3 December 2010 4:05 PM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

The Hairspray and Pink Flamingos director is no stranger to irony. But would you buy a book of Role Models from the Pope of Bad Taste?

What is the ultimate John Waters anecdote? A master of irony, a man renowned for his outrageous, scandalous wit, most conversations with the film-maker, artist and raconteur turn up stories of dark bars in Baltimore, cult criminals and obscure dangerous movie stars. My favourite story, though, concerns a chicken.

The animal featured in Waters's 1972 classic, Pink Flamingos. Branded by Variety as "surely the most vile, stupid, repulsive film ever made", it's remembered by most for the scene in which Divine eats dog faeces. But that was not even the film's most controversial shot. No, there was also a sex scene in which a chicken is both molested and killed on camera. Let Waters take up the story: "The son is fucking Cookie. The chicken's in the middle. »

- Jim Shelley

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