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Terry Southern

Terry Southern

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Terry Southern was an American author, essayist, screenwriter
Screenwriter
Screenwriters or scriptwriters or scenario writers are people who write/create the short or feature-length screenplays from which mass media such as films, television programs, Comics or video games are based.-Profession:...

 and university lecturer, noted for his distinctive satirical style. Part of the Paris postwar literary movement in the 1950s and a companion to Beat
Beat generation
The Beat Generation refers to a group of American post-WWII writers who came to prominence in the 1950s, as well as the cultural phenomena that they both documented and inspired...

 writers in Greenwich Village
Greenwich Village
Greenwich Village, , , , .in New York often simply called "the Village", is a largely residential neighborhood on the west side of Lower Manhattan in New York City. A large majority of the district is home to upper middle class families...

, Southern was also at the center of Swinging London
Swinging London
Swinging London is a catch-all term applied to the fashion and cultural scene that flourished in London, in the 1960s.It was a youth-oriented phenomenon that emphasised the new and modern. It was a period of optimism and hedonism, and a cultural revolution. One catalyst was the recovery of the...

 in the sixties and helped to change the style and substance of American films in the 1970s. In the 1980s he wrote for Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live is a live American late-night television sketch comedy and variety show developed by Lorne Michaels and Dick Ebersol. The show premiered on NBC on October 11, 1975, under the original title of NBC's Saturday Night.The show's sketches often parody contemporary American culture...

and lectured on screenwriting at several universities in New York.

Southern's dark and often absurdist style of satire
Satire
Satire is primarily a literary genre or form, although in practice it can also be found in the graphic and performing arts. In satire, vices, follies, abuses, and shortcomings are held up to ridicule, ideally with the intent of shaming individuals, and society itself, into improvement...

 helped to define the sensibilities of several generations of writers, readers, directors and film goers. He is credited by journalist Tom Wolfe
Tom Wolfe
Thomas Kennerly "Tom" Wolfe, Jr. is a best-selling American author and journalist. He is one of the founders of the New Journalism movement of the 1960s and 1970s.-Early life and education:...

 as having invented New Journalism
New Journalism
New Journalism was a style of 1960s and 1970s news writing and journalism which used literary techniques deemed unconventional at the time. The term was codified with its current meaning by Tom Wolfe in a 1973 collection of journalism articles he published as The New Journalism, which included...

 with the publication of "Twirling at Ole Miss" in Esquire in 1962, and his gift for writing memorable film dialogue was evident in Dr. Strangelove, The Loved One
The Loved One (film)
The Loved One is a 1965 black comedy film about the funeral business in Los Angeles, which is based on The Loved One: An Anglo-American Tragedy , a short satirical novel by Evelyn Waugh...

, The Cincinnati Kid
The Cincinnati Kid
The Cincinnati Kid is a 1965 American drama film. It tells the story of Eric "The Kid" Stoner, a young Depression-era poker player, as he seeks to establish his reputation as the best...

, Easy Rider
Easy Rider
Easy Rider is a 1969 American road movie written by Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper, and Terry Southern, produced by Fonda and directed by Hopper. It tells the story of two bikers who travel through the American Southwest and South with the aim of achieving freedom...

, and The Magic Christian
The Magic Christian (film)
The Magic Christian is a 1969 British comedy film directed by Joseph McGrath and starring Peter Sellers and Ringo Starr, with noteworthy appearances by John Cleese, Raquel Welch, Christopher Lee, Richard Attenborough and Roman Polanski. It was loosely adapted from the 1959 comic novel of the same...

. His work on Easy Rider helped create the independent film movement of the 1970s
1970s in film
The decade of the 1970s in film involved many significant films.----Contents1 World cinema2 Hollywood3 List of films: # A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z.4 Events-World cinema:...

.

Biography


Born in Alvarado, Texas
Alvarado, Texas
Alvarado is the oldest city in Johnson County, Texas. The population was 4,289 in 2009.-Geography:Alvarado is located at and is located at the intersection of US Hwy 67 and I-35W. The city is south of Fort Worth and southwest of Dallas.According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has...

, Southern left Southern Methodist University
Southern Methodist University
Southern Methodist University is a private university in Dallas, Texas, United States. Founded in 1911 by the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, SMU operates campuses in Dallas, Plano, and Taos, New Mexico. SMU is owned by the South Central Jurisdiction of the United Methodist Church...

 to serve as a Lieutenant in the US Army
United States Army
The United States Army is the main branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for land-based military operations. It is the largest and oldest established branch of the U.S. military, and is one of seven U.S. uniformed services...

 during World War II. He returned to the States to study at Northwestern University
Northwestern University
Northwestern University is a private research university in Evanston and Chicago, Illinois, USA. Northwestern has eleven undergraduate, graduate, and professional schools offering 124 undergraduate degrees and 145 graduate and professional degrees....

, where he graduated with a degree in philosophy in 1948.

Paris, 1948–52


Southern left the US in September 1948, using a G.I. Bill grant to travel to France, where he studied at the Faculté Des Lettres of the Sorbonne
University of Paris
The University of Paris was a university located in Paris, France and one of the earliest to be established in Europe. It was founded in the mid 12th century, and officially recognized as a university probably between 1160 and 1250...

. His four-year stint in Paris was a crucial formative influence, both on his development as a writer and on the evolution of his "hip" persona. During this period he made many important friendships and social contacts as he became a central figure in the expatriate American café society of the 1950s. He became close friends with Mason Hoffenberg (with whom he subsequently co-wrote the novel Candy
Candy (novel)
Candy is a 1958 novel written by Maxwell Kenton in collaboration with Mason Hoffenberg published by Olympia Press. It was later published in North America by Putnam under the authors' own names...

), Alexander Trocchi
Alexander Trocchi
Alexander Whitelaw Robertson Trocchi was a Scottish novelist.-Early career:Trocchi was born in Glasgow to a Scottish mother and Italian father. After working as a seaman on the Murmansk convoys, he attended University of Glasgow. On graduation he obtained a traveling grant that enabled him to...

, John Marquand, Mordecai Richler
Mordecai Richler
Mordecai Richler, CC was a Canadian Jewish author, screenwriter and essayist. A leading critic called him "the great shining star of his Canadian literary generation" and a pivotal figure in the country's history. His best known works are The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz, Barney's Version,...

, Aram Avakian
Aram Avakian
Aram A. Avakian was an American film editor and director.Directed ground-breaking indie film End of the Road- Life and work :...

 (filmmaker, photographer and brother of Columbia Records
Columbia Records
Columbia Records is an American record label, owned by Japan's Sony Music Entertainment, operating under the Columbia Music Group with Aware Records. It was founded in 1888, evolving from an earlier enterprise, the American Graphophone Company — successor to the Volta Graphophone Company...

 jazz producer George Avakian
George Avakian
George Avakian is an American record producer and executive known particularly for his work with Columbia Records, and his production of albums by Miles Davis and other notable jazz musicians....

), and jazz musician and motorsport enthusiast Allen Eager
Allen Eager
Allen Eager was an American jazz tenor saxophonist.Eager first played jazz as a teenager during World War II in the bands of Bobby Sherwood, Sonny Dunham, Shorty Sherock, Hal McIntyre, Woody Herman, Tommy Dorsey, and Johnny Bothwell...

. He also met expatriate American writer James Baldwin
James Baldwin (writer)
James Arthur Baldwin was an American novelist, essayist, playwright, poet, and social critic.Baldwin's essays, for instance "Notes of a Native Son" , explore palpable yet unspoken intricacies of racial, sexual, and class distinctions in Western societies, most notably in mid-20th century America,...

 and leading French intellectuals Jean Cocteau
Jean Cocteau
Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, playwright, artist and filmmaker. His circle of associates, friends and lovers included Kenneth Anger, Pablo Picasso, Jean Hugo, Jean Marais, Henri Bernstein, Marlene Dietrich, Coco Chanel, Erik Satie, María...

, Jean-Paul Sartre
Jean-Paul Sartre
Jean-Paul Charles Aymard Sartre was a French existentialist philosopher, playwright, novelist, screenwriter, political activist, biographer, and literary critic. He was one of the leading figures in 20th century French philosophy, particularly Marxism, and was one of the key figures in literary...

, and Albert Camus
Albert Camus
Albert Camus was a French author, journalist, and key philosopher of the 20th century. In 1949, Camus founded the Group for International Liaisons within the Revolutionary Union Movement, which was opposed to some tendencies of the Surrealist movement of André Breton.Camus was awarded the 1957...

.

Southern frequented the Cinémathèque Française
Cinémathèque Française
The Cinémathèque Française holds one of the largest archives of films, movie documents and film-related objects in the world. Located in Paris, the Cinémathèque holds daily screenings of films from around the world.-History:...

 in Paris and saw jazz performances by leading bebop
Bebop
Bebop differed drastically from the straightforward compositions of the swing era, and was instead characterized by fast tempos, asymmetrical phrasing, intricate melodies, and rhythm sections that expanded on their role as tempo-keepers...

 musicians including Charlie Parker
Charlie Parker
Charles Parker, Jr. , famously called Bird or Yardbird, was an American jazz saxophonist and composer....

, Dizzy Gillespie
Dizzy Gillespie
John Birks "Dizzy" Gillespie was an American jazz trumpet player, bandleader, singer, and composer dubbed "the sound of surprise".Together with Charlie Parker, he was a major figure in the development of bebop and modern jazz...

, Bud Powell
Bud Powell
Earl Rudolph "Bud" Powell was an American Jazz pianist. Powell has been described as one of "the two most significant pianists of the style of modern jazz that came to be known as bop", the other being his friend and contemporary Thelonious Monk...

, Thelonious Monk
Thelonious Monk
Thelonious Sphere Monk was an American jazz pianist and composer considered "one of the giants of American music". Monk had a unique improvisational style and made numerous contributions to the standard jazz repertoire, including "Epistrophy", "'Round Midnight", "Blue Monk", "Straight, No Chaser"...

, and Miles Davis
Miles Davis
Miles Dewey Davis III was an American jazz musician, trumpeter, bandleader, and composer. Widely considered one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century, Miles Davis was, with his musical groups, at the forefront of several major developments in jazz music, including bebop, cool jazz,...

, evoked in his classic "You're Too Hip, Baby". During the early 1950s he wrote some of his best short stories, including "The Butcher" and "The Automatic Gate", both published in David Burnett's New Story magazine. His story "The Accident" was the first short story published in the Paris Review
Paris Review
The Paris Review is a literary quarterly founded in 1953 by Harold L. Humes, Peter Matthiessen and George Plimpton. Plimpton edited the Review from its founding until his death in 2003. In its first five years, The Paris Review published works by Jack Kerouac, Philip Larkin, V. S...

in its founding issue (1953); it was followed by "The Sun and the Still-born Stars" in issue #4. Southern became closely identified with the Paris Review and its founders, Peter Matthiessen
Peter Matthiessen
Peter Matthiessen is a two-time National Book Award-winning American novelist and non-fiction writer, as well as an environmental activist...

, H.L. "Doc" Humes
Harold L. Humes
Harold Louis Humes, Jr. was known as HL Humes in his books, and usually as "Doc" Humes in life. He was the originator of The Paris Review literary magazine, author of two novels in the late 1950s, and a gregarious fixture of the cultural scene in Paris, London, and New York in the 1950s and early...

, and George Plimpton
George Plimpton
George Ames Plimpton was an American journalist, writer, editor, and actor. He is widely known for his sports writing and for helping to found The Paris Review.-Early life:...

, and he formed a lifelong friendship with Plimpton. He met French model Pud Gadiot during 1952; a romance soon blossomed and the couple married just before they moved to New York City.

Greenwich Village, 1953–56


In 1953 Southern and Gadiot returned to the US and settled in Greenwich Village
Greenwich Village
Greenwich Village, , , , .in New York often simply called "the Village", is a largely residential neighborhood on the west side of Lower Manhattan in New York City. A large majority of the district is home to upper middle class families...

 in New York City. As he had in Paris, Southern quickly became a prominent figure in the artistic scene that flourished in the village in the late 1950s. He met visual artists including Robert Frank
Robert Frank
Robert Frank , born in Zürich, Switzerland, is an important figure in American photography and film. His most notable work, the 1958 photobook titled The Americans, was influential, and earned Frank comparisons to a modern-day de Tocqueville for his fresh and skeptical outsider's view of American...

, Annie Truxell, and Larry Rivers
Larry Rivers
Larry Rivers was an American artist, musician, filmmaker and occasional actor. Rivers resided and maintained studios in New York City, Southampton, New York and Zihuatanejo, Mexico.-Biography:...

, and through Mason Hoffenberg, who made occasional visits from Paris, he was introduced to leading writers including Jack Kerouac
Jack Kerouac
Jean-Louis "Jack" Lebris de Kerouac was an American novelist and poet. He is considered a literary iconoclast and, alongside William S. Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg, a pioneer of the Beat Generation. Kerouac is recognized for his spontaneous method of writing, covering topics such as Catholic...

, Allen Ginsberg
Allen Ginsberg
Irwin Allen Ginsberg was an American poet and one of the leading figures of the Beat Generation in the 1950s. He vigorously opposed militarism, materialism and sexual repression...

, and Gregory Corso
Gregory Corso
Gregory Nunzio Corso was an American poet, youngest of the inner circle of Beat Generation writers...

.

He frequented renowned jazz venues like the Five Spot
Five Spot
The Five Spot Café was a jazz club located at 5 Cooper Square in the Bowery neighbourhood of New York City.-History:In 1937, Salvatore Termini purchased what was then known as the Bowery Café, a working-class bar located under the Third Avenue El. In 1946, two of Termini's sons, Joe and Ignatze ...

, the San Remo, and the Village Vanguard
Village Vanguard
The Village Vanguard is a jazz club located at in Greenwich Village, New York City. The club was opened on February 22, 1935, by Max Gordon. At first, it also featured other forms of music such as folk music and beat poetry, but it switched to an all-jazz format in 1957.-History:Over 100 jazz...

. It was in this period that Southern discovered and became obsessed with the work of British writer Henry Green
Henry Green
Henry Green was the nom de plume of Henry Vincent Yorke , an English author best remembered for the novel Loving, which was featured by Time in its list of the 100 Best English-language Novels from 1923 to 2005.- Biography :Green was born near Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, into an educated family...

. Green's writing exerted a strong influence on Southern's early work, and Green became one of Southern's most ardent early supporters.

Southern struggled to gain recognition in this period, when he was writing his first solo novel, Flash and Filigree. Only a few of his short stories were accepted, and he was rejected by dozens of leading magazines and journals. Here, as in Paris, Southern was almost entirely supported by his wife Pud, but their relationship fell apart within a year of their arrival in New York and they were divorced in mid-1954.

During 1954 and 1955 Southern met two of his literary heroes, William Faulkner
William Faulkner
William Cuthbert Faulkner was an American writer from Oxford, Mississippi. Faulkner worked in a variety of media; he wrote novels, short stories, a play, poetry, essays and screenplays during his career...

 and author of The Man With The Golden Arm
The Man with the Golden Arm (novel)
The Man with the Golden Arm is a novel by Nelson Algren that details the trials and hardships of illicit card dealer "Frankie Machine", along with an assortment of colorful characters, on Chicago's Near Northwest Side. A veteran of World War II, Frankie struggles to stabilize his personal life...

, Nelson Algren
Nelson Algren
Nelson Algren was an American writer.-Early life:Algren was born Nelson Ahlgren Abraham in Detroit, Michigan, the son of Goldie and Gerson Abraham. At the age of three he moved with his parents to Chicago, Illinois where they lived in a working-class, immigrant neighborhood on the South Side...

. Southern interviewed Algren for the Paris Review in the autumn of 1955 and they became good friends; they remained in touch after the interview and Algren became another of Southern's early champions.

Southern's fortunes began to change after he was taken on by the Curtis-Brown
Curtis Brown (literary agents)
Curtis Brown is a literary and talent agency based in London, UK. It was founded in 1899 by Albert Curtis Brown.-History:...

 Agency in mid-1954; through them he had three of his short stories accepted by Harper's Bazaar
Harper's Bazaar
Harper’s Bazaar is an American fashion magazine, first published in 1867. Harper’s Bazaar is published by Hearst and, as a magazine, considers itself to be the style resource for “women who are the first to buy the best, from casual to couture.”...

. They published "The Sun and the Still-born Stars" and "The Panthers" in the same edition in late 1955, and "The Night Bird Blew for Doctor Warner" was featured in the January 1956 edition.

In October 1955 Southern met model and aspiring actress Carol Kauffman; they were married on July 14, 1956.

Geneva, 1956–59


Southern returned to Europe with Carol in October 1956, stopping off in Paris before settling in Geneva
Geneva
Geneva In the national languages of Switzerland the city is known as Genf , Ginevra and Genevra is the second-most-populous city in Switzerland and is the most populous city of Romandie, the French-speaking part of Switzerland...

, Switzerland, where they lived until 1959. Carol took a job with UNESCO
UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

, which supported them as Terry continued to write. The years in Geneva were a very productive period during which he prepared Flash and Filigree for publication, and worked on Candy and The Magic Christian as well as TV scripts and short stories. The couple made trips to Paris, where they visited Mason Hoffenberg, Allen Ginsberg, and William S. Burroughs
William S. Burroughs
William Seward Burroughs II was an American novelist, poet, essayist and spoken word performer. A primary figure of the Beat Generation and a major postmodernist author, he is considered to be "one of the most politically trenchant, culturally influential, and innovative artists of the 20th...

, and to London, where Southern met Henry Green and Kenneth Tynan
Kenneth Tynan
Kenneth Peacock Tynan was an influential and often controversial English theatre critic and writer.-Early life:...

.

During his time in New York Southern had written a short story "about a girl in Greenwich Village who got involved with a hunchback because she was such a good Samaritan" and this became the core of Candy, co-written with Mason Hoffenberg. On his return to Paris in late 1956 Southern showed the story to several people, including Hoffenberg, who thought the character should have more adventures. Southern encouraged Hoffenberg to write one; this became the sequence where Candy goes to the hospital to see Dr. Krankheit. The pair began alternately creating chapters, working together regularly on visits to Tourettes-sur-Loup over the spring and summer of 1957. The book was introduced to publisher Maurice Girodias
Maurice Girodias
Maurice Girodias was the founder of the Olympia Press. At one time he was the owner of his father's Obelisk Press, and spent most of his productive years in Paris.-Early life:...

, probably by Marilyn Meeske, who, according to Southern, thought Girodias would be interested in it as a "dirty book".

André Deutsch
André Deutsch
André Deutsch was a British publisher.After having learned the business of publishing working for Francis Aldor with whom he was interned in the Isle of Man during the Second World War and who had introduced him to the industry, André Deutsch left Aldor's employment after a few months to continue...

 accepted Southern's first novel, Flash and Filigree early in 1957, and the short story "A South Summer Idyll" was published in Paris Review No.15. The Southerns spent some time in Spain with Henry Green during the summer, and Southern interviewed him for the Paris Review. Several more short stories were published later that year, by which time he was finishing work on Candy. Southern and Gregory Corso
Gregory Corso
Gregory Nunzio Corso was an American poet, youngest of the inner circle of Beat Generation writers...

 helped convince Girodias to publish the controversial novel Naked Lunch
Naked Lunch
Naked Lunch is a novel by William S. Burroughs originally published in 1959. The book is structured as a series of loosely-connected vignettes. Burroughs stated that the chapters are intended to be read in any order...

by then-little-known author William S. Burroughs.

In early 1958 Southern made his first foray into screenwriting, working with Canadian director Ted Kotcheff
Ted Kotcheff
Ted Kotcheff , sometimes credited as William Kotcheff or William T. Kotcheff, is a Canadian film and television director, who is well known for his work on several high-profile British television productions and as a director of films such as First Blood.-Early life:Kotcheff was born William...

, who had come to Britain to work for the newly established Associated TeleVision
Associated TeleVision
Associated Television, often referred to as ATV, was a British television company, holder of various licences to broadcast on the ITV network from 24 September 1955 until 00:34 on 1 January 1982...

 (ATV) company. Kotcheff directed Southern's TV adaptation of Eugene O'Neill
Eugene O'Neill
Eugene Gladstone O'Neill was an American playwright and Nobel laureate in Literature. His poetically titled plays were among the first to introduce into American drama techniques of realism earlier associated with Russian playwright Anton Chekhov, Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen, and Swedish...

's The Emperor Jones
The Emperor Jones
The Emperor Jones is a 1920 play by American dramatist Eugene O'Neill which tells the tale of Brutus Jones, an African-American man who kills a man, goes to prison, escapes to a Caribbean island, and sets himself up as emperor...

, which was broadcast in the UK in March. This coincided with the publication of Flash and Filigree, which was well reviewed in the UK but coolly received in the US.

The first major magazine interview with Southern, conducted by Elaine Dundy
Elaine Dundy
Elaine Dundy was an American novelist, biographer, journalist, actress and playwright.-Early life:Born Elaine Rita Brimberg in New York City, of Latvian maternal descent, her Polish father was an office furniture manufacturer and a violent bully...

, was published in UK Harper's Bazaar in August 1958. In October Olympia published Candy under the pseudonym Maxwell Kenton, and it was immediately banned by the Paris vice squad.

Southern's first solo novel, The Magic Christian
The Magic Christian (novel)
The Magic Christian is a 1959 comic novel by American author Terry Southern. In 1969 the novel was made into a film starring Peter Sellers and Ringo Starr, by director Joseph McGrath, also titled The Magic Christian...

, satirically explores the corrupting effects of money. He finished the book in Geneva over the fall and winter of 1958–59 and it was published by André Deutsch in spring 1959 to mixed reviews, although it soon gained an avid cult following. By the time it had been published, the Southerns had decided to return to the US; they left Geneva for New York in April 1959.

East Canaan, 1959–62


After moving back to the US, the Southerns stayed with friends for several months until they were able to buy their own home. They were looking for a rural retreat close enough to New York to allow Terry to commute there. Southern met and became friendly with jazz musician Artie Shaw
Artie Shaw
Arthur Jacob Arshawsky , better known as Artie Shaw, was an American jazz clarinetist, composer, and bandleader. He was also the author of both fiction and non-fiction writings....

 and they began looking for properties together. Shaw put down a deposit on a farm in East Canaan, Connecticut
Connecticut
Connecticut is a state in the New England region of the northeastern United States. It is bordered by Rhode Island to the east, Massachusetts to the north, and the state of New York to the west and the south .Connecticut is named for the Connecticut River, the major U.S. river that approximately...

, but at the urging of a friend Southern convinced Shaw to let him buy the farm, which he purchased for $23,000.

During 1959 and 1960 he continued working on a never-completed novel called The Hipsters, which he had begun in Geneva. He became part of the New York 'salon' of his old friend George Plimpton—who had also moved back to New York—rubbing shoulders with James Jones
James Jones (author)
James Jones was an American author known for his explorations of World War II and its aftermath.-Life and work:...

, William Styron
William Styron
William Clark Styron, Jr. was an American novelist and essayist who won major literary awards for his work.For much of his career, Styron was best known for his novels, which included...

, Norman Mailer
Norman Mailer
Norman Kingsley Mailer was an American novelist, journalist, essayist, poet, playwright, screenwriter, and film director.Along with Truman Capote, Joan Didion, Hunter S...

, Philip Roth
Philip Roth
Philip Milton Roth is an American novelist. He gained fame with the 1959 novella Goodbye, Columbus, an irreverent and humorous portrait of Jewish-American life that earned him a National Book Award...

, H.L. Humes, Jack Gelber
Jack Gelber
Jack Gelber was an American playwright best known for his 1959 drama The Connection, depicting the life of drug-addicted jazz musicians. The first great success of the Living Theatre, the play was translated into five languages and produced in ten nations...

, the Aga Khan
Aga Khan IV
Prince Karim, Aga Khan IV, NPk, NI, KBE, CC, GCC, GCIH, GCM is the 49th and current Imam of the Shia Imami Nizari Ismaili Muslims. He has held this position under the title of Aga Khan since July 11, 1957, when, at the age of 20, he succeeded his grandfather, Sultan Mahomed Shah Aga Khan...

, Blair Fuller, the cast of the British comedy stage revue Beyond The Fringe
Beyond the Fringe
Beyond the Fringe was a British comedy stage revue written and performed by Peter Cook, Dudley Moore, Alan Bennett, and Jonathan Miller. It played in London's West End and then on New York's Broadway in the early 1960s, and is widely regarded as seminal to the rise of satire in 1960s Britain.-The...

, Jules Feiffer
Jules Feiffer
Jules Ralph Feiffer is an American syndicated cartoonist, most notable for his long-run comic strip titled Feiffer. He has created more than 35 books, plays and screenplays...

, Jackie Kennedy, British actress Jean Marsh
Jean Marsh
Jean Lyndsey Torren Marsh is an English actress, occasional screenwriter, and co-creator of the television series Upstairs, Downstairs and The House of Eliott....

, Gore Vidal
Gore Vidal
Gore Vidal is an American author, playwright, essayist, screenwriter, and political activist. His third novel, The City and the Pillar , outraged mainstream critics as one of the first major American novels to feature unambiguous homosexuality...

, Kenneth Tynan
Kenneth Tynan
Kenneth Peacock Tynan was an influential and often controversial English theatre critic and writer.-Early life:...

, and his first wife, Elaine Dundy
Elaine Dundy
Elaine Dundy was an American novelist, biographer, journalist, actress and playwright.-Early life:Born Elaine Rita Brimberg in New York City, of Latvian maternal descent, her Polish father was an office furniture manufacturer and a violent bully...

, through whom Southern met satirist Lenny Bruce
Lenny Bruce
Leonard Alfred Schneider , better known by the stage name Lenny Bruce, was a Jewish-American comedian, social critic and satirist...

.

Flash and Filigree had been published in the US by Coward McCann in the fall of 1958. Several fragments from The Hipsters were published as short stories during this period, including "Red-Dirt Marijuana" published, in the January–February 1960 edition of Evergreen Review
Evergreen Review
Evergreen Review is a U.S.-based literary magazine founded by Barney Rosset, publisher of Grove Press. It existed in print from 1957 through 1973, and was re-launched online in 1998...

; and "Razor Fight", published in Glamour
Glamour (magazine)
Glamour is a women's magazine published by Condé Nast Publications. Founded in 1939 in the United States, it was originally called Glamour of Hollywood....

magazine. He had an essay on Lotte Lenya
Lotte Lenya
Lotte Lenya was an Austrian singer, diseuse, and actress. In the German-speaking and classical music world she is best remembered for her performances of the songs of her husband, Kurt Weill. In English-language film she is remembered for her Academy Award-nominated role in The Roman Spring of Mrs...

 published in Esquire
Esquire (magazine)
Esquire is a men's magazine, published in the U.S. by the Hearst Corporation. Founded in 1932, it flourished during the Great Depression under the guidance of founder and editor Arnold Gingrich.-History:...

. In early 1960 he began writing book reviews for The Nation
The Nation
The Nation is the oldest continuously published weekly magazine in the United States. The periodical, devoted to politics and culture, is self-described as "the flagship of the left." Founded on July 6, 1865, It is published by The Nation Company, L.P., at 33 Irving Place, New York City.The Nation...

, which were published over the next two years. During the year he also collaborated with his old Paris friends, Alexander Trocchi and Richard Seaver, compiling an anthology of modern fiction for the Frederick Fall company. The editing process took much longer than expected: a drug bust led Trocchi to flee to the UK via Canada, leaving Southern and Seaver to finish the book.

Terry and Carol's son and only child Nile was born on December 29, 1960. Around this time Southern began writing for Maurice Girodias' new periodical Olympia Review. He began negotiations with the Putnam
G. P. Putnam's Sons
G. P. Putnam's Sons was a major United States book publisher based in New York City, New York. Since 1996, it has been an imprint of the Penguin Group.-History:...

 company to reissue Candy under his and Hoffenberg's real names, and he hired a new literary agent, Sterling Lord.

In the summer of 1962 Southern worked for two months as a relief editor at Esquire, and during this period he had several stories published in the magazine, including "The Road to Axotle". Through the Esquire job, he interviewed rising filmmaker Stanley Kubrick
Stanley Kubrick
Stanley Kubrick was an American film director, writer, producer, and photographer who lived in England during most of the last four decades of his career...

, who had just completed his controversial screen adaptation of Vladimir Nabokov
Vladimir Nabokov
Vladimir Vladimirovich Nabokov was a multilingual Russian novelist and short story writer. Nabokov wrote his first nine novels in Russian, then rose to international prominence as a master English prose stylist...

's novel Lolita
Lolita
Lolita is a novel by Vladimir Nabokov, first written in English and published in 1955 in Paris and 1958 in New York, and later translated by the author into Russian...

. Although Southern knew little about Kubrick, the director was already well aware of Southern's work, having been given a copy of The Magic Christian by Peter Sellers during the making of Lolita.

Dr. Strangelove


Southern's life and career changed irrevocably on November 2, 1962, when he received a telegram inviting him to come to London to work on the screenplay of Kubrick's new film, which was then in pre-production.

Partly on the recommendation of Peter Sellers, Stanley Kubrick asked Southern to help revise the screenplay of Dr. Strangelove
Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb
Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, commonly known as Dr. Strangelove, is a 1964 black comedy film which satirizes the nuclear scare. It was directed, produced, and co-written by Stanley Kubrick, starring Peter Sellers and George C. Scott, and featuring Sterling...

(1964). The film was based on the Cold War
Cold War
The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

 thriller Red Alert (1958) by Peter George, the rights to which Kubrick had secured for $3,000. Kubrick and George's original screenplay (which was to be called Edge of Doom) was a straight political thriller. They then reworked it into a satirical format (provisionally titled The Delicate Balance of Terror) in which the plot of Red Alert was situated as a film-within-a-film made by an alien intelligence.

Southern's work on the project was brief but intense; he officially worked on the script from November 16 to December 28, 1962. Southern began to rely on the amphetamine 'diet pill' Dexamyl
Dexamyl
Dexamyl is the brand name of a combination drug composed of dextroamphetamine and amobarbital .First introduced in the 1930s, Dexamyl was a rudimentary antidepressant medication...

 to keep him going through the frantic rewriting process; in later years he became increasingly reliant on the drug and he developed a long-term dependency. His amphetamine abuse, combined with his heavy intake of alcohol and other drugs, contributed significantly to health problems in later life.

The major change Southern and Kubrick made was to recast the script as a black comedy
Black comedy
A black comedy, or dark comedy, is a comic work that employs black humor or gallows humor. The definition of black humor is problematic; it has been argued that it corresponds to the earlier concept of gallows humor; and that, as humor has been defined since Freud as a comedic act that anesthetizes...

, jettisoning the "film within a film" structure. Kubrick, George, and Southern shared the screenplay credits, but competing claims about who contributed what led to confusion and some conflict between the three men after the film's release. The credit question was further confused by Sellers' numerous ab-libbed contributions—he would often improvise wildly on set, so Kubrick made sure that Sellers had as much camera 'coverage' as possible during his scenes, in order to capture these spontaneous inspirations.

In an apparent homage to Southern's birthplace, the movie mentions that the "23rd Airborne Division is stationed seven miles away at Alvarado". In fact, Southern's birthplace of Alvarado, Texas
Alvarado, Texas
Alvarado is the oldest city in Johnson County, Texas. The population was 4,289 in 2009.-Geography:Alvarado is located at and is located at the intersection of US Hwy 67 and I-35W. The city is south of Fort Worth and southwest of Dallas.According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has...

, is about 10 miles from the city of Burleson, Texas
Burleson, Texas
Burleson is a city in Johnson and Tarrant counties in the U.S. state of Texas. It is considered a suburb of Fort Worth and is located in the rapidly growing suburban expanse just south of the city. As of the 2010 census, the population was 36,690, having increased from the 20,976 residents counted...

, (Burpleson sans the "p") located geographically just south of Fort Worth.

According to Art Miller, an independent producer who hired Southern to write the screenplay for a never-completed comic film about the bumbling Watergate burglars, Southern told him that the best example of his writing in Dr. Strangelove was the scene in which B-52 pilot T.J. "King" Kong, played by Slim Pickens
Slim Pickens
Louis Burton Lindley, Jr. , better known by the stage name Slim Pickens, was an American rodeo performer and film and television actor who epitomized the profane, tough, sardonic cowboy, but who is best remembered for his comic roles, notably in Dr...

, reads off a list of the contents of a survival kit to his crew, concluding that a man could have "a great weekend in Vegas" with some of the items. When the scene was shot, Pickens spoke the scripted line ("Dallas
Dallas, Texas
Dallas is the third-largest city in Texas and the ninth-largest in the United States. The Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex is the largest metropolitan area in the South and fourth-largest metropolitan area in the United States...

"), but the word "Vegas
Las Vegas, Nevada
Las Vegas is the most populous city in the U.S. state of Nevada and is also the county seat of Clark County, Nevada. Las Vegas is an internationally renowned major resort city for gambling, shopping, and fine dining. The city bills itself as The Entertainment Capital of the World, and is famous...

" had to be overdubbed during post-production because the film was released not long after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy
John F. Kennedy
John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy , often referred to by his initials JFK, was the 35th President of the United States, serving from 1961 until his assassination in 1963....

 in Dallas in November 1963. According to Miller, Peter Sellers quietly paid Southern tens of thousands of dollars to create some of the best-known comedy bits for Sellers' character Inspector Clouseau
Inspector Clouseau
Chief Inspector Jacques Clouseau is a fictional character in Blake Edwards' The Pink Panther series. In most of the films, he was played by Peter Sellers, with one film in which he was played by Alan Arkin and one in which he was played by an uncredited Roger Moore...

 in the Pink Panther film series.

Southern also helped Sellers with dialogue coaching. Originally slated to play four roles, including that of the Texan B-52 bomber pilot Major Kong, the actor had difficulty mastering the accent. Southern, a native Texan, taped himself speaking Kong's lines for Sellers to study. Sellers, who had never been comfortable in the role of Kong, was able to extricate himself from the part after allegedly fracturing his ankle, forcing Kubrick to re-cast. The part eventually went to actor Slim Pickens, who Kubrick met during his brief stint working on Marlon Brando
Marlon Brando
Marlon Brando, Jr. was an American movie star and political activist. "Unchallenged as the most important actor in modern American Cinema" according to the St...

's One-Eyed Jacks
One-Eyed Jacks
One-Eyed Jacks, a 1961 Western, is the only film directed by actor Marlon Brando, who also played its lead character, Rio.The film was originally to be directed by Stanley Kubrick and Sam Peckinpah...

.

After the film went into wider release in January 1964, Southern was the subject of considerable media coverage, and was erroneously given primary credit for the screenplay, a misperception he did little to correct. This reportedly angered both Kubrick—who was notorious for his unwillingness to share writing credits—and Peter George, who penned a complaint to Life
Life (magazine)
Life generally refers to three American magazines:*A humor and general interest magazine published from 1883 to 1936. Time founder Henry Luce bought the magazine in 1936 solely so that he could acquire the rights to its name....

magazine in response to a lavish photo essay on Southern published in the May 8, 1964, edition. Stung by the article's assertion that Southern was responsible for turning the formerly "serious script" into an "original irreverent satirical film", George pointed out that he and Kubrick had been working together on the script for ten months, whereas Southern was only "briefly employed (November 16 to December 28, 1962) to do some additional writing."

Towards the end of his work on Dr Strangelove, Southern began canvassing for more film work. Jobs he considered included a proposed John Schlesinger
John Schlesinger
John Richard Schlesinger, CBE was an English film and stage director and actor.-Early life:Schlesinger was born in London into a middle-class Jewish family, the son of Winifred Henrietta and Bernard Edward Schlesinger, a physician...

 screen adaptation of the Iris Murdoch
Iris Murdoch
Dame Iris Murdoch DBE was an Irish-born British author and philosopher, best known for her novels about political and social questions of good and evil, sexual relationships, morality, and the power of the unconscious...

 novel A Severed Head
A Severed Head
A Severed Head is a satirical, sometimes farcical 1961 novel by Iris Murdoch.Primary themes include marriage, adultery, and incest within a group of civilized and educated people. Set in and around London, it depicts a power struggle between grown-up middle class people who are lucky to be free of...

, and a project called The Marriage Game, to be directed by Peter Yates
Peter Yates
Peter James Yates was an English director and producer. He was born in Aldershot, Hampshire.The son of an army officer, he attended Charterhouse School as a boy, graduated from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and worked for some years as an actor, director and stage manager...

 and produced by the James Bond
James Bond
James Bond, code name 007, is a fictional character created in 1953 by writer Ian Fleming, who featured him in twelve novels and two short story collections. There have been a six other authors who wrote authorised Bond novels or novelizations after Fleming's death in 1964: Kingsley Amis,...

 team of Harry Saltzman
Harry Saltzman
Harry Saltzman was a Canadian theatre and film producer best known for his mega-gamble which resulted in his co-producing the James Bond film series with Albert R...

 and Cubby Broccoli. He also wrote an essay on John Fowles
John Fowles
John Robert Fowles was an English novelist and essayist. In 2008, The Times newspaper named Fowles among their list of "The 50 greatest British writers since 1945".-Birth and family:...

' novel The Collector
The Collector
The Collector is the title of a 1963 novel by John Fowles. It was made into a movie in 1965.- Plot summary :The novel is about a lonely young man, Frederick Clegg, who works as a clerk in a city hall, and collects butterflies in his spare time...

, which led to his work as a "script doctor" on the subsequent screen version.

Southern's writing career took off during 1963. His essay "Twirlin' At Ole Miss" was published in Esquire in February 1963, and this work of satirical reportage is now acknowledged as one of the cornerstone works of New Journalism
New Journalism
New Journalism was a style of 1960s and 1970s news writing and journalism which used literary techniques deemed unconventional at the time. The term was codified with its current meaning by Tom Wolfe in a 1973 collection of journalism articles he published as The New Journalism, which included...

. This was quickly followed by the publication of several other essays, including the Bay of Pigs
Bay of Pigs Invasion
The Bay of Pigs Invasion was an unsuccessful action by a CIA-trained force of Cuban exiles to invade southern Cuba, with support and encouragement from the US government, in an attempt to overthrow the Cuban government of Fidel Castro. The invasion was launched in April 1961, less than three months...

-themed "Recruiting for the Big Parade", and one of his best Paris stories, "You're Too Hip, Baby". The fiction anthology Writers In Revolt was published in the spring, soon followed by the US publication of Candy, which went on to become the #2 American fiction best-seller of 1963.

"The Big Time", 1964–70


The success of Dr Strangelove and the re-published version of Candy was the turning point in Southern's career, making him one of the most celebrated writers of his day. In the words of biographer Lee Hill
Lee Hill
Lee Hill is the author of A Grand Guy—a biography of Terry Southern —as well as a monograph on the film Easy Rider . He has contributed a wide range of journalism and commentary to Senses of Cinema, The Times, Scenario, Cinemascope, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, and other outlets...

, Southern spent the next six years in "an Olympian realm of glamour, money, constant motion and excitement", mixing and working with the biggest literary, film, music, and TV stars in the world. His work on Dr Strangelove opened the doors to lucrative work as a screenwriter and script doctor, and it allowed him to greatly increase his fee, from the reported $2,000 he received for Dr Strangelove to as much as $100,000 thereafter.

During the latter half of the 1960s Southern worked on the screenplays of a string of 'cult' films. His credits in this period include The Loved One
The Loved One (film)
The Loved One is a 1965 black comedy film about the funeral business in Los Angeles, which is based on The Loved One: An Anglo-American Tragedy , a short satirical novel by Evelyn Waugh...

(1965), The Collector
The Collector
The Collector is the title of a 1963 novel by John Fowles. It was made into a movie in 1965.- Plot summary :The novel is about a lonely young man, Frederick Clegg, who works as a clerk in a city hall, and collects butterflies in his spare time...

(1965), The Cincinnati Kid
The Cincinnati Kid
The Cincinnati Kid is a 1965 American drama film. It tells the story of Eric "The Kid" Stoner, a young Depression-era poker player, as he seeks to establish his reputation as the best...

(1965), Casino Royale
Casino Royale (1967 film)
Casino Royale is a 1967 comedy spy film originally produced by Columbia Pictures starring an ensemble cast of directors and actors. It is set as a satire of the James Bond film series and the spy genre, and is loosely based on Ian Fleming's first James Bond novel.The film stars David Niven as the...

(1967), Barbarella
Barbarella (film)
Barbarella is a 1968 Franco-Italian science fiction film based on Jean-Claude Forrest's French Barbarella comics. The film was directed by Roger Vadim and stars Jane Fonda, who was Vadim's wife at the time.-Plot:...

(1967), Easy Rider
Easy Rider
Easy Rider is a 1969 American road movie written by Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper, and Terry Southern, produced by Fonda and directed by Hopper. It tells the story of two bikers who travel through the American Southwest and South with the aim of achieving freedom...

(1968), The Magic Christian
The Magic Christian (film)
The Magic Christian is a 1969 British comedy film directed by Joseph McGrath and starring Peter Sellers and Ringo Starr, with noteworthy appearances by John Cleese, Raquel Welch, Christopher Lee, Richard Attenborough and Roman Polanski. It was loosely adapted from the 1959 comic novel of the same...

(1969), and The End of the Road
The End of the Road
The End of the Road is a 1958 novel by the American writer John Barth. Its story follows Jacob Horner as he deals with an extreme case of psychological paralysis...

(1970) .

The Loved One / The Cincinnati Kid


In early 1964 Southern was hired to collaborate with British author Christopher Isherwood
Christopher Isherwood
Christopher William Bradshaw Isherwood was an English-American novelist.-Early life and work:Born at Wyberslegh Hall, High Lane, Cheshire in North West England, Isherwood spent his childhood in various towns where his father, a Lieutenant-Colonel in the British Army, was stationed...

 on a screen adaptation of Evelyn Waugh
Evelyn Waugh
Arthur Evelyn St. John Waugh , known as Evelyn Waugh, was an English writer of novels, travel books and biographies. He was also a prolific journalist and reviewer...

's satirical novel The Loved One
The Loved One
The Loved One: An Anglo-American Tragedy is a short satirical novel by British novelist Evelyn Waugh about the funeral business in Los Angeles, the British expatriate community in Hollywood, and the film industry.-Conception:...

, directed by British filmmaker Tony Richardson
Tony Richardson
Cecil Antonio "Tony" Richardson was an English theatre and film director and producer.-Early life:Richardson was born in Shipley, Yorkshire in 1928, the son of Elsie Evans and Clarence Albert Richardson, a chemist...

. When filming was postponed in spring of 1964, Southern returned to East Canaan and continued work on a rewrite of the script for the film version of John Fowles
John Fowles
John Robert Fowles was an English novelist and essayist. In 2008, The Times newspaper named Fowles among their list of "The 50 greatest British writers since 1945".-Birth and family:...

' The Collector but he eventually dropped out of the project because he disagreed with the change to the story's ending.

In August 1964 the Southerns moved to Los Angeles, where Terry began work on the screenplay of The Loved One, for which MGM/Filmways
Filmways
Filmways, Inc. was a television and film production company founded by American film executive Martin Ransohoff in 1958...

 paid him $3,000 per month. Southern's work and his networking and socializing brought him into contact with many Hollywood stars, including Ben Gazzara
Ben Gazzara
-Early life:Gazzara was born Biagio Anthony Gazzara in New York City, the son of Italian immigrants Angelina and Antonio Gazzara, who was a laborer and carpenter. Gazzara grew up on New York's tough Lower East Side. He actually lived on E. 29th Street and participated in the drama program at...

, Jennifer Jones, Janice Rule
Janice Rule
-Early life and career:Born in Norwood, Ohio, her career included stage, screen and television work. Rule studied ballet and began dancing in Chicago nightclubs in her teens. She soon attracted attention in Hollywood and made her film debut in 1951...

, George Segal
George Segal
George Segal is an American film, stage and television actor.-Early life:George Segal, Jr. was born in 1934 Great Neck, Long Island, New York, the son of Fannie Blanche and George Segal, Sr. He was educated at George School, a private Quaker preparatory boarding school near Newtown, Bucks County,...

, Richard Benjamin
Richard Benjamin
Richard Benjamin is an American actor and film director. He has starred in a number of productions, including Goodbye, Columbus , based on the novella by Philip Roth, and Westworld .-Life and career:...

, James Coburn
James Coburn
James Harrison Coburn III was an American film and television actor. Coburn appeared in nearly 70 films and made over 100 television appearances during his 45-year career, and played a wide range of roles and won an Academy Award for his supporting role as Glen Whitehouse in Affliction.A capable,...

, Peter Fonda
Peter Fonda
Peter Henry Fonda is an American actor. He is the son of Henry Fonda, brother of Jane Fonda, and father of Bridget and Justin Fonda...

, and Dennis Hopper
Dennis Hopper
Dennis Lee Hopper was an American actor, filmmaker and artist. As a young man, Hopper became interested in acting and eventually became a student of the Actors' Studio. He made his first television appearance in 1954 and appeared in two films featuring James Dean, Rebel Without a Cause and Giant...

 and his wife Brooke Hayward
Brooke Hayward
Brooke Hayward is an American actress and writer.-Early life and career:Born in Los Angeles, Hayward is the eldest, and only surviving, child from the marriage of former agent turned film-, television-, and stage producer Leland Hayward and actress Margaret Sullavan...

. Hopper, a fan and collector of modern art, would later introduce Southern to British gallery owner and art dealer Robert Fraser.

Not long after arriving in Los Angeles, Southern met a young Canadian-born actress and dancer, Gail Gerber, on the MGM backlot. Gerber was working as a dancer on an Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley
Elvis Aaron Presley was one of the most popular American singers of the 20th century. A cultural icon, he is widely known by the single name Elvis. He is often referred to as the "King of Rock and Roll" or simply "the King"....

 movie, and she also had a non-speaking role in The Loved One. Southern and Gerber soon began an affair. The relationship intensified during July/August 1964, and after Southern's wife and son went back to East Canaan, Southern and Gerber moved in together in a suite at the Chateau Marmont hotel.

Working with Richardson and Isherwood, Southern turned Waugh's novel into "an all-out attack on Hollywood, consumerism, and the hypocrisies surrounding man's fear of death". Southern also wrote the text for a souvenir book, which featured photos by William Claxton
William Claxton (photographer)
William Claxton was an American photographer and author.-Biography:Born in Pasadena, California, Claxton's works included a book of photographs of Steve McQueen, and Jazz Life, a book of photographs depicting jazz artists in the 1960s. He was most noted for his photography of jazz musicians...

.

Work on the film continued through most of 1965, with Southern and Gerber spending much of their leisure time with their newfound film star friends in Malibu. Loved One co-producer John Calley
John Calley
John Calley was an American film studio executive and producer. He was quite influential during his years at Warner Bros...

 was a frequent visitor to Southern's Chateau Marmont suite, and he hired Southern to work on several subsequent Filmways
Filmways
Filmways, Inc. was a television and film production company founded by American film executive Martin Ransohoff in 1958...

 projects, including The Cincinnati Kid
The Cincinnati Kid
The Cincinnati Kid is a 1965 American drama film. It tells the story of Eric "The Kid" Stoner, a young Depression-era poker player, as he seeks to establish his reputation as the best...

and Don't Make Waves
Don't Make Waves
Don't Make Waves is a Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer sex farce which starred Tony Curtis, Claudia Cardinale, Dave Draper and Sharon Tate...

.

Soon after principal shooting on The Loved One was concluded, Southern began work on the script of The Cincinnati Kid, which starred Steve McQueen. He was one of several writers who had worked on versions of the screenplay, including Paddy Chayevsky, George Good, and Ring Lardner Jr. Original director Sam Peckinpah
Sam Peckinpah
David Samuel "Sam" Peckinpah was an American filmmaker and screenwriter who achieved prominence following the release of the Western epic The Wild Bunch...

 was fired one week into shooting, allegedly because he shot unauthorized nude scenes. (He would not make another film until 1969's The Wild Bunch
The Wild Bunch
The Wild Bunch is a 1969 American Western film directed by Sam Peckinpah about an aging outlaw gang on the Texas-Mexico border, trying to exist in the changing "modern" world of 1913...

.) He was replaced by Norman Jewison
Norman Jewison
Norman Frederick Jewison, CC, O.Ont is a Canadian film director, producer, actor and founder of the Canadian Film Centre. Highlights of his directing career include In the Heat of the Night , The Thomas Crown Affair , Fiddler on the Roof , Jesus Christ Superstar , Moonstruck , The Hurricane and The...

, and during his work on this production Southern formed a close and enduring friendship with cast member Rip Torn
Rip Torn
Elmore Rual "Rip" Torn, Jr. , is an American actor of stage, screen and television.Torn received an Academy Award nomination as Best Supporting Actor for his role in the 1983 film Cross Creek. His work includes the role of Artie, the producer, on The Larry Sanders Show, for which he was nominated...

.

Casino Royale / Barbarella / Candy


By 1966 the film adaptations of Ian Fleming
Ian Fleming
Ian Lancaster Fleming was a British author, journalist and Naval Intelligence Officer.Fleming is best known for creating the fictional British spy James Bond and for a series of twelve novels and nine short stories about the character, one of the biggest-selling series of fictional books of...

's James Bond
James Bond
James Bond, code name 007, is a fictional character created in 1953 by writer Ian Fleming, who featured him in twelve novels and two short story collections. There have been a six other authors who wrote authorised Bond novels or novelizations after Fleming's death in 1964: Kingsley Amis,...

 series, produced by Albert R. Broccoli
Albert R. Broccoli
Albert Romolo Broccoli, CBE , nicknamed "Cubby", was an American film producer, who made more than 40 motion pictures throughout his career, most of them in the United Kingdom, and often filmed at Pinewood Studios. Co-founder of Danjaq, LLC and EON Productions, Broccoli is most notable as the...

 and Harry Saltzman
Harry Saltzman
Harry Saltzman was a Canadian theatre and film producer best known for his mega-gamble which resulted in his co-producing the James Bond film series with Albert R...

, had become a successful and popular film franchise. However, the rights to Fleming's first Bond novel Casino Royale
Casino Royale (novel)
Casino Royale is Ian Fleming's first James Bond novel. It paved the way for a further eleven novels by Fleming himself, in addition to two short story collections, followed by many "continuation" Bond novels by other authors....

had been secured by rival producer Charles K. Feldman
Charles K. Feldman
Charles K. Feldman was a film producer and talent agent born in New York City. In 1934 he married actress Jean Howard, whom he divorced in 1948...

. He had attempted to get Casino Royale made as an official James Bond movie (that is, one made by EON Productions
EON Productions
Eon Productions is a film production company known for producing the James Bond film series. The company is based in London's Piccadilly and also operates from Pinewood Studios in the United Kingdom...

), but Broccoli and Saltzman turned him down. Believing he could not compete with the official series, Feldman then decided to shoot the film as a parody, not only of James Bond but of the entire spy fiction genre. The casino segment featuring Peter Sellers
Peter Sellers
Richard Henry Sellers, CBE , known as Peter Sellers, was a British comedian and actor. Perhaps best known as Chief Inspector Clouseau in The Pink Panther film series, he is also notable for playing three different characters in Dr...

 and Orson Welles
Orson Welles
George Orson Welles , best known as Orson Welles, was an American film director, actor, theatre director, screenwriter, and producer, who worked extensively in film, theatre, television and radio...

 is the only portion based upon the novel.

Southern and Gail Gerber moved to London in early 1966, when Southern was hired to work on the screenplay of Casino Royale
Casino Royale (1967 film)
Casino Royale is a 1967 comedy spy film originally produced by Columbia Pictures starring an ensemble cast of directors and actors. It is set as a satire of the James Bond film series and the spy genre, and is loosely based on Ian Fleming's first James Bond novel.The film stars David Niven as the...

. The episodic "quasi-psychedelic burlesque" proved to be a chaotic production, stitched together from segments variously directed or co-directed by a team that included Joseph McGrath
Joseph McGrath (film director)
Joseph 'Apocalypse' McGrath , sometimes referred to as "'Apocalypse'" Joe McGrath or Croisette Meubles, is a Scottish film director and screenwriter best remembered for his two films, Casino Royale and The Magic Christian . McGrath frequently collaborated with Spike Milligan and Peter Sellers...

, Robert Parrish
Robert Parrish
Robert R. Parrish was an American actor, film editor, film director, and writer. He received an Academy Award for Film Editing for the 1947 film, Body and Soul....

, Val Guest
Val Guest
Val Guest was a British film director, best known for his science-fiction films for Hammer Film Productions in the 1950s, but who also enjoyed a long, varied and active career in the film industry from the early 1930s up until the early 1980s.-Early life and career:He was born Valmond Maurice...

, John Huston
John Huston
John Marcellus Huston was an American film director, screenwriter and actor. He wrote most of the 37 feature films he directed, many of which are today considered classics: The Maltese Falcon , The Treasure of the Sierra Madre , Key Largo , The Asphalt Jungle , The African Queen , Moulin Rouge...

, Richard Talmadge
Richard Talmadge
Richard Talmadge was a Swiss-born American actor, stuntman and film director....

, and Ken Hughes
Ken Hughes
Ken Hughes was a British film director, writer, and producer.-Personal history:Wife Charlotte Hughes living in LA...

. Many planned scenes could not be filmed due to the feud between Orson Welles and star Peter Sellers, which climaxed with Sellers walking out during the filming of the casino scenes and refusing to return. Many writers contributed to the screenplay, including Southern (who wrote most of the dialogue for Sellers), Woody Allen
Woody Allen
Woody Allen is an American screenwriter, director, actor, comedian, jazz musician, author, and playwright. Allen's films draw heavily on literature, sexuality, philosophy, psychology, Jewish identity, and the history of cinema...

, Wolf Mankowitz
Wolf Mankowitz
Cyril Wolf Mankowitz was an English writer, playwright and screenwriter of Russian Jewish descent.-Early life:...

, Michael Sayers, Frank Buxton
Frank Buxton
Frank Buxton is an American actor, television writer and director. His first credit was host and producer of the ABC television documentary series, Discovery, which he hosted from 1962 to 1966....

, Joseph Heller
Joseph Heller
Joseph Heller was a US satirical novelist, short story writer, and playwright. His best known work is Catch-22, a novel about US servicemen during World War II...

, Ben Hecht
Ben Hecht
Ben Hecht was an American screenwriter, director, producer, playwright, and novelist. Called "the Shakespeare of Hollywood", he received screen credits, alone or in collaboration, for the stories or screenplays of some 70 films and as a prolific storyteller, authored 35 books and created some of...

, Mickey Rose, and Billy Wilder
Billy Wilder
Billy Wilder was an Austro-Hungarian born American filmmaker, screenwriter, producer, artist, and journalist, whose career spanned more than 50 years and 60 films. He is regarded as one of the most brilliant and versatile filmmakers of Hollywood's golden age...

.

Southern had been introduced to Robert Fraser by Dennis Hopper, and when he went to London to work on Casino Royale he and Gail became part of Fraser's "jet-set" salon that included the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, photographer Michael Cooper
Michael Cooper (photographer)
Michael Cooper was a British photographer who is remembered for his photographs of leading rock musicians of the 1960s and early 1970s, most notably the many photos he took of The Rolling Stones in the mid-1960s....

, interior designer Christopher Gibbs, model-actress Anita Pallenberg
Anita Pallenberg
Anita Pallenberg is an Italian-born actress, model, and fashion designer. She was the romantic partner of Rolling Stones multi-instrumentalist and guitarist Brian Jones and later the partner of the guitarist of the same band Keith Richards, from 1967 to 1979, by whom she has two surviving...

, filmmaker Nicolas Roeg
Nicolas Roeg
Nicolas Jack Roeg, CBE, BSC is an English film director and cinematographer.-Life and career:Roeg was born in London, the son of Mabel Gertrude and Jack Nicolas Roeg...

, painter Francis Bacon
Francis Bacon
Francis Bacon, 1st Viscount St Albans, KC was an English philosopher, statesman, scientist, lawyer, jurist, author and pioneer of the scientific method. He served both as Attorney General and Lord Chancellor of England...

, producer Sandy Lieberson, Guinness
Guinness
Guinness is a popular Irish dry stout that originated in the brewery of Arthur Guinness at St. James's Gate, Dublin. Guinness is directly descended from the porter style that originated in London in the early 18th century and is one of the most successful beer brands worldwide, brewed in almost...

 heir Tara Browne
Tara Browne
The Honourable Tara Browne was a young London socialite. He is perhaps most famous today for serving as an inspiration of the Beatles song "A Day in the Life".-Biography:...

, and model Donyale Luna
Donyale Luna
Donyale Luna was an American model and cover girl. She also appeared in several films, in Camp by Andy Warhol, Qui êtes-vous, Polly Maggoo? by William Klein, as Groucho Marx's companion in Otto Preminger's Skidoo, and most notably as Oenothea in Federico Fellini's Satyricon and as the title...

. Southern became close friends with photographer Michael Cooper, who was part of the Rolling Stones' inner circle and who shot the cover photos for the Beatles' Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band LP.

Southern attended the Cannes Film Festival
Cannes Film Festival
The Cannes International Film Festival , is an annual film festival held in Cannes, France, which previews new films of all genres including documentaries from around the world. Founded in 1946, it is among the world's most prestigious and publicized film festivals...

 in the spring of 1966, where he met Andy Warhol
Andy Warhol
Andrew Warhola , known as Andy Warhol, was an American painter, printmaker, and filmmaker who was a leading figure in the visual art movement known as pop art...

 and Gerard Malanga
Gerard Malanga
Gerard Joseph Malanga is an American poet, photographer, filmmaker, curator and archivist.-Early life:Born in the Bronx, New York, Malanga graduated from the School of Industrial Art in Manhattan and attended Wagner College on Staten Island...

, and he remained in touch with Malanga for many years. On his return to London he continued work on the Casino Royale screenplay and a screen adaptation of The Magic Christian for Peter Sellers, who was planning his film version. Sandy Lieberson optioned Southern's first novel Flash and Filigree and United Artists
United Artists
United Artists Corporation is an American film studio. The original studio of that name was founded in 1919 by D. W. Griffith, Charles Chaplin, Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks....

 optioned Candy. Michael Cooper also introduced Southern to the Anthony Burgess
Anthony Burgess
John Burgess Wilson  – who published under the pen name Anthony Burgess – was an English author, poet, playwright, composer, linguist, translator and critic. The dystopian satire A Clockwork Orange is Burgess's most famous novel, though he dismissed it as one of his lesser works...

 novel A Clockwork Orange
A Clockwork Orange
A Clockwork Orange is a 1962 dystopian novella by Anthony Burgess. The novel contains an experiment in language: the characters often use an argot called "Nadsat", derived from Russian....

, and Southern later encouraged Stanley Kubrick to make his film version of the book after MGM refused to back Kubrick's planned film on Napoleon. Southern and Cooper then began to plan their own film adaptation of the novel, to star Mick Jagger and The Rolling Stones as Alex and his gang of droogs.

Through Si Litvinoff, Southern optioned the book for the bargain price of $1,000 (against a final price of $10,000) and Lieberson and David Puttnam
David Puttnam
David Terence Puttnam, Baron Puttnam, CBE, FRSA is a British film producer. He sits on the Labour benches in the House of Lords, although he is not principally a politician.-Early life:...

 set up a development deal with Paramount
Paramount Pictures
Paramount Pictures Corporation is an American film production and distribution company, located at 5555 Melrose Avenue in Hollywood. Founded in 1912 and currently owned by media conglomerate Viacom, it is America's oldest existing film studio; it is also the last major film studio still...

, who underwrote a draft by Southern and Cooper. Actor David Hemmings
David Hemmings
David Edward Leslie Hemmings was an English film, theatre and television actor as well as a film and television director and producer....

 was briefly considered for the role of Alex—much to the chagrin of Cooper and the Stones—and the director's chair was initially offered to Richard Lester
Richard Lester
Richard Lester is an American film director based in Britain. Lester is notable for his work with The Beatles in the 1960s and his work on the Superman film series in the 1980s.-Early years and television:...

, who turned it down. Southern's old friend Ted Kotcheff was then approached, but at the project stalled after the treatment was sent to the British Lord Chamberlain
Lord Chamberlain
The Lord Chamberlain or Lord Chamberlain of the Household is one of the chief officers of the Royal Household in the United Kingdom and is to be distinguished from the Lord Great Chamberlain, one of the Great Officers of State....

, who returned it, unread, with a note attached that said: "I know this book and there is no way you can make a movie of it. It deals with youthful incitement, which is illegal." As a result, Paramount put it into 'turnaround' and it was eventually picked up by Kubrick three years later.

During the frequent downtime during the filming of Casino Royale, Filmways hired Southern to do a "tightening and brightening" job on the screenplay of the occult thriller Eye of the Devil
Eye of the Devil
Eye of the Devil is a 1966 British film with occult and supernatural themes directed by J. Lee Thompson and starring Deborah Kerr and David Niven. The film was set in rural France and filmed in England.-Plot:...

, which starred David Niven
David Niven
James David Graham Niven , known as David Niven, was a British actor and novelist, best known for his roles as Phileas Fogg in Around the World in 80 Days and Sir Charles Lytton, a.k.a. "the Phantom", in The Pink Panther...

 and featured Sharon Tate
Sharon Tate
Sharon Marie Tate was an American actress. During the 1960s she played small television roles before appearing in several films. After receiving positive reviews for her comedic performances, she was hailed as one of Hollywood's promising newcomers and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for...

 in her first film role. Through the winter of 1966–67 he also began work on the screenplay for Roger Vadim
Roger Vadim
Roger Vadim was a French screenwriter, director, and producer as well as a journalist, author and actor, who launched Brigitte Bardot's career in the film And God Created Woman.-Early life:...

's Barbarella
Barbarella (film)
Barbarella is a 1968 Franco-Italian science fiction film based on Jean-Claude Forrest's French Barbarella comics. The film was directed by Roger Vadim and stars Jane Fonda, who was Vadim's wife at the time.-Plot:...

, and he contributed to a TV version of The Desperate Hours
The Desperate Hours (film)
The Desperate Hours is a 1955 film from Paramount Pictures starring Humphrey Bogart and Fredric March. The movie was produced and directed by William Wyler and based on a novel and play of the same name written by Joseph Hayes which were loosely based on actual events.The original Broadway...

directed by Ted Kotcheff and starring George Segal
George Segal
George Segal is an American film, stage and television actor.-Early life:George Segal, Jr. was born in 1934 Great Neck, Long Island, New York, the son of Fannie Blanche and George Segal, Sr. He was educated at George School, a private Quaker preparatory boarding school near Newtown, Bucks County,...

 and Yvette Mimieux
Yvette Mimieux
Yvette Carmen Mimieux is a retired American movie and television actress.-Early life and career:Yvette Mimieux was born in Los Angeles, California, to a French father and Mexican mother, Carmen Montemayor...

.

The June 1, 1967, release of Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band gave Southern pop-culture immortality, thanks to his photograph being included (on the recommendation of Ringo Starr
Ringo Starr
Richard Starkey, MBE better known by his stage name Ringo Starr, is an English musician and actor who gained worldwide fame as the drummer for The Beatles. When the band formed in 1960, Starr was a member of another Liverpool band, Rory Storm and the Hurricanes. He became The Beatles' drummer in...

) on the album's front-cover collage, which was photographed by Cooper. Soon after, a collection of his short writing Red-Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes
Red-Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes
Red-Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes is a collection of essays and short fiction works by satirical novelist and screenwriter Terry Southern, which was first published in 1967....

, was published in the US. It received favorable reviews from critics, and the cover blurb
Blurb
A blurb is a short summary or some words of praise accompanying a creative work, usually used on books without giving away any details, that is usually referring to the words on the back of the book jacket but also commonly seen on DVD and video cases, web portals, and news websites.- History :The...

 featured a highly complimentary quote from Gore Vidal
Gore Vidal
Gore Vidal is an American author, playwright, essayist, screenwriter, and political activist. His third novel, The City and the Pillar , outraged mainstream critics as one of the first major American novels to feature unambiguous homosexuality...

, who described Southern as "the most profoundly witty writer of our generation".

Work on Barbarella continued through to late 1967, and Southern convinced Vadim to cast his friend Anita Pallenberg
Anita Pallenberg
Anita Pallenberg is an Italian-born actress, model, and fashion designer. She was the romantic partner of Rolling Stones multi-instrumentalist and guitarist Brian Jones and later the partner of the guitarist of the same band Keith Richards, from 1967 to 1979, by whom she has two surviving...

 in the role of the Black Queen. In December 1967 the film version of Candy
Candy (1968 film)
Candy is a 1968 sex farce film directed by Christian Marquand based on the 1958 novel by Terry Southern and Mason Hoffenberg, from a screenplay by Buck Henry. The film satirizes pornographic stories through the adventures of its naive heroine, Candy, played by Ewa Aulin...

began shooting in Rome with director Christian Marquand
Christian Marquand
Christian Marquand was a French director, actor and screenwriter working in French cinema. A native of Marseille, he was born to a Spanish father and an Arabic mother his sister was film director Nadine Trintignant, and he can be seen as a heartthrob in French movies of the 1950s.His first film...

. It starred newcomer Ewa Aulin
Ewa Aulin
Ewa Brigitta Aulin is a Swedish actress who appeared in a number of Italian and some American films in the 1960s and 1970s...

 in the title role and like Casino Royale it featured a host of stars in cameo roles, including Richard Burton
Richard Burton
Richard Burton, CBE was a Welsh actor. He was nominated seven times for an Academy Award, six of which were for Best Actor in a Leading Role , and was a recipient of BAFTA, Golden Globe and Tony Awards for Best Actor. Although never trained as an actor, Burton was, at one time, the highest-paid...

, Marlon Brando
Marlon Brando
Marlon Brando, Jr. was an American movie star and political activist. "Unchallenged as the most important actor in modern American Cinema" according to the St...

, John Astin
John Astin
John Allen Astin is an American actor who has appeared in numerous films and television shows, and is best known for the role of Gomez Addams on The Addams Family, and other similarly eccentric comedic characters.-Early years:...

, Ringo Starr, Walter Matthau
Walter Matthau
Walter Matthau was an American actor best known for his role as Oscar Madison in The Odd Couple and his frequent collaborations with Odd Couple star Jack Lemmon, as well as his role as Coach Buttermaker in the 1976 comedy The Bad News Bears...

, and Anita Pallenberg
Anita Pallenberg
Anita Pallenberg is an Italian-born actress, model, and fashion designer. She was the romantic partner of Rolling Stones multi-instrumentalist and guitarist Brian Jones and later the partner of the guitarist of the same band Keith Richards, from 1967 to 1979, by whom she has two surviving...

.

The original screenplay by Southern was rewritten by Buck Henry
Buck Henry
Henry Zuckerman, better known as Buck Henry , is an American actor, writer, film director, and television director.-Early life:...

 (who also has an uncredited cameo in the film). Like Casino Royale, it proved to be a chaotic production and failed to live up to expectations; it was generally panned by critics on its release in December 1968 and its impact was further weakened by the financial collapse of its major backer.

Easy Rider / The End Of The Road


As production on Barbarella wound down in October 1967, director Roger Vadim
Roger Vadim
Roger Vadim was a French screenwriter, director, and producer as well as a journalist, author and actor, who launched Brigitte Bardot's career in the film And God Created Woman.-Early life:...

 began shooting an episode for the omnibus film Spirits of the Dead, which co-starred Peter Fonda
Peter Fonda
Peter Henry Fonda is an American actor. He is the son of Henry Fonda, brother of Jane Fonda, and father of Bridget and Justin Fonda...

 and Jane Fonda
Jane Fonda
Jane Fonda is an American actress, writer, political activist, former fashion model, and fitness guru. She rose to fame in the 1960s with films such as Barbarella and Cat Ballou. She has won two Academy Awards and received several other movie awards and nominations during more than 50 years as an...

. It was during the making of this film that Peter Fonda told Southern of his idea for a 'modern Western'. Fonda pitched his idea to his friend Dennis Hopper on his return to America, and Southern added his weight to the project, agreeing to work on the script for scale ($350 per week).

Southern, Fonda, and Hopper met in New York City in November 1967 to develop their ideas. These brainstorming sessions formed the basis of the screenplay that Southern then wrote from December 1967 to April 1968. On the basis of Southern's treatment, Raybert Productions
Raybert Productions
Raybert Productions was a 1960s production company, founded by Robert Rafelson and Bert Schneider. Its principal works were the wildly successful situation comedy The Monkees , and the 1969 movie Easy Rider...

, which had produced the TV series The Monkees
The Monkees (TV series)
The Monkees is an American situation comedy that aired on NBC from September 1966 to March 1968. The series follows the adventures of four young men trying to make a name for themselves as rock 'n roll singers. The show introduced a number of innovative new-wave film techniques to series...

and the Monkees movie Head
Head (film)
Head is a 1968 psychedelic comedy-adventure major motion picture, starring TV group The Monkees , and distributed by Columbia Pictures...

, agreed to finance the film with a budget of US$350,000 (in return for one-third of the profits), with Columbia Pictures
Columbia Pictures
Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. is an American film production and distribution company. Columbia Pictures now forms part of the Columbia TriStar Motion Picture Group, owned by Sony Pictures Entertainment, a subsidiary of the Japanese conglomerate Sony. It is one of the leading film companies...

 agreeing to distribute the film.

Southern would eventually share the writing credit with Hopper and Fonda, but there has been dispute over their various contributions to the screenplay. Hopper and Fonda later tried to downplay Southern's input, claiming that many sections of the film (such as the graveyard scene) had been improvised, whereas others involved in the production (including Southern himself) have asserted that most of these scenes were fully scripted and primarily written by him.

Although the basic idea for the film was Fonda's, the title Easy Rider was provided by Southern (it is an American slang term for a man who lives off the earnings of a prostitute) and Southern wrote several early drafts of the screenplay. During the production Southern became concerned at Hopper and Fonda's replacement of his writing by what he described as "dumb-bell dialogue", and more of the material Southern wrote for the main characters was cut out during the editing process.

Southern had originally written the character of the small-town lawyer (played by Jack Nicholson
Jack Nicholson
John Joseph "Jack" Nicholson is an American actor, film director, producer and writer. He is renowned for his often dark portrayals of neurotic characters. Nicholson has been nominated for an Academy Award twelve times, and has won the Academy Award for Best Actor twice: for One Flew Over the...

) with his friend Rip Torn in mind, but Torn dropped out of the project after an altercation with Hopper in a New York restaurant, in which the two actors almost came to blows.

Southern continued to work on other projects while Easy Rider began shooting—he completed his next novel Blue Movie
Blue Movie (novel)
Blue Movie is a satirical novel by Terry Southern about the making of a high-budget pornographic film featuring major movie stars. It was published in 1970....

; began working with the painter Larry Rivers
Larry Rivers
Larry Rivers was an American artist, musician, filmmaker and occasional actor. Rivers resided and maintained studios in New York City, Southampton, New York and Zihuatanejo, Mexico.-Biography:...

 on a book project The Donkey and The Darling; he worked on the final drafts of the screenplay for The Magic Christian, and he began discussions with Aram Avakian
Aram Avakian
Aram A. Avakian was an American film editor and director.Directed ground-breaking indie film End of the Road- Life and work :...

 about a movie project called The End of the Road.

In summer 1968 he was approached by Esquire magazine to cover the 1968 Democratic National Convention
1968 Democratic National Convention
The 1968 Democratic National Convention of the U.S. Democratic Party was held at the International Amphitheatre in Chicago, Illinois, from August 26 to August 29, 1968. Because Democratic President Lyndon Johnson had announced he would not seek a second term, the purpose of the convention was to...

 in Chicago. Southern attended the event with William S. Burroughs
William S. Burroughs
William Seward Burroughs II was an American novelist, poet, essayist and spoken word performer. A primary figure of the Beat Generation and a major postmodernist author, he is considered to be "one of the most politically trenchant, culturally influential, and innovative artists of the 20th...

, Jean Genet
Jean Genet
Jean Genet was a prominent and controversial French novelist, playwright, poet, essayist, and political activist. Early in his life he was a vagabond and petty criminal, but later took to writing...

 (a last-minute substitute for Samuel Beckett
Samuel Beckett
Samuel Barclay Beckett was an Irish avant-garde novelist, playwright, theatre director, and poet. He wrote both in English and French. His work offers a bleak, tragicomic outlook on human nature, often coupled with black comedy and gallows humour.Beckett is widely regarded as among the most...

) and John Sack
John Sack
John Sack was an American literary journalist and war correspondent. He was the only journalist to cover each American war over half a century.-Biography:...

, and his friend Michael Cooper took photographs; Southern and friends were present when peaceful demonstrations erupted into savage violence after protesters were attacked by police. Southern's essay on the event, was his last work published by Esquire.

The editing of Easy Rider continued for many months, as Hopper and Fonda argued over the final form. Hopper ditched a planned score by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young and returned to the group of songs he had used for the rough cut, which included music by The Byrds
The Byrds
The Byrds were an American rock band, formed in Los Angeles, California in 1964. The band underwent multiple line-up changes throughout its existence, with frontman Roger McGuinn remaining the sole consistent member until the group disbanded in 1973...

, Jimi Hendrix
Jimi Hendrix
James Marshall "Jimi" Hendrix was an American guitarist and singer-songwriter...

, and Steppenwolf
Steppenwolf (band)
Steppenwolf are a Canadian-American rock group that was prominent in the late 1960s. The group was formed in 1967 in Los Angeles by vocalist John Kay, guitarist Michael Monarch, bassist Rushton Moreve, keyboardist Goldy McJohn and drummer Jerry Edmonton after the dissolution of Toronto group The...

. Easy Rider caused a sensation when it was screened in Cannes and it went on to become the fourth highest-grossing American film of 1969, taking $19 million, and receiving two Academy Award nominations. Although it brought Hopper and Fonda great financial and artistic rewards and helped to open up the Hollywood 'system' for young independent producers, little of the profit was shared with Southern, and the true extent of his contributions was repeatedly downplayed by the other principals.

Southern's next major screenplay was The End of the Road (1970 film)
The End of the Road (1970 film)
End of the Road is a 1970 film directed by Aram Avakian. It stars Stacy Keach and Harris Yulin. It was rated X for an abortion scene. It won an award at the 1970 Locarno International Film Festival. A nine-page Life Magazine article was published on Aram Avakian and End of the Road on November 7,...

, adapted from the novel by John Barth
John Barth
John Simmons Barth is an American novelist and short-story writer, known for the postmodernist and metafictive quality of his work.-Life:...

 and starring Stacy Keach
Stacy Keach
Stacy Keach is an American actor and narrator. He is most famous for his dramatic roles; however, he has done narration work in educational programming on PBS and the Discovery Channel, as well as some comedy and musical...

 Dorothy Tristan and James Earl Jones
James Earl Jones
James Earl Jones is an American actor. He is well-known for his distinctive bass voice and for his portrayal of characters of substance, gravitas and leadership...

. It was directed by his friend Aram Avakian
Aram Avakian
Aram A. Avakian was an American film editor and director.Directed ground-breaking indie film End of the Road- Life and work :...

. The director and the film were the subject of a major spread in Life
Life (magazine)
Life generally refers to three American magazines:*A humor and general interest magazine published from 1883 to 1936. Time founder Henry Luce bought the magazine in 1936 solely so that he could acquire the rights to its name....

Magazine in November 1969, which reportedly led to a critical backlash, and the film was savaged on its release, and was especially criticised because of a graphic scene in which the main female character undergoes an abortion
Abortion
Abortion is defined as the termination of pregnancy by the removal or expulsion from the uterus of a fetus or embryo prior to viability. An abortion can occur spontaneously, in which case it is usually called a miscarriage, or it can be purposely induced...

, which led to the film being classified with an "X" rating.

The Magic Christian


The Magic Christian was one of Peter Sellers' favourite books—his gift of a copy to Stanley Kubrick led to Southern being hired for Dr Strangelove – and a film version of the book had long been a project for the actor, who intended to play the lead role of Guy Grand. In 1968 Southern was hired for the production and he worked on a dozen drafts of the screenplay. Sellers also tinkered with it while Southern was working on The End of the Road. At Sellers' request, a draft by Southern and director Joseph McGrath
Joseph McGrath (film director)
Joseph 'Apocalypse' McGrath , sometimes referred to as "'Apocalypse'" Joe McGrath or Croisette Meubles, is a Scottish film director and screenwriter best remembered for his two films, Casino Royale and The Magic Christian . McGrath frequently collaborated with Spike Milligan and Peter Sellers...

 was re-written by Graham Chapman
Graham Chapman
Graham Arthur Chapman was a British comedian, physician, writer, actor, and one of the six members of the Monty Python comedy troupe.-Early life and education:...

 and John Cleese
John Cleese
John Marwood Cleese is an English actor, comedian, writer, and film producer. He achieved success at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and as a scriptwriter and performer on The Frost Report...

, two young British TV comedy writers who would shortly become famous as members of the Monty Python
Monty Python
Monty Python was a British surreal comedy group who created their influential Monty Python's Flying Circus, a British television comedy sketch show that first aired on the BBC on 5 October 1969. Forty-five episodes were made over four series...

 team. Cleese later described McGrath as having "no idea of comedy structure" and complained that the film ended up as "a series of celebrity walk-ons."

The film was shot in London between February and May 1969. The cast was headed by Sellers (as Guy Grand) and Ringo Starr as his son Youngman Grand (a new character created for the movie), with cameo appearances by Spike Milligan
Spike Milligan
Terence Alan Patrick Seán "Spike" Milligan Hon. KBE was a comedian, writer, musician, poet, playwright, soldier and actor. His early life was spent in India, where he was born, but the majority of his working life was spent in the United Kingdom. He became an Irish citizen in 1962 after the...

, Christopher Lee
Christopher Lee
Sir Christopher Frank Carandini Lee, CBE, CStJ is an English actor and musician. Lee initially portrayed villains and became famous for his role as Count Dracula in a string of Hammer Horror films...

, Laurence Harvey
Laurence Harvey
Laurence Harvey was a Lithuanian-born actor who achieved fame in British and American films.- Early life :Harvey maintained throughout his life that his birth name was Laruschka Mischa Skikne. However, his legal name was Zvi Mosheh Skikne. He was the youngest of three boys born to Ber "Boris" and...

, Raquel Welch
Raquel Welch
Jo Raquel Tejada , better known as Raquel Welch, is an American actress, author and sex symbol. Welch came to attention as a "new-star" on the 20th Century-Fox lot in the mid-1960s. She posed iconically in a animal skin bikini for the British-release One Million Years B.C. , for which she may be...

, Roman Polanski
Roman Polanski
Roman Polanski is a French-Polish film director, producer, writer and actor. Having made films in Poland, Britain, France and the USA, he is considered one of the few "truly international filmmakers."...

 and Yul Brynner
Yul Brynner
Yul Brynner was a Russian-born actor of stage and film. He was best known for his portrayal of Mongkut, king of Siam, in the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical The King and I, for which he won an Academy Award for Best Actor for the film version; he also played the role more than 4,500 times on...

. As with Dr Strangelove, Sellers habitually improvised on the script during filming. During production McGrath and Southern discussed a future project based on the life of gangster Dutch Schultz
Dutch Schultz
Dutch Schultz was a New York City-area Jewish American gangster of the 1920s and 1930s who made his fortune in organized crime-related activities such as bootlegging alcohol and the numbers racket...

, to be made in collaboration with William Burroughs and Alexander Trocchi, but nothing came of it.

The Magic Christian ends with a scene in which Grand fills a huge vat with offal and excrement and then throws money into the fetid mixture to demonstrate how far people will go to get money for nothing. The original plan was to film the climactic scene at the Statue of Liberty
Statue of Liberty
The Statue of Liberty is a colossal neoclassical sculpture on Liberty Island in New York Harbor, designed by Frédéric Bartholdi and dedicated on October 28, 1886...

 in New York, and the US National Park Service
National Park Service
The National Park Service is the U.S. federal agency that manages all national parks, many national monuments, and other conservation and historical properties with various title designations...

 agreed to the request. Sellers, McGrath and Southern then travelled to New York on the Queen Elizabeth 2 (at a reported cost of $10,000 per person) but the studio then refused to pay for the shoot and it had to be relocated to London. The scene was eventually shot on the South Bank, near the site of the new National Theatre
Royal National Theatre
The Royal National Theatre in London is one of the United Kingdom's two most prominent publicly funded theatre companies, alongside the Royal Shakespeare Company...

 building. The film premiered on February 12, 1970, to lukewarm reviews.

Later career


Southern's pre-eminence waned rapidly in the 1970s—his screen credits decreased, his book and story output dwindled, and he acquired a reputation as an out-of-control substance abuser. He drank heavily and took various drugs, and his growing dependence on Dexamyl badly affected his health as he aged. His biographer Lee Hill suggests that Southern was, at worst, a functioning alcoholic and that his image was largely based on his occasional public appearances in New York, partying and socialising. In private, he was relatively sober and he remained a tireless worker. He continued to work on scores of projects, often balancing several at a time, but most never came to fruition, and these tended to divert him from work on his own novels and stories.

His later career was complicated by ongoing financial woes. In the late 1960s Southern's free-spending ways and lack of financial acumen led him into trouble and he was audited by the IRS on several occasions, resulting in heavy tax bills and penalties. Tax problems dogged him for the rest of his life. In 1968, he signed the “Writers and Editors War Tax Protest” pledge, vowing to refuse tax payments in protest against the Vietnam War.

Southern and his wife Carol had been put under surveillance by the FBI starting in 1965.

The seventies


In December 1970, Southern found himself in the position of having to beg Dennis Hopper for a profit point on Easy Rider—a request Hopper refused. Southern's tenuous financial position was in contrast to that of his creative partners, who became wealthy thanks to the film's commercial success. For the rest of his life Southern was repeatedly forced to take on work simply in order to pay tax bills and penalties, and on many occasions he struggled to keep up the mortgage payments on the East Canaan farm.

Blue Movie was published in the fall of 1970, with a dedication to Stanley Kubrick. It received only moderate reviews, and sales were hampered by the refusal of the New York Times to run ads for the book.

Southern worked on a variety of screenplays after Easy Rider, including God Is Love, DJ (based on a book by Norman Mailer
Norman Mailer
Norman Kingsley Mailer was an American novelist, journalist, essayist, poet, playwright, screenwriter, and film director.Along with Truman Capote, Joan Didion, Hunter S...

), Hand-Painted Hearts (based on a story by Thomas Baum), and Drift with Tony Goodstone. While Fonda and Hopper continued to assert that much of Easy Rider had been improvised, Southern remained largely silent about his role, although he was prompted to write a letter to the New York Times to counter a claim that Jack Nicholson had improvised his speech during the 'campfire' scene.

Terry and Carol Southern divorced in early 1972 but remained on good terms and Southern continued to support and help raise their son Nile. The attentions of the IRS had also affected Carol, who had an inheritance from her late father seized as part of Terry's tax settlement. She later became an editor with Crown Publishing, and married critic Alexander Keneas.

Southern's other unrealised projects during this period included an adaptation of Nathanael West
Nathanael West
Nathanael West was a US author, screenwriter and satirist.- Early life :...

's A Cool Million
A Cool Million
A Cool Million: The Dismantling of Lemuel Pitkin is Nathanael West's third novel, published in 1934. It is a brutal satire of Horatio Alger's novels and their eternal optimism.-Plot summary:...

, and a screenplay called Merlin, based on Arthurian legend, which was written with Mick Jagger
Mick Jagger
Sir Michael Philip "Mick" Jagger is an English musician, singer and songwriter, best known as the lead vocalist and a founding member of The Rolling Stones....

 in mind for the lead role.

Southern covered the Rolling Stones 1972 American Tour
The Rolling Stones American Tour 1972
The Rolling Stones American Tour 1972, often referred to as the S.T.P. Tour , was a much-publicized and much-written-about concert tour of The United States and Canada in June and July 1972 by The Rolling Stones...

, where he met and began a collaboration with Peter Beard, and they would work sporadically on the never-filmed screenplay The End of the Game until Southern's death. Southern immersed himself in the bacchanalian atmosphere of the tour, and his essay on the Stones tour, "Riding The Lapping Tongue", was published in the August 12, 1972, edition of Saturday Review. He also wrote a bawdy anti-Nixon skit which was performed at a George McGovern
George McGovern
George Stanley McGovern is an historian, author, and former U.S. Representative, U.S. Senator, and the Democratic Party nominee in the 1972 presidential election....

 fundraiser, and "Twirlin' at Ole Miss" was included in The New Journalism
The New Journalism
The New Journalism is a 1973 anthology of journalism edited by Tom Wolfe and E. W. Johnson. The book is both a manifesto for a new type of journalism by Wolfe, and a collection of examples of New Journalism by American writers, covering a variety of subjects from the frivolous to the deadly serious...

.

By late 1972 Southern's money troubles had become acute, so he took a position as a lecturer in screenwriting at New York University
New York University
New York University is a private, nonsectarian research university based in New York City. NYU's main campus is situated in the Greenwich Village section of Manhattan...

, where he taught from the fall of 1972 to the spring of 1974. His students included Amy Heckerling
Amy Heckerling
Amy Heckerling is an American film director, one of the few female directors to have produced multiple box-office hits.-Early life:...

, who directed Fast Times at Ridgemont High
Fast Times at Ridgemont High
Fast Times at Ridgemont High is a 1982 American coming-of-age teen comedy film written by Cameron Crowe and adapted from his 1981 book of the same name...

and Clueless, Steven Aronson, and Hollywood biographer Lee Server
Lee Server
Lee Server is an American writer. Server has written several books aboutHollywood cinema and pulp fiction. He is a graduate of New York University Film School...

. Southern began writing for National Lampoon in November 1972 and served on the jury at the 1972 New York Erotic Film Festival with William S. Burroughs, Gore Vidal, and Sylvia Miles
Sylvia Miles
-Early life and career:Miles was born Sylvia Reuben Lee in New York City, the daughter of Belle and Reuben Lee, a furniture maker....

.

In 1973 Southern wrote a new screenplay called Double Date, which in some respects anticipated the later David Cronenberg
David Cronenberg
David Paul Cronenberg, OC, FRSC is a Canadian filmmaker, screenwriter and actor. He is one of the principal originators of what is commonly known as the body horror or venereal horror genre. This style of filmmaking explores people's fears of bodily transformation and infection. In his films, the...

 film Dead Ringers
Dead Ringers (film)
Dead Ringers is a 1988 psychological horror film starring Jeremy Irons in a dual role as identical twin gynecologists. Director David Cronenberg co-wrote the screenplay with Norman Snider; their script was based on the novel Twins by Bari Wood and Jack Geasland...

, but he eventually abandoned it. In early 1974 John Calley
John Calley
John Calley was an American film studio executive and producer. He was quite influential during his years at Warner Bros...

 hired Southern to write a screenplay of Blue Movie, with Mike Nichols
Mike Nichols
Mike Nichols is a German-born American television, stage and film director, writer, producer and comedian. He began his career in the 1950s as one half of the comedy duo Nichols and May, along with Elaine May. In 1968 he won the Academy Award for Best Director for the film The Graduate...

 slated to direct, but the deal eventually fell apart due to a protracted dispute between Warners and Ringo Starr, who then owned the screen rights.

A new short story, "Fixing Up Ert", was published in the September 1974 edition of Oui magazine, and around this time Norwegian director Ingmar Ejve hired Southern to write a screenplay based on the Carl-Henning Wijkmark novel The Hunters of Karin Hall. His friend Ted Kotcheff
Ted Kotcheff
Ted Kotcheff , sometimes credited as William Kotcheff or William T. Kotcheff, is a Canadian film and television director, who is well known for his work on several high-profile British television productions and as a director of films such as First Blood.-Early life:Kotcheff was born William...

 hired Southern to write the screenplay for the Watergate-themed project A Piece of Bloody Cake, but he was unable to get the script approved.

Southern's only on-screen credit during the 1970s was the teleplay Stop Thief!, written for the TV miniseries The American Parade. In the summer of 1976 Southern visited Rip Torn in New Mexico during the making of Nicolas Roeg
Nicolas Roeg
Nicolas Jack Roeg, CBE, BSC is an English film director and cinematographer.-Life and career:Roeg was born in London, the son of Mabel Gertrude and Jack Nicolas Roeg...

's film version of The Man Who Fell to Earth
The Man Who Fell to Earth (film)
The Man Who Fell to Earth is a 1976 British science fiction film directed by Nicolas Roeg.The film is based on the 1963 novel of the same name by Walter Tevis, about an extraterrestrial who crash lands on Earth seeking a way to ship water to his planet, which is suffering from a severe drought...

, and Southern made a cameo appearance in the crowd in the scene where Newton is arrested just before he boards his spacecraft. Roeg used an excerpt from The End of the Road on one of the TV screens, in the scene in which Newton watches multiple TV sets at the same time. Southern wrote the pornographic film Randy: The Electric Lady, which was made by young director Philip D. Schuman, who had earlier made a short film of Southern's Red Dirt
Red-Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes
Red-Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes is a collection of essays and short fiction works by satirical novelist and screenwriter Terry Southern, which was first published in 1967....

, which won a Hugo Award at the Chicago International Film Festival in 1973.

In 1977 and 1978 Southern was embroiled in a lengthy and chaotic attempt to make a film version of William S. Burroughs' novel Junky
Junkie (novel)
Junkie is a 1953 semi-autobiographical novel by William S. Burroughs. It was his first published novel and has come to be considered a seminal text on the lifestyle of heroin addicts in the early 1950s. Burroughs' working title was Junk.-Inspiration:The novel was considered unpublishable more than...

, but the project collapsed due to the erratic behaviour of its principal backer, Jules Stein. In August 1978 Southern wrote a skit called "Haven Can Wait", which was performed at an all-star benefit for Abbie Hoffman
Abbie Hoffman
Abbot Howard "Abbie" Hoffman was a political and social activist who co-founded the Youth International Party ....

, with a cast that included Jon Voight
Jon Voight
Jonathan Vincent "Jon" Voight is an American actor. He has received an Academy Award, out of four nominations, and three Golden Globe Awards, out of nine nominations. Voight is the father of actress Angelina Jolie....

, Allen Ginsberg
Allen Ginsberg
Irwin Allen Ginsberg was an American poet and one of the leading figures of the Beat Generation in the 1950s. He vigorously opposed militarism, materialism and sexual repression...

, Bobby Seale
Bobby Seale
Robert George "Bobby" Seale , is an activist. He is known for co-founding the Black Panther Party with Huey Newton.-Early life:...

, and Rip Torn.

Another unsuccessful project from this period was his work for Si Litvinoff on the screenplay for the opera drama Aria. Southern's script was considered 'below par' and was rejected by Fox. A new story was published in the 20th-anniversary issue of the Paris Review and Blue Movie was optioned by Andrew Braunsberg.

Peter Sellers made few significant films during the 1970s, but he scored a hit with Being There
Being There
Being There is a 1979 American comedy-drama film directed by Hal Ashby. Adapted from the 1971 novella written by Jerzy Kosinski, the screenplay was coauthored by Kosinski and Robert C. Jones. The film stars Peter Sellers, Shirley MacLaine, Melvyn Douglas, Jack Warden, Richard A...

(1979). Around this time, Sellers had a chance meeting with an arms dealer during an air flight, and this inspired him to contact Southern and ask him to write a script on the subject of the shady world of the international arms trade. The resulting screenplay, Grossing Out, was reputed to have been of high quality, and Hal Ashby
Hal Ashby
Hal Ashby was an American film director and film editor.-Birth and early years:Born William Hal Ashby in Ogden, Utah, Ashby grew up in a Mormon household and had a tumultuous childhood as part of a dysfunctional family which included the divorce of his parents, his father's suicide and his...

 was provisionally attached as director, but the project went into limbo after Sellers' sudden death from a heart attack on 24 July 1980.

The eighties


Southern was hired by Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live is a live American late-night television sketch comedy and variety show developed by Lorne Michaels and Dick Ebersol. The show premiered on NBC on October 11, 1975, under the original title of NBC's Saturday Night.The show's sketches often parody contemporary American culture...

head writer Michael O'Donoghue
Michael O'Donoghue
Michael O'Donoghue was a writer and performer. He was known for his dark and destructive style of comedy and humor, was a major contributor to National Lampoon magazine, and was the first head writer of Saturday Night Live.-Childhood:O'Donoghue was born Michael Henry Donohue in Sauquoit, New York...

 to write for the 1981–82 series of the NBC show. He had trouble fitting in with the writing team; many of his ideas were rejected. He indulged in the drug taking and used cocaine
Cocaine
Cocaine is a crystalline tropane alkaloid that is obtained from the leaves of the coca plant. The name comes from "coca" in addition to the alkaloid suffix -ine, forming cocaine. It is a stimulant of the central nervous system, an appetite suppressant, and a topical anesthetic...

 heavily. Nevertheless, Southern was retained as a writer for some time after O'Donoghue was fired from the series.

Southern's involvement with SNL led to a collaboration with former SNL writer Nelson Lyon. Southern and Lyon worked on developing a project set in and around The Cotton Club in the 1930s, but it was eventually abandoned after Francis Ford Coppola
Francis Ford Coppola
Francis Ford Coppola is an American film director, producer and screenwriter. He is widely acclaimed as one of Hollywood's most innovative and influential film directors...

's similarly-themed film went into production.

During 1982–83 Southern worked with Kubrick's former production partner James B. Harris
James B. Harris
James B. Harris is a film screenwriter, producer and director. He worked with film director Stanley Kubrick as a producer on The Killing, Paths of Glory and Lolita...

 on a naval drama called The Gold Crew (later retitled Floaters), but Southern was diverted from this when he began working with Larry Rivers
Larry Rivers
Larry Rivers was an American artist, musician, filmmaker and occasional actor. Rivers resided and maintained studios in New York City, Southampton, New York and Zihuatanejo, Mexico.-Biography:...

 on an independent film project called At Z Beach.

In April 1983 he was approached to work on a planned sequel to Easy Rider called Biker Heaven. He had little to do with the script, but he was paid about $20,000, which was several times more than he had earned from the original. Around this time Stanley Kubrick requested some sample dialogue for a planned film adaptation of Arthur Schnitzler
Arthur Schnitzler
Dr. Arthur Schnitzler was an Austrian author and dramatist.- Biography :Arthur Schnitzler, son of a prominent Hungarian-Jewish laryngologist Johann Schnitzler and Luise Markbreiter , was born in Praterstraße 16, Leopoldstadt, Vienna, in the Austro-Hungarian...

's book Traumnovelle
Dream Story
Rhapsody: A Dream Novel, also known as Dream Story, is a 1926 novella by the Austrian writer Arthur Schnitzler. It details the thoughts and psychological transformations of Doctor Fridolin over a two-day period. In this short time, he meets many people who give a clue to the world Schnitzler is...

which was to star Steve Martin
Steve Martin
Stephen Glenn "Steve" Martin is an American actor, comedian, writer, playwright, producer, musician and composer....

, but Southern's bawdy submissions reportedly sabotaged any prospect of further involvement; Kubrick eventually made the film (as Eyes Wide Shut
Eyes Wide Shut
Eyes Wide Shut is a 1999 drama film based upon Arthur Schnitzler's 1926 novella Traumnovelle . The film was directed, produced and co-written by Stanley Kubrick, and was his last film. The story, set in and around New York City, follows the sexually-charged adventures of Dr...

, with Tom Cruise
Tom Cruise
Thomas Cruise Mapother IV , better known as Tom Cruise, is an American film actor and producer. He has been nominated for three Academy Awards and he has won three Golden Globe Awards....

 and Nicole Kidman
Nicole Kidman
Nicole Mary Kidman, AC is an American-born Australian actress, singer, film producer, spokesmodel, and humanitarian. After starring in a number of small Australian films and TV shows, Kidman's breakthrough was in the 1989 thriller Dead Calm...

) shortly before his death in 1999.

A new story by Southern was published in High Times in May 1983, and Hopper invited Southern to work on a planned biopic of Jim Morrison
Jim Morrison
James Douglas "Jim" Morrison was an American musician, singer, and poet, best known as the lead singer and lyricist of the rock band The Doors...

, which was to be backed by publisher Larry Flynt
Larry Flynt
Larry Claxton Flynt, Jr. is an American publisher and the president of Larry Flynt Publications . In 2003, Arena magazine listed him as the number one on the "50 Powerful People in Porn" list....

, but it soon emerged that Flynt did not own the screen rights to Morrison's story and the project collapsed.

Southern turned 60 in 1984, and his career continued to alternate between promise and disappointment. Flash and Filigree was reissued by Arbor House with a new introduction by William Burroughs, and Sandy Lieberson (now at Fox) hired him to work on a script called Intensive Heat, based on the life of jewel thief Albie Baker. Southern ran into problems with his long-overdue new book called Youngblood (later retitled Southern Idyll) —publishers Putnam
G. P. Putnam's Sons
G. P. Putnam's Sons was a major United States book publisher based in New York City, New York. Since 1996, it has been an imprint of the Penguin Group.-History:...

 eventually demanded the return of the $20,000 advance, and the novel was never finished. In 1985 Candy and The Magic Christian were reprinted by Penguin and Southern featured prominently in the Howard Brookner
Howard Brookner
Howard Brookner was an American film director. He produced and directed the documentary Burroughs about William S. Burroughs , and directed, co-produced and co-wrote Bloodhounds of Broadway ....

 documentary on William S. Burroughs.

Hawkeye


In October 1985 Southern was appointed as one of the directors of Hawkeye, a production company set up by his friend Harry Nilsson
Harry Nilsson
Harry Edward Nilsson III was an American singer-songwriter who achieved the peak of his commercial success in the early 1970s. On all but his earliest recordings he is credited as Nilsson...

 to oversee the various film and multimedia projects in which he was involved. Southern and Nilsson collaborated on several screenplays, including Obits, a Citizen Kane-style story about a journalist investigating the subject of a newspaper obituary, but the script was scathingly reviewed by a studio reader and was never given approval.

The only major Hawkeye project to see the light of day was The Telephone
The Telephone (film)
The Telephone is a 1988 independent film comedy starring Whoopi Goldberg as an out-of-work actress who starts doing some prank phone calls which created a chain of events. Actor Rip Torn makes his directorial debut with this film, with Elliott Gould and John Heard in supporting roles...

. Essentially a one-handed comedy-drama, it depicted the gradual mental disintegration of an out-of-work actor. It was written with Robin Williams
Robin Williams
Robin McLaurin Williams is an American actor and comedian. Rising to fame with his role as the alien Mork in the TV series Mork and Mindy, and later stand-up comedy work, Williams has performed in many feature films since 1980. He won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance...

 in mind but Williams turned it down. Nilsson and Southern then learned that comedian Whoopi Goldberg
Whoopi Goldberg
Whoopi Goldberg is an American comedian, actress, singer-songwriter, political activist, author and talk show host.Goldberg made her film debut in The Color Purple playing Celie, a mistreated black woman in the Deep South. She received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress and won...

 was keen to take the part and she asked Nilsson and Southern to rewrite it for her. New World Films agreed to produce it and Rip Torn signed on as director.

Production began in January 1987, but New World allowed Goldberg to 'improvise' freely on the screenplay, and she also replaced Torn's chosen DOP John Alonzo with her then husband. Torn battled with Goldberg and reportedly had to beg her to perform takes that stuck to the script. A year-long struggle then ensued between Hawkeye and New World/Goldberg over the rights to the final cut. Southern and Torn put together their own version, which screened at the Sundance Film Festival
Sundance Film Festival
The Sundance Film Festival is a film festival that takes place annually in Utah, in the United States. It is the largest independent cinema festival in the United States. Held in January in Park City, Salt Lake City, and Ogden, as well as at the Sundance Resort, the festival is a showcase for new...

 in January 1988; New World's version premiered in cinemas later that month to generally poor reviews.

The steady salary from Hawkeye was a considerable help to the perennially cash-strapped Southern, but the cheques stopped abruptly in late 1989 when Hawkeye folded—Nilsson discovered that his secretary-treasurer Cindy Sims had embezzled all the company funds (and most of the money Nilsson had earned from his music), leaving him virtually penniless. At this point Southern still owed the IRS some $30,000 in back taxes and $40,000 in penalties.

Apart from The Telephone, Southern's only published new output in the period 1985–90 was the liner notes for the Marianne Faithfull
Marianne Faithfull
Marianne Evelyn Faithfull is an award-winning English singer, songwriter and actress whose career has spanned five decades....

 album Strange Weather and a commentary on the Iran-Contra scandal in The Nation.

Last years


In February 1989 Southern was admitted to the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Hospital, where he underwent surgery for stomach cancer
Stomach cancer
Gastric cancer, commonly referred to as stomach cancer, can develop in any part of the stomach and may spread throughout the stomach and to other organs; particularly the esophagus, lungs, lymph nodes, and the liver...

. Soon after the surgery he was interviewed by Mike Golden, and excerpts were published in Reflex, Creative Writer, and Paris Review. After he recovered from his surgery, Southern collaborated with cartoonist R.O. Blechman on a project called Billionaire's Ball, based on the life of Howard Hughes
Howard Hughes
Howard Robard Hughes, Jr. was an American business magnate, investor, aviator, engineer, film producer, director, and philanthropist. He was one of the wealthiest people in the world...

.

Southern landed a job teaching at the Sundance Screenwriters Lab in the summer of 1989. He also assisted with the preparation and publication of Blinds and Shutters, a book on the photography of his late friend Michael Cooper, edited by Perry Richardson and published in a limited edition of 2000, with copies signed by Paul McCartney
Paul McCartney
Sir James Paul McCartney, MBE, Hon RAM, FRCM is an English musician, singer-songwriter and composer. Formerly of The Beatles and Wings , McCartney is listed in Guinness World Records as the "most successful musician and composer in popular music history", with 60 gold discs and sales of 100...

, Keith Richards
Keith Richards
Keith Richards is an English musician, songwriter, and founding member of the Rolling Stones. Rolling Stone magazine said Richards had created "rock's greatest single body of riffs", and placed him as the "10th greatest guitarist of all time." Fourteen songs written by Richards and songwriting...

, Sandy Lieberson, and Allen Ginsberg
Allen Ginsberg
Irwin Allen Ginsberg was an American poet and one of the leading figures of the Beat Generation in the 1950s. He vigorously opposed militarism, materialism and sexual repression...

.

During this time Southern met briefly with Canadian filmmaker David Cronenberg
David Cronenberg
David Paul Cronenberg, OC, FRSC is a Canadian filmmaker, screenwriter and actor. He is one of the principal originators of what is commonly known as the body horror or venereal horror genre. This style of filmmaking explores people's fears of bodily transformation and infection. In his films, the...

 to discuss a planned adaptation of Burroughs' Naked Lunch
Naked Lunch
Naked Lunch is a novel by William S. Burroughs originally published in 1959. The book is structured as a series of loosely-connected vignettes. Burroughs stated that the chapters are intended to be read in any order...

(which Cronenberg subsequently made) but the meeting was unsuccessful. Southern had no further involvement in the project. In November 1989 he talked with Victor Bockris
Victor Bockris
Victor Bockris is an English-born, U.S.-based author, primarily of biographies of artists, writers, and musicians.He has written about Lou Reed , Andy Warhol, Keith Richards, William S. Burroughs, Terry Southern, Blondie, Patti Smith, and Muhammad Ali...

 and the results were published in Interview
Interview (magazine)
Interview is an American magazine which has the nickname The Crystal Ball Of Pop. It was founded in late 1969 by artist Andy Warhol. The magazine features intimate conversations between some of the world's biggest celebrities, artists, musicians, and creative thinkers...

. His profile was given another small boost by the re-publication of the Red-Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes
Red-Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes
Red-Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes is a collection of essays and short fiction works by satirical novelist and screenwriter Terry Southern, which was first published in 1967....

collection in 1990.

With encouragement from his son Nile, Southern began work on a long-shelved novel, provisionally titled Behind The Grassy Knoll. Retitled Texas Summer, Southern's final novel was published in 1992 by Richard Seaver. Southern's last two major articles were published during 1991; a piece on the Texas band ZZ Top
ZZ Top
ZZ Top is an American rock band, sometimes referred to as "That Little Ol' Band from Texas". Their style, which is rooted in blues-based boogie rock, has come to incorporate elements of arena, southern, and boogie rock. The band, from Houston Texas, formed in 1969...

 appeared in the February edition of Spin
Spin (magazine)
Spin is a music magazine founded in 1985 by publisher Bob Guccione Jr.-History:In its early years, the magazine was noted for its broad music coverage with an emphasis on college-oriented rock music and on the ongoing emergence of hip-hop. The magazine was eclectic and bold, if sometimes haphazard...

, and an article on the Gulf War
Gulf War
The Persian Gulf War , commonly referred to as simply the Gulf War, was a war waged by a U.N.-authorized coalition force from 34 nations led by the United States, against Iraq in response to Iraq's invasion and annexation of Kuwait.The war is also known under other names, such as the First Gulf...

 appeared in The Nation
The Nation
The Nation is the oldest continuously published weekly magazine in the United States. The periodical, devoted to politics and culture, is self-described as "the flagship of the left." Founded on July 6, 1865, It is published by The Nation Company, L.P., at 33 Irving Place, New York City.The Nation...

on July 8. During the year Southern was also invited to teach screenwriting at Columbia University
Columbia University
Columbia University in the City of New York is a private, Ivy League university in Manhattan, New York City. Columbia is the oldest institution of higher learning in the state of New York, the fifth oldest in the United States, and one of the country's nine Colonial Colleges founded before the...

, and worked there until his death.

In 1992 he collaborated with Joseph McGrath
Joseph McGrath (film director)
Joseph 'Apocalypse' McGrath , sometimes referred to as "'Apocalypse'" Joe McGrath or Croisette Meubles, is a Scottish film director and screenwriter best remembered for his two films, Casino Royale and The Magic Christian . McGrath frequently collaborated with Spike Milligan and Peter Sellers...

 on a screenplay Starlets (later retitled Festival), which satirized the Cannes Film Festival
Cannes Film Festival
The Cannes International Film Festival , is an annual film festival held in Cannes, France, which previews new films of all genres including documentaries from around the world. Founded in 1946, it is among the world's most prestigious and publicized film festivals...

. During the year Peter Fonda reportedly tried to prevail on Southern to give up any claim on Easy Rider in exchange for a payment of $30,000, but Southern refused. Southern also assisted Perry Richardson with another book based around Michael Cooper's photography, The Early Stones, which was published late in the year.

Southern's health deteriorated in the last two years of his life, and he suffered a mild stroke in November 1992. In February 1993 he made his last visit home to Texas, where he attended a commemorative screening of Dr. Strangelove and The Magic Christian at the Dallas Museum of Art
Dallas Museum of Art
The Dallas Museum of Art is a major art museum located in the Arts District of downtown Dallas, Texas, USA, along Woodall Rodgers Freeway between St. Paul and Harwood. In 1984, the museum moved from its previous location in Fair Park to the Arts District, Dallas, Texas...

. During 1994 he made a series of recordings of readings from his works for a projected tribute project coordinated by producer Hal Willner
Hal Willner
Hal Willner is an American music producer working in recording, films, TV and live events. He is best known for assembling tribute albums and events featuring a wide variety of artists and musical styles...

 and Nelson Lyon, but the recording process was complicated by Southern's fragile health and the project remained unreleased until recently.

Southern's friend Harry Nilsson died of a heart attack in January 1994, and Little, Brown publishers subsequently commissioned Southern to write a memoir, but only two chapters were ever completed.

In September 1995 Southern received the Gotham Award for lifetime achievement by the Independent Film Producers Association at the age of 71. The Easy Rider controversy reared its head again shortly before Southern's death, when Dennis Hopper alleged during an interview with Jay Leno
Jay Leno
James Douglas Muir "Jay" Leno is an American stand-up comedian and television host.From 1992 to 2009, Leno was the host of NBC's The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Beginning in September 2009, Leno started a primetime talk show, titled The Jay Leno Show, which aired weeknights at 10:00 p.m. ,...

 that Rip Torn had been replaced because he had pulled a knife on Hopper during their argument in New York in 1968. Torn sued Hopper over the remark, and Southern agreed to testify on Torn's behalf. The case brought to light several of Southern's drafts of the Easy Rider screenplay, which effectively ended the dispute over his contributions.

In 1995, shortly before his death, Southern hired a new agent and began making arrangements for the republication of Candy and The Magic Christian by Grove. His final project was the text for a proposed history of Virgin Records
Virgin Records
Virgin Records is a British record label founded by English entrepreneur Richard Branson, Simon Draper, and Nik Powell in 1972. The company grew to be a worldwide music phenomenon, with platinum performers such as Roy Orbison, Devo, Genesis, Keith Richards, Janet Jackson, Culture Club, Lenny...

. He appeared at the Yale Summer Writing Program mid-year, and in October he made his last media appearance when he was interviewed for a documentary on Scottish novelist Alexander Trocchi
Alexander Trocchi
Alexander Whitelaw Robertson Trocchi was a Scottish novelist.-Early career:Trocchi was born in Glasgow to a Scottish mother and Italian father. After working as a seaman on the Murmansk convoys, he attended University of Glasgow. On graduation he obtained a traveling grant that enabled him to...

.

On October 25, 1995, Southern collapsed on the steps of Dodge College at Columbia on his way to lecture a class. He was taken to St Luke's Hospital, where he died four days later, on October 29.

In early 2003 Southern's archives of manuscripts, correspondence, and photographs were acquired by the New York Public Library
New York Public Library
The New York Public Library is the largest public library in North America and is one of the United States' most significant research libraries...

. The archives include correspondence and other items from George Plimpton
George Plimpton
George Ames Plimpton was an American journalist, writer, editor, and actor. He is widely known for his sports writing and for helping to found The Paris Review.-Early life:...

, Allen Ginsberg
Allen Ginsberg
Irwin Allen Ginsberg was an American poet and one of the leading figures of the Beat Generation in the 1950s. He vigorously opposed militarism, materialism and sexual repression...

, Norman Mailer
Norman Mailer
Norman Kingsley Mailer was an American novelist, journalist, essayist, poet, playwright, screenwriter, and film director.Along with Truman Capote, Joan Didion, Hunter S...

, Frank O'Hara
Frank O'Hara
Francis Russell "Frank" O'Hara was an American writer, poet and art critic. He was a member of the New York School of poetry.-Life:...

, Larry Rivers
Larry Rivers
Larry Rivers was an American artist, musician, filmmaker and occasional actor. Rivers resided and maintained studios in New York City, Southampton, New York and Zihuatanejo, Mexico.-Biography:...

, William Styron
William Styron
William Clark Styron, Jr. was an American novelist and essayist who won major literary awards for his work.For much of his career, Styron was best known for his novels, which included...

, V. S. Pritchett
V. S. Pritchett
Sir Victor Sawdon Pritchett CH CBE , was a British writer and critic. He was particularly known for his short stories, collected in a number of volumes...

, Gore Vidal
Gore Vidal
Gore Vidal is an American author, playwright, essayist, screenwriter, and political activist. His third novel, The City and the Pillar , outraged mainstream critics as one of the first major American novels to feature unambiguous homosexuality...

, Abbie Hoffman
Abbie Hoffman
Abbot Howard "Abbie" Hoffman was a political and social activist who co-founded the Youth International Party ....

, and Edmund Wilson
Edmund Wilson
Edmund Wilson was an American writer and literary and social critic and noted man of letters.-Early life:Wilson was born in Red Bank, New Jersey. His father, Edmund Wilson, Sr., was a lawyer and served as New Jersey Attorney General. Wilson attended The Hill School, a college preparatory...

, as well as John Lennon
John Lennon
John Winston Lennon, MBE was an English musician and singer-songwriter who rose to worldwide fame as one of the founding members of The Beatles, one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music...

, Ringo Starr
Ringo Starr
Richard Starkey, MBE better known by his stage name Ringo Starr, is an English musician and actor who gained worldwide fame as the drummer for The Beatles. When the band formed in 1960, Starr was a member of another Liverpool band, Rory Storm and the Hurricanes. He became The Beatles' drummer in...

, and the Rolling Stones.

A film adaptation of Southern's 1970 novel Blue Movie
Blue Movie (novel)
Blue Movie is a satirical novel by Terry Southern about the making of a high-budget pornographic film featuring major movie stars. It was published in 1970....

is currently in production from director Michael Dowse
Michael Dowse
Michael Dowse is a Canadian film director.Born and raised in London, Ontario, he was trained as a film editor. His first full-length movie, FUBAR was shot on a digital camera with a tiny budget, but was selected by the Sundance Film Festival and screened on the prestigious midnight slot, which had...

 and producer Marc Toberoff
Marc Toberoff
Marc Toberoff is a Hollywood producer and an intellectual property attorney. He has worked with the estates of Jack Kirby against Marvel Entertainment. He also represented Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster to receive credit and payments for new projects based on their character Superman.-External links:...

, to be released by Vertigo Films
Vertigo Films
Vertigo Films is a British film production and film distribution company.- History :In 2002, Vertigo Films was created by producers Allan Niblo , James Richardson , director Nick Love Vertigo Films is a British film production and film distribution company.- History :In 2002, Vertigo Films was...

.

Books

  • Flash and Filigree (1958)
  • Candy
    Candy (novel)
    Candy is a 1958 novel written by Maxwell Kenton in collaboration with Mason Hoffenberg published by Olympia Press. It was later published in North America by Putnam under the authors' own names...

    (with Mason Hoffenberg) (1958)
  • The Magic Christian
    The Magic Christian (novel)
    The Magic Christian is a 1959 comic novel by American author Terry Southern. In 1969 the novel was made into a film starring Peter Sellers and Ringo Starr, by director Joseph McGrath, also titled The Magic Christian...

    (1959)
  • Red-Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes
    Red-Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes
    Red-Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes is a collection of essays and short fiction works by satirical novelist and screenwriter Terry Southern, which was first published in 1967....

    (1967)
  • Blue Movie
    Blue Movie (novel)
    Blue Movie is a satirical novel by Terry Southern about the making of a high-budget pornographic film featuring major movie stars. It was published in 1970....

    (1970)
  • Texas Summer (1992)

Screenplays

  • Dr. Strangelove
    Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb
    Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, commonly known as Dr. Strangelove, is a 1964 black comedy film which satirizes the nuclear scare. It was directed, produced, and co-written by Stanley Kubrick, starring Peter Sellers and George C. Scott, and featuring Sterling...

    (with Stanley Kubrick
    Stanley Kubrick
    Stanley Kubrick was an American film director, writer, producer, and photographer who lived in England during most of the last four decades of his career...

     and Peter George) (1964) (Academy Award
    Academy Awards
    An Academy Award, also known as an Oscar, is an accolade bestowed by the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to recognize excellence of professionals in the film industry, including directors, actors, and writers...

     nomination)
  • The Loved One
    The Loved One (film)
    The Loved One is a 1965 black comedy film about the funeral business in Los Angeles, which is based on The Loved One: An Anglo-American Tragedy , a short satirical novel by Evelyn Waugh...

    (with Christopher Isherwood
    Christopher Isherwood
    Christopher William Bradshaw Isherwood was an English-American novelist.-Early life and work:Born at Wyberslegh Hall, High Lane, Cheshire in North West England, Isherwood spent his childhood in various towns where his father, a Lieutenant-Colonel in the British Army, was stationed...

    ) (1965)
  • The Collector
    The Collector
    The Collector is the title of a 1963 novel by John Fowles. It was made into a movie in 1965.- Plot summary :The novel is about a lonely young man, Frederick Clegg, who works as a clerk in a city hall, and collects butterflies in his spare time...

    (uncredited) (1965)
  • The Cincinnati Kid
    The Cincinnati Kid
    The Cincinnati Kid is a 1965 American drama film. It tells the story of Eric "The Kid" Stoner, a young Depression-era poker player, as he seeks to establish his reputation as the best...

    (with Ring Lardner Jr.
    Ring Lardner Jr.
    Ringgold Wilmer "Ring" Lardner, Jr. was an American journalist and screenwriter blacklisted by the Hollywood movie studios during the Red Scare of the late 1940s and 1950s.-Early life:...

    ) (1966)
  • Casino Royale
    Casino Royale (1967 film)
    Casino Royale is a 1967 comedy spy film originally produced by Columbia Pictures starring an ensemble cast of directors and actors. It is set as a satire of the James Bond film series and the spy genre, and is loosely based on Ian Fleming's first James Bond novel.The film stars David Niven as the...

    (1967) (uncredited)
  • Barbarella
    Barbarella (film)
    Barbarella is a 1968 Franco-Italian science fiction film based on Jean-Claude Forrest's French Barbarella comics. The film was directed by Roger Vadim and stars Jane Fonda, who was Vadim's wife at the time.-Plot:...

    (with Roger Vadim
    Roger Vadim
    Roger Vadim was a French screenwriter, director, and producer as well as a journalist, author and actor, who launched Brigitte Bardot's career in the film And God Created Woman.-Early life:...

    , Claude Brule, Vittorio Bonicelli, Clement Biddle Wood, Brian Degas
    Brian Degas
    Brian Degas is a screenwriter and producer. He has worked in both film and television.He is the Father of the actor Rupert Degas.He created the popular Colditz television series with Gerard Glaister....

     and Tudor Gates
    Tudor Gates
    Tudor Gates was an English screenwriter and trade unionist.-Biography:Gates was involved in stage management by the early 1950s and began scriptwriting in his spare time. After The Guv'nor was broadcast on television in 1956, he took to writing full time...

    ) (1968)
  • Easy Rider
    Easy Rider
    Easy Rider is a 1969 American road movie written by Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper, and Terry Southern, produced by Fonda and directed by Hopper. It tells the story of two bikers who travel through the American Southwest and South with the aim of achieving freedom...

    (with Peter Fonda
    Peter Fonda
    Peter Henry Fonda is an American actor. He is the son of Henry Fonda, brother of Jane Fonda, and father of Bridget and Justin Fonda...

     and Dennis Hopper
    Dennis Hopper
    Dennis Lee Hopper was an American actor, filmmaker and artist. As a young man, Hopper became interested in acting and eventually became a student of the Actors' Studio. He made his first television appearance in 1954 and appeared in two films featuring James Dean, Rebel Without a Cause and Giant...

    ) (1969) (Academy Award nomination)
  • The End of the Road
    The End of the Road (1970 film)
    End of the Road is a 1970 film directed by Aram Avakian. It stars Stacy Keach and Harris Yulin. It was rated X for an abortion scene. It won an award at the 1970 Locarno International Film Festival. A nine-page Life Magazine article was published on Aram Avakian and End of the Road on November 7,...

    (with Dennis McGuire
    Dennis McGuire
    Dennis McGuire is an Australian sprint canoer who competed in the mid 1960s. He finished ninth in the K-4 1000 m event at the 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.-References:*...

     and Aram Avakian
    Aram Avakian
    Aram A. Avakian was an American film editor and director.Directed ground-breaking indie film End of the Road- Life and work :...

    ) (1969)
  • The Magic Christian
    The Magic Christian (film)
    The Magic Christian is a 1969 British comedy film directed by Joseph McGrath and starring Peter Sellers and Ringo Starr, with noteworthy appearances by John Cleese, Raquel Welch, Christopher Lee, Richard Attenborough and Roman Polanski. It was loosely adapted from the 1959 comic novel of the same...

    (with Joseph McGrath
    Joseph McGrath (film director)
    Joseph 'Apocalypse' McGrath , sometimes referred to as "'Apocalypse'" Joe McGrath or Croisette Meubles, is a Scottish film director and screenwriter best remembered for his two films, Casino Royale and The Magic Christian . McGrath frequently collaborated with Spike Milligan and Peter Sellers...

    ) (1969)
  • The Telephone
    The Telephone (film)
    The Telephone is a 1988 independent film comedy starring Whoopi Goldberg as an out-of-work actress who starts doing some prank phone calls which created a chain of events. Actor Rip Torn makes his directorial debut with this film, with Elliott Gould and John Heard in supporting roles...

    (with Harry Nilsson
    Harry Nilsson
    Harry Edward Nilsson III was an American singer-songwriter who achieved the peak of his commercial success in the early 1970s. On all but his earliest recordings he is credited as Nilsson...

    ) (1988)

Awards and nominations

  • 1963 O. Henry Award
    O. Henry Award
    The O. Henry Award is the only yearly award given to short stories of exceptional merit. The award is named after the American master of the form, O. Henry....

    ; "The Road Out of Axotle", published in Esquire
    Esquire (magazine)
    Esquire is a men's magazine, published in the U.S. by the Hearst Corporation. Founded in 1932, it flourished during the Great Depression under the guidance of founder and editor Arnold Gingrich.-History:...

    , August, 1962
  • 1964 Writers Guild of America
    Writers Guild of America
    The Writers Guild of America is a generic term referring to the joint efforts of two different US labor unions:* The Writers Guild of America, East , representing TV and film writers East of the Mississippi....

    ; Screenwriter's Award for Best Written American Comedy of 1964, for Dr. Strangelove
  • 1964 Academy Award Nomination for Best Writing (Adaptation) for Dr. Strangelove
  • 1969 Academy Award Nomination for Best Original Screenplay; Easy Rider
    Easy Rider
    Easy Rider is a 1969 American road movie written by Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper, and Terry Southern, produced by Fonda and directed by Hopper. It tells the story of two bikers who travel through the American Southwest and South with the aim of achieving freedom...

    (with Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper)
  • 1975 The Paris Review; Funniest Story of the Year; "Heavy Put-Away, or, A Hustle Not Devoid of a Certain Grossness, Granted"
  • 1994 Gotham Award; Writer Award

External links