Tragic Hollywood

Don Simpson (Producer) – bizarre sex life?

March 4, 2015 // 0 Comments

    Producer Don Simpson gets to speak a single line of dialogue in Days of Thunder (1990) as one of the racing car drivers named Aldo. His part was initially much larger, but he was such a dreadful actor that even he agreed his performance would have done serious damage to the picture if it was left in. The movie bombed at the box-office anyway, but it could be argued that it might [...]

Barbara La Marr – beautiful, dumb, dead at 30.

March 1, 2015 // 6 Comments

  Barbara La Marr died from tuberculosis on 30 January 1926, the day before her last picture, The Girl from Montmartre was released. MGM chose to make an announcement about the cause of death, saying it was brought about through ‘vigorous dieting’. Everyone knew that her addiction to morphine and other drugs, coupled with her boozing and partying, had destroyed her health years before. [...]

Dominique Dunne – murdered at 22.

March 1, 2015 // 0 Comments

Dominique Dunne played Dana Freeling, the eldest daughter in Poltergeist (1982). On 30 October 1982, just a few months after Poltergeist was released, she was strangled to death in her driveway by her ex-boyfriend, a chef named John Sweeney. Evidently, he had become enraged when she tried to end their relationship. The 22 year-old actress clung to life in a coma for five days before passing away [...]

Lana Clarkson – Spector’s victim.

March 1, 2015 // 6 Comments

  The small role of Mrs. Vargas, the wife of the school teacher in Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982), was filled by newcomer Lana Clarkson. She would go on to star in a few B-movies, among them Barbarian Queen in 1985, and guest star on several TV sit-coms. From all accounts she was an intelligent and understanding actress who went out of her way to treat fans with kindness and [...]

Brad Renfro – a wasted life

February 28, 2015 // 0 Comments

  Brad Renfro in The Client ( 1994 ) Author John Grisham did not want a professional Hollywood child actor, complete with phoney southern accent, to play the pivotal role of Mark Sway in The Client (1994). Enter the 11 year-old unknown Brad Renfro from Memphis, Tennessee. His only acting experience was in a school production, yet he beat out thousands of contenders for the part, including [...]

River Phoenix – a foolish waste?

February 19, 2015 // 0 Comments

      River boasted of losing his virginity to an eighteen year-old girl he met while making Stand by Me in early 1985. He told his parents and siblings of his intention to seduce her, so they erected a psychedelically painted tent in their back yard for the occasion. His ditzy mother described the ‘ceremony’ as a ‘beautiful experience’. Well, it might have been had he been [...]
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