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“[A] boisterous account of four of Hollywood’s wildest leading men” (The Times, London).
“I don’t know what people expect when they meet me. They seem to be afraid that I’m going to piss in the potted palm and slap them on the ass.” —Marlon Brando
“I should have been dead ten times over. I believe in miracles. It’s an absolute miracle that I’m still around.” —Dennis Hopper
“You only lie to two people in your life: your girlfriend and the police.” —Jack Nicholson
“The best time to get married is noon. That way, if things don’t work out, you haven’t blown the whole day.” —Warren Beatty
They’re the baddest bad-asses Hollywood has ever seen: Marlon Brando, Dennis Hopper, Warren Beatty, and Jack Nicholson. They are men to whom rules did not apply; normal standards of behavior were simply too wearisome to worry about. These are men who brawled, boozed, snorted, and screwed their way into celebrity legend—but along the way they changed acting and the way movies were made forever. Hollywood Hellraisers is a whistle-stop tour of jaw-dropping sexual activity, misbehavior of an Olympic standard, all-out excess, and genuine madness. It’s a wonder Hollywood survived.
Sellers, a U.K. film writer and author of Hellraisers (on the lives of Richard Burton, Peter O'Toole, Richard Harris, and Oliver Reed), turns his attention to the careers of another four "bad boys." A paragraph describing Brando on Broadway in A Streetcar Named Desire as "some women in the audience began hyperventilating" establishes the tabloid approach: what follows is a recounting of acid dreams, bad trips, amorous encounters, bedroom escapades, failed film projects, "creative differences" turned hostile, and family tragedies. Numerous pages detail the charismatic charm and sexual stamina of Beatty and Nicholson. The young Brando, according to Elia Kazan, was "a fuck machine," ending his life as a recluse whose 'eccentricities took on a sinister tone." During years of "self-destructive hedonism,'' the wild-haired Hopper was a rebel, yet he survived to become part of the establishment, "almost Hollywood royalty, revered, iconic." Stirring together familiar and unfamiliar anecdotes switching back and forth between actors with little transition Sellers adds to the mix interviews he conducted with Hollywood insiders. 24 b&w photos.