I visited the “King of the Road” set the night they were filming the opening drag race.
As the stunt drivers were settling behind the wheels of their respective cars, I asked director Tom Holland who was starting the race. He looked at me with a twinkle in his eye and yelled, “Wardrobe!”
We often think about what might have been.
What might have been had we married our high school sweethearts. What might have been had we chosen a different career. What might have been had we zigged instead of zagged….
And in my case what might have been had a film called Sunset Strip turned out differently.
Being rewritten is never fun, often painful. Unfortunately, in the day-to-day business of Hollywood it is becoming more and more commonplace.
In the case of “The Mask of Zorro” I was the first of what would ultimately be nine screenwriters who worked on the movie. Only four received credit.
Before I began writing the screenplay I logged more than 50 hours of taped interviews with two dozen individuals who were close to Jim Morrison (including his parents) and The Doors.
One of the most entertaining was with UCLA film school professor Ed Brokaw. Morrison and future band-mate Ray Manzarek had been students of his in the mid-1960s – as had I in 1981.
I was hugely influenced and inspired by the punk rock and art band explosion in Los Angeles in the early 1980s. During that time a number of bands began to weave Western imagery and country music elements into their music.
The notion of fatalistic urban punkers in a showdown with the vastness, beauty, and history of the American West amused and intrigued me.