeners can find the podcast (Thursdays, 7 p.m. CDT on the Bold Brave Media Global Network) and phone in “live” at 866-451-1451.
The interview with Eric Roberts (up as podcast #3) saw me prepare an Introduction and some questions for the actor. It ended up being me talking “All About Eric” and speaking with the Executive Producer Ed Dezevallos about the film “Lone Star Deception,” but the actual interview was bumped.
Plans were to do the interview this week (3/19). Then, the Bold Brave Media Global network announced it was shutting down for an indefinite period of time….probably a week to two weeks.
Therefore, the answers to the questions were answered by film star Eric Roberts below. Hopefully, viewers stuck at home will check out “Lone Star Deception” on Amazon and—at some future point—perhaps we can make the Weekly Wilson podcast work out on audio
In the meantime, here are Eric Roberts’ answers to (some of) the questions I had planned to ask:
[From Eric Roberts: THE INTRODUCTION IS BEAUTIFUL! ]
ERIC ROBERTS – INTRO
“Lone Star Deception,” Eric Roberts, Anthony Parker.
Back in 1986, in an interview with Roger Ebert following his screen debut performance in “King of the Gypsies,” his break-through role, Ebert wrote: “Right from the beginning, Eric Roberts has had about him the promise of eventual greatness. The movie industry does not know how he will turn out, but he holds the potential to be mentioned with Brando and DeNiro and the others who come surrounded with the aura of a special talent.”
That feeling hit me like a ton of bricks as I watched “King of the Gypsies” back in 1978 as a twenty-something film critic,— one who had been on the job for 7 years.
I fully agree with Roger Ebert’s assessment of Eric Roberts’ talent. I echo Academy-Award winning actress Sandy Dennis, who said of Eric after they appeared together onstage, “Oh, my God, this actor! I think he is the next big thing,— if he can get the material.”
Eric’s performance in “King of the Gypsies earned him a Golden Globe nomination for the Best ActingDebut by an Actor (1979). Eric would go on to earn another Golden Globe nomination in 1984 for “Star 80” and a third Golden Globe nomination, plus an Oscar nomination as Best Supporting Actor (in support of Jon Voight) for “Runaway Train.” 1984 gave us “The Pope of Greenwich Village,” with Eric paired with Mickey Rourke. He was awarded the Theater World Award in 1987 for the Best Broadway debut for his work in “Burn This.” Eric has been quoted as saying, “The joy is in the doing.”
Every one of these films is indicative of the power and creativity that Eric Roberts brings to his work. He has another 29 wins and 17 nominations for a variety of film awards. Eliza Roberts—herself an actress and Eric’s wife of 28 years—said of her husband’s work, “Sit tight, because, even when you’re shit, you’re fucking awesome, Eric.”
Sometimes called “the hardest-working actor in America,” Eric now has an absolutely stunning 569 credits on the International Movie Data Base, making him the hardest-working actor in Hollywood.
Eric Roberts & Anthony Ray Parker.
Eric’s schedule, as Eliza will attest, is crazy. It sometimes has him moving between 3 sets at once. He has close to 70 projects in development in 2020 or 2021. To give you a sense of how absolutely amazing that number of credits is, (outside of Bollywood), Leonardo DiCaprio, who has only 55 IMDB credits to his name, has said of Eric “Ericis a god. He’s THE MAN.” By comparison, Brad Pitt has 56. Susan Sarandon, who co-starred with Eric in 1978’s “King of the Gypsies”— and is known to work quite frequently, herself,— has 160 credits
One of Eric’s most recent films, “Lone Star Deception” is the story of a race for Governor in Texas, with Anthony Ray Parker as a black candidate for Governor. Eric is central to the plot, playing Bill Sagle, a King-maker who was originally backing his nephew, until his nephew is compromised by a sex-tape that surfaces, complete with a demand for hush money. The nephew is forced (by Eric’s Bill Sagle character) to step down and a black candidate with combat credentials is drafted to run in his place. The co-star is Anthony Ray Parker who appeared in both “The Matrix” and “The Marine” and has 54 IMDB credits to his name, himself. The log-line says, “Fear, Greed and Texas Politics,” which seemed like a good topic right about now, nationwide.
I am very grateful to have such a busy couple able to call in for some talk about both this film, which is about to release on Amazon (as well as FixFling, InDemand, Vudu, Fandango and to overseas markets —(which could be rough with the recent news that all of China’s 60 to 70,000 cinemas are closed due to the Corona virus.)
I’m hoping that Eric and Eliza can tell us a bit more about “Lone Star Deception” and talk about his storied career and their work together.
Welcome to you both and thank you for being with me.
ERIC/ELIZA ROBERTS Questions
“Lone Star Deception” (available on Amazon) with Eric Roberts and Anthony Ray Parker.
1_ You have close to 70 projects scheduled for 2020/2021. How do you manage to work in that many films at once?
E.R.: IT’S ALL ABOUT CREATIVE AND PRECISE, YET FLEXIBLE SCHEDULING. YOU HAVE TO BELIEVE ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE.
2) How difficult is it to memorize that much dialogue and remember it all, when you’re working with so many different films at once?
E.R.: IT’S GREAT MENTAL EXERCISE, SO I APPROACH IT LIKE WORKING OUT.
3) You were offered “9 and ½ Weeks” but turned it down. Are there any other roles you were offered, but ended up not taking? Did you ever wish you had taken those roles?
E.R.: AN OFFICER AND A GENTLEMAN, AMERICAN GIGOLO…BASICALLY MOST OF WHAT RICHARD GERE AND JOHN TRAVOLTA DID IN THEIR EARLY YEARS.
ALSO CLIFFHANGER, WHICH ENDED UP GOING TO JOHN LITHGOW. I HOPE I’VE MADE UP FOR UNFORTUNATE TURN-DOWNS NOW.
4) Eliza: your father, I read, wrote the scripts for “Three Days of the Condor” and “The Firm” (David Rayfiel). You also knew John Landis, who offered you your part of Brunella in “Animal House.” Did you grow up in Hollywood? If so, has your insider knowledge of the industry helped?
E.R.: I DID SCHLOCK AND ANIMAL HOUSE WITH JOHN LANDIS, AND HE’S REMAINED A FRIEND ALWAYS. I THINK GROWING UP IN THE INDUSTRY AND HAVING AN INTIMATE KNOWLEDGE OF THIS WORLD HAS HELPED IMMENSELY.
“Lone Star Deception”
5) Eliza, you met Eric on a plane with your dad’s script for “Intersection” in your lap. Have there been any projects, past, present or future, where you’ve been involved in writing a script just for Eric ? (Secondary mention of cats, since Eric, you said, had a cat, Tender, on his lap at the time).
E.R.: YES, I HAD A SCRIPT ON MY LAP AND ERIC HAD BOTH A SCRIPT AND A CAT ON HIS LAP.
I HAVE DONE A LOT OF SCRIPT POLISHING FOR ERIC. I HAD A SENSE OF WHAT WORKS FOR HIM, AND MOST PRODUCTIONS ARE OPEN TO IT.
6) Eric, How did you come to be involved in “Lone Star Deception?” (I talked to Executive Producer Ed DeZavellos on 3/12 and hope to again in the future.)
E.R.: I CAN’T REMEMBER FULLY, BUT I KNOW SOME VERY NICE, PASSIONATE PEOPLE MADE US BOTH AN OFFER. ELIZA IS IN LONE STAR DECEPTION, TOO. WE WERE INTRIGUED AND SAID YES.
“Lone Star Deception”
7) “In my estimation, Eric is a great actor…an extremely unique presence trapped in this beautiful exterior.” “The way that Mickey Rourke was re-discovered as a great actor, I think Eric is due for that, for sure. So much of the business is luck and timing.” (David Duchovny)
Given those glowing words from a fellow actor, and Mickey Rourke’s film “The Wrestler” (which should have won him the Oscar in 2008), what directors now working would you like to work with? Any potential star vehicles in the pipeline?
E.R.: I VERY MUCH WISH AND LONG FOR SUCH A VEHICLE. HOW PRECIOUS THAT WOULD BE.
I CAN’T TELL YOU HOW MUCH THE COMMENTS OF THESE FELLOW ACTORS MEAN.
8)_ Nowadays, it seems that even extremely good actors like Robert Downey, Jr., want to play a Super Hero to cash in on the Marvel Universe films or to have a series built around them. It is as though there is the series comic book Hollywood and indie film Hollywood. You’ve watched the industry as an insider for a long time. What are your thoughts on the films you see coming out of Hollywood now, versus when you were starting out (1978)?
E.R. : TRENDS IN ART AND IN EVERYTHING, ARCHITECTURE, FASHION, EVERYTHING, TEND TO CHANGE. MOVIES MADE PEOPLE HAPPY IN 1978, AND THEY MAKE PEOPLE HAPPY TODAY.
SOME OF THE MARVEL MOVIES ARE VERY CLEVERLY WRITTEN AND GO WAY BEYOND THEIR GENRE.
I DON’T HAVE A PARTICULAR LOVE FOR THE SUPER HERO FILMS, BUT MANY PEOPLE DO, AND BECAUSE OF THAT, I’D LOVE TO BE A PART OF IT.
10) Throwing out some names that I know mean something to you, can you share with us a little bit about what it was like working with Sterling Hayden…..Mickey Rourke…..Jon Voight…Bob Fosse…and, of course, Anthony Ray Parker. (Take your pick and add any others you wish).
I LEARNED SO MUCH FROM STERLING. WHAT A CHARACTER! I ADORE MICKEY, AND HE AMAZES ME. IT WAS FANTASTIC WORKING WITH JON. BOB FOSSEE WAS ARGUABLY THE BEST DIRECTOR I WAS EVER DIRECTED BY.
Anthony Ray Parker.
WE HAD AN INCREDIBLE TIME WORKING WITH ANTHONY RAY PARKER. HE’S A GREAT ACTOR AND HE’S A GREAT MAN.
11) “Lone Star Deception” Credits: “We would like to thank our pyro technicians for not blowing up the entire city. (Houston) [Comments?]
HILARIOUS! AND TRUE.
12) You were in a bad car accident in 1981. Please tell the listeners about that and its after-effects at the time?
E.R.: WELL, IT WAS A LOT LIKE THE FILM “REGARDING HENRY”.
I CRASHED IN MY JEEP AND WAS IN A COMA FOR 72 HOURS AND, EVEN THOUGH I WAS PHYSICALLY ALIVE, IT MADE ME FEEL FOREVER DIFFERENT IN MYRIAD WAYS.
13) Don Okolo, the credited director for “Lone Star Deception” is Don Okolo. (“Blood ‘n Destiny” – 2009, $500,000; “The Land” – 2011, $200,000; “Gem of the Rainforest” – 2013 – $200,000). Have you ever wanted to direct?
ELIZA IS A SUPER GIFTED DIRECTOR AND I LOVE BEING DIRECTED BY HER AND WOULD CO-DIRECT WITH HER.
14) Lines from the film: “So little nieces, so little time.” “Politicians tell the voters what they want to hear.” Why was the main character (Tim Bayh, the black candidate for Governor) put in charge of personally paying off the various wrongdoers, such as those who kidnap his daughter Carol. Aren’t there less visible henchmen who could have been hired to carry the $50,000 to pay off “Sloane?” (That puzzled me)
E.R.: TIM HAD MORE AT STAKE. BUT THAT’S A GOOD QUESTION AND REALLY A QUESTION FOR ED.
“It was always about the money, Charlie.” (Any thoughts on the politics of today IRL?)
“Lone Star Deception”
E.R.: IT SEEMS WHEN YOU BOIL IT DOWN, EVERYTHING IS ABOUT THE MONEY.
15) “I’ll be taking a break when I die.”
E.R.: YES, SOUNDS LIKE ME!
16) “The hardest person to protect yourself from is yourself.”
E.R.: I BELIEVE THAT.
17) Daughter, Emma; Morgan and Keaton (musician). Currently working in the industry, or…?
E.R.: ALL IN THE INDUSTRY.
18) “Why me, of all the guys, of all the has-beens, of all the good actors who are over—why me?” (1/31/2018 to Sam Kashner for Vanity Fair.)
E.R.: WHY ME? IS NOT A RHETORICAL QUESTION. IT’S ABOUT UNDERSTANDING OUR PART IN OUR LIVES. THE MOST IMPORTANT PART WE PLAY.
19) Your favorite Batman?
E.R.: MICHAEL KEATON.
20) Your favorite Joker actor in the “Batman” films?
E.R.: JACK NICHOLSON
21) Anything you’d like to talk about that I haven’t asked you about?