Walter Mencken 9:23 a.m., Oct. 10
- Community Blog
- Postcards From the Purple Buddha
Happenings in the Hollywood Hills; or, Who Needs Escondido?
I received an announcement today from Eric Sherman, a director, consultant, author, and teacher at the Art Center College of Design and the California Institute of the Arts. He is holding a master class on screenwriting in a private home in the Hollywood Hills on April 28. What I wouldn't give to go to that!
Sherman is the son of Vincent Sherman, a director who worked with such legendary stars as Humphrey Bogart, Clark Gable and many other celebrities of his day. In a tell-all, Vincent recounts his three-year relationship with Joan Crawford, his inadvertent connection to the death of Bette Davis' second husband, and his romantic involvement with Rita Hayworth. I can't wait to read it.
This is the kind of stuff I love. I haven't been to the Hollywood Hills since the 1980s when I went to visit Phil Sharp, the writer for "All in the Family," unfortunately as he lay dying. My upstairs neighbor was once engaged to him and when she went out to get in her car to visit him that morning, her car was gone! She appeared at my door in tears, so I drove her up to say good-bye. I have to say that Phil was one of the warmest people I ever met and I truly don't know how Nancy could resist marrying him. Too weak to sit up, he lay in his recliner and cupped my hand in both of his as he greeted me.
When he heard that Nancy's car had been stolen, he offered his car to her. "I'm not going to be using it," he said sadly. She and I stumbled excitedly out to the garage and lifted the heavy door as if we were playing "Let's Make a Deal." It was a new BMW!
That is a fond memory and I'm sure I'd have many more if I could go to the screenwriting class next month. What a dream that would be!