1-50 of 74 names.

Winona Ryder

Winona Ryder was born Winona Laura Horowitz in Olmsted County, Minnesota, and was named after a nearby town, Winona, Minnesota. She is the daughter of Cynthia (Istas), an author and video producer, and Michael Horowitz, a publisher and bookseller. Her father's family is Russian Jewish and Romanian Jewish. She grew up in a ranch commune in Northern California which had no electricity. She is the goddaughter of Timothy Leary. Her parents were friends of Beat poet Allen Ginsberg and once edited a book called "Shaman Woman Mainline Lady", an anthology of writings on the drug experience in literature, which included one piece by Louisa May Alcott. Ryder would later play the lead role of Josephine March in the adaptation of this author's novel Little Women.

Ryder moved with her parents to Petaluma, California when she was ten and enrolled in acting classes at the American Conservatory Theater. At age 13, she had a video audition to the film Desert Bloom, but did not get the role. However, director David Seltzer spotted her and cast her in Lucas. When telephoned to ask how she would like to have her name appear on the credits, she suggested Ryder as her father's Mitch Ryder album was playing the background. Ryder was selected for the role of Mary Corleone in The Godfather: Part III, but had to drop out of the role after catching the flu from the strain of doing the films Welcome Home, Roxy Carmichael and Mermaids back to back. She said she did not want to let everyone down by doing a substandard performance. She later made The Age of Innocence, which was directed by Martin Scorsese, whom she believes to be "the best director in the world".

Fairuza Balk

"Fairuza!" ("Turquoise" in Farsi), her father exclaimed as he saw her blue eyes: Fairuza Alejandra Balk had just been born on May 21, 1974 in Point Reyes, California. Her father, Solomon Feldthouse, was a traveling musician originally from Idaho, and her mother, Cathryn Balk, was a belly dancer. Her parents split up soon after. Fairuza grew up just north of San Francisco, California, on a commune-type ranch. Her mother later found some work in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. It was there that Fairuza began her career at the age of nine on the ABC special The Best Christmas Pageant Ever. Two years later, she went to the United Kingdom where she attended the Royal Academy of Ballet, the Ramona Beauchamp Agency and the Bush Davies Performing Arts School. Fairuza worked for the Walt Disney Company for a while - at age 11, she was chosen from out of 1,200 girls to play the part of Dorothy, starring in Return to Oz. A year later, she starred as, prophetically enough, The Worst Witch, a harbinger of her breakout role in The Craft ten years later.

Fairuza and her mother remained in London until 1988, then headed to Paris where the 15-year-old starred in Valmont. The next year, they returned to Vancouver, where Fairuza enrolled in high school, but despite being a movie star, she was shy in class - she ended up doing correspondence courses. Back in Hollywood, Fairuza starred in a string of movies, including Gas, Food Lodging, for which she received an Independent Spirit Award for Best Actress. Following further television and film work, she achieved cult status with her starring role as a teenage witch in The Craft, her breakout film. The same year, she appeared in The Island of Dr. Moreau, in which she did some belly dancing and attracted the attention of Lancashire, England-born co-star David Thewlis. They did another movie together, American Perfekt.

Fairuza was also the love interest in the wildly popular The Waterboy and had a major role in American History X. With a half-dozen movies for 2000, Fairuza is much in demand. Her interests are writing poetry and stories, playing the guitar, singing (her main enjoyment) and dancing. She lives in Venice, California, and has an apartment in New York City.

Kristen Stewart

Though most famous for her role as Isabella "Bella" Swan in The Twilight Saga, Kristen Stewart has been a working actor since her early years in Los Angeles, California, where she was born. Her parents, John Stewart and Jules Stewart, both work in film and television. Her mother is Australian. The family includes three boys, her older brother Cameron Stewart and two adopted brothers Dana and Taylor.

After a talent scout caught her grade school performance in a Christmas play at the age of eight, she appeared on television in a few small roles. Her first significant role came when she was cast as Sam Jennings in The Safety of Objects. Soon after that, she starred alongside Jodie Foster in the hit drama, Panic Room and was nominated for a Young Artist Award.

Praised for her Panic Room performance, she went on to join the cast of Cold Creek Manor as the daughter of Dennis Quaid and Sharon Stone. Though the film did not do well at the box office, she received another nomination for a Young Artist Award. After appearing in a handful of movies and a Showtime movie called Speak, Stewart was cast in the role of a teenage singer living in a commune in Sean Penn's Into the Wild, a critically acclaimed biopic. A third Young Artist Award nomination resulted in a win for this role. She also appeared in Mary Stuart Masterson's The Cake Eaters that same year.

Just 17, Stewart took on the starring role in Twilight which was based on a series of the same name written by Stephenie Meyer, the novel already had a huge following and the film opened to fans anxious to see the vampire romance brought to life. Awarded the MTV Movie Award for Best Female Performance, Stewart's turn as Bella continued in the sequels The Twilight Saga: New Moon and The Twilight Saga: Eclipse. The final installments of the series start filming in late 2010.

Despite her stratospheric launch into stardom with the Twilight films, she stayed true to her roots by working on a number of indie projects, including Adventureland (filmed prior to the Twilight series) and Welcome to the Rileys. And she took on the daunting task of playing hard rocker Joan Jett in Floria Sigismondi's The Runaways alongside Dakota Fanning. Stewart received praise for her acting and musical performances and later won the 2010 BAFTA Rising Star Award and best actress at the Milan International Film Festival for Welcome to the Rileys.

Stewart starred in several other movies filmed between the Twilight Saga installments including the #1 summer box office hit, Snow White and the Huntsman, and the Cannes selection On the Road

A few of Stewart's following projects are: Sundance drama Camp X-Ray, Cannes selection Clouds of Sils Maria for which she won a César award, and the Lionsgate distributed action comedy, American Ultra, starring the Adventureland duo.

Stewart continues to live in Los Angeles, California.

Patricia Arquette

With her expressive blue eyes, soft, Southern-tinged voice and an acting range that can carry her from hysterically funny to terrifying in seconds, Patricia Arquette is one of the most underrated and talented actresses of her generation. Though she has been working for years, she's always stayed just under the radar of true stardom, despite a 1995 marriage to Nicolas Cage.

Patricia was born in Chicago, though the family soon moved to a commune near Arlington, Virginia. Her parents, Lewis Arquette, an actor, and Brenda Denaut (née Nowak), an acting teacher and therapist, had 4 other children: Rosanna Arquette, Richmond Arquette, Alexis Arquette, and David Arquette, all actors. Her paternal grandfather, Cliff Arquette, was also an entertainer. Patricia's mother was from an Ashkenazi Jewish family (from Poland and Russia), while Patricia's father had French-Canadian, Swiss-German, and English ancestry.

At 15, Patricia ran away from home to live with her sister Rosanna and, after initial insecurity, got her start in Pretty Smart. A year later, she gained attention for her starring role in A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors, considered by many to be the best film of the Nightmare series. In 1989, Patricia's son, Enzo (father is Paul Rossi), was born. Soon after, her career took off, and she has since appeared in such critically acclaimed movies as True Romance, Beyond Rangoon, Ethan Frome, Lost Highway and Flirting with Disaster. She won a CableACE award in 1991 for her portrayal of a deaf epileptic in Wildflower. In 1997, after her mother died of breast cancer, Patricia took the lead in the fight against the disease. She has run in the annual Race for the Cure and in 1999 was the Lee National Denim Day spokesperson.

Molly Parker

Molly Parker, the extremely talented and versatile Canadian actress is best known in the United States for playing the Western widow "Alma Garret" on the cable-TV series Deadwood. Raised on a commune, she described as "a hippie farm" in Pitt Meadows, B.C., Parker got the acting bug when she was 16 years old, after 13 years of ballet training. Parker's uncle was an actor, and his agent took her on as a client, enabling her to launch her career in small roles on Canadian television. She enrolled at Vancouver's Gastown Actors' Studio after she graduated from high school, and continued to act on TV in series and TV-movies while learning her craft at acting school.

Parker began attracting attention when she appeared as the daughter of a lesbian military officer in the TV-movie Serving in Silence: The Margarethe Cammermeyer Story. She earned a Gemini nomination (the Canadian TV industry's equivalent of the Emmy) for her performance in the TV-movie Paris or Somewhere. However, it was her debut in theatrical films that gave her her big breakthrough, playing a necrophiliac in Lynne Stopkewich's 1996 film Kissed. It was "Kissed" that set Molly's career into overdrive.

A friend got her an audition for the low-budget independent feature film, and she hit if off with the director, who not only cast her, but became her friend. As the character "Sandra Larson", a poetic soul obsessed with death who engages in sexual congress with a corpse, Parker created a sympathetic character in a difficult role. The film garnered her rave revues and she won a Genie Award, the Canadian cinema's Academy Award, for her performance. She parlayed the accolades into a sustained career on film and in TV.

On TV, Parker was part of the cast of CBC-TV's six-part sitcom Twitch City, playing the girlfriend of Don McKellar, which enabled her to showcase her comedic skills. Other memorable TV roles was the female rabbi on Home Box Office's series Six Feet Under and, of course, the regular role on HBO's Deadwood. She has appeared in many ambitious films, including Jeremy Podeswa's The Five Senses, István Szabó's Sunshine and Michael Winterbottom's Wonderland. She also re-teamed with director Lynne Stopkewich for Suspicious River.

Parker made waves with another provocative film with sex as its subject, director Wayne Wang's The Center of the World. In the movie, Parker played a San Francisco lap dancer who becomes a paid escort to a Silicon Valley nerd. For her performance, she was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award. In 2002, she was nominated twice as best supporting actress at the Genies for her roles in the British/Canadian co-production War Bride and Bruce Sweeney's Last Wedding, winning for her appearance in the latter film.

Parker's reputation as an outstanding actress is based on her assaying of strong, yet flawed, definitely complex women in character-leads and supporting parts in challenging films. Not only does she convey intelligence, but there is an unconscious elegance to her, a true inner beauty that radiates on-screen. She will be gracing the screen, both large and small, with her unique presence for many years to come.

Courtney Love

The daughter of Grateful Dead devotee and first manager Hank Harrison and psychotherapist Linda Caroll, Courtney Love was born Courtney Michelle Harrison in San Francisco, California in 1964. Love spent her early years living in hippie communes in Oregon and at schools in Europe and New Zealand, under the care of her mother and other family members.

By age 16, Love became legally emancipated and traveled throughout Europe, living off of a small trust fund left behind by her grandmother. Love eventually returned to Portland, Oregon, still pursuing music, and then moved around to various locations in the United States before making her break into the industry.

As a musician, she played in early incarnations of Babes In Toyland and Faith No More, as well as acting in bit parts for some Alex Cox films. In 1989, she started her own band, Hole, and in 1992 married Nirvana singer Kurt Cobain, giving birth to their daughter, Frances Bean Cobain, that same year. After Cobain's suicide in 1994, and the release of Hole's second album "Live Through This", Love continued to thrill her fans and enrage her detractors with her on- and off-stage antics.

By 1998, Hole had released their third studio album, "Celebrity Skin", and Love had attracted cinematic notoriety for her performance in The People vs. Larry Flynt, which not only garnered her a Golden Globe nomination, but recognition as a serious performer.

Early into the millennium, Hole broke up, and Love took some supporting roles in films such as Trapped, but her rocky past and propensity toward drug addiction eventually caught up with her, sending her through a whirlwind of numerous health and legal issues.

After unsuccessful stints in and out of drug rehabilitation centers, Love was ordered by the L.A. county court to three months in lock down rehab, which came to an end in 2006. Love soon after released a scrapbook-like diary recounting her life, titled "Dirty Blonde: The Diaries of Courtney Love", and continued writing music, testifying her sobriety to the press and public.

In 2009, after losing custody of daughter Frances Bean Cobain for unrelated reasons, Love re-formed Hole with an entirely new lineup, and soon after released the band's first album in ten years, titled "Nobody's Daughter".

Rick Ducommun

Once an overweight comic from Canada, Rick Ducommun slimmed down in the late 1980s and went on to tackle solid co-starring roles in feature films and TV, as well as headline several HBO and other pay-cable specials. Ducommun grew up on a farm, the son of an entrepreneur father with whom he did not get along. Running away from home at age 14, he hitchhiked around the northern U.S., often living in communes, until returning to Canada at age 17, this time to Vancouver. On a dare, Ducommun tried to do stand-up comedy at a Vancouver club. He was not only asked back, but bitten by the show business bug. He began playing clubs in Canada, hosted his own children's show, "ZigZag," and was put on TV by Alan Thicke, who was then hosting a talk show out of Vancouver. When Thicke made his deal to do Thicke of the Night, a late-night talk show from L.A., he brought Ducommun down to be announcer and a performer. When the show flopped, Ducommun began performing at L.A. clubs and acting in sitcoms. He was one of the zany cops on The Last Precinct -- a short-lived NBC show, and Mahler on Max Headroom. Ducommun also played small parts in films, beginning with No Small Affair but found himself limited by a frame carrying 426 lb. He slimmed down more than 200 lb., and won the role of Art Weingartner, the dumb lug nosy neighbor to Tom Hanks in The 'Burbs. Despite good reaction to his work, the film was not a success, and Ducommun found himself mixing live performances in with his occasional film work, including an appearance in Blank Check. HBO did a special with Ducommun in 1989 called Rick Ducommun: Piece of Mind, which was well received, as was the follow-up, "Hit and Run" in 1992. Ducommun frequently hosted pay and cable programs featuring stand-up comedy and was an regular performer on the Comedy Channel, later renamed, Comedy Central.

Joanna Moore

Southern-bred beauty Joanna Moore certainly had a lot of things going for her when her career started off in the 50s. Armed with an entrancingly smoky voice that complemented her stunning, creamy blond beauty, Joanna played wily females in such films as Walk on the Wild Side and Son of Flubber, but she would be best remembered, however, as the benevolent girlfriend of "Sheriff Andy Taylor" in the third season of The Andy Griffith Show. At the peak of her career, Joanna married her "Prince Charming", actor Ryan O'Neal, on April 3, 1963. O'Neal, of course, would make a huge impact as "Rodney Harrington" the following year on the nighttime soap, Peyton Place. The good-looking couple had two children who also became actors: Tatum O'Neal (later Oscar-winner) and Griffin O'Neal. The marriage, however, was tempestuous, to say the least, and they divorced acrimoniously in February, 1967. Things started to slide after that for Joanna: She lost custody of her children in 1970 due to severe drug and alcohol addiction, with both her children battling similar problems as adults. There was talk that Joanna was living in self-styled communes and had completely isolated herself from any Hollywood contact. She was not heard of for decades until discovered in the Palm Springs area involving herself in small theater projects. Joanna died in 1997 of lung cancer with her daughter, Tatum, at her side.

Tara Lynne Barr

From a dry, intelligent teenager with a dark sense of humor navigating the waters of her parents divorce, to portraying one of the most notable former members of Charles Manson's commune, to a 16-year-old girl who embarks on a nation-wide killing spree of the country's dumbest, most irritating celebrities, Tara Lynne Barr has quickly become known in the entertainment industry for the complex characters she has brought to life in film and on television.

Tara is currently starring in Hulu and Lionsgate Television's original comedy series "Casual." Executive produced by Jason Reitman [Up in the Air, Juno], Tara is a scene stealer as Laura, the sarcastic yet wise and witty daughter of Valerie [Michaela Watkins]. The series follows a bachelor brother [Tommy Dewey] and his newly divorced sister [Watkins] as they navigate the crazy world of dating while living together and raising a teenager [Barr]. "Casual" premiered in October 2015 to critical acclaim, and was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Television Series - Comedy or Musical. In addition to working with Hulu, Tara was also seen throughout the summer of 2015 on NBC's 1960's thriller-drama series "Aquarius". She appeared opposite Golden Globe winner David Duchovny, who stars as a police sergeant in Los Angeles who embarks on an undercover investigation of a cult leader: Charles Manson. Tara portrayed the character of Katie on the show, who was based on real life Manson follower Patricia Krenwinkel.

Tara made her feature film debut in the award-winning independent film "God Bless America" [Darko Entertainment, Magnet Releasing] which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2011. Written and directed by Bobcat Goldthwait, Tara commanded the screen as Roxy, a 16-year old girl who teams up with terminally ill Frank [played by Joel Murray], and heads out on a mission to rid society of its most repellent citizens. The film, which has since gone on to become a cult hit, was nominated for an Audience Award at the 2012 SXSW Film Festival, and Tara earned a Young Artist Award nomination as Best Leading Young Actress in a Feature Film for her work in the project. In 2014, Tara once again made waves in the indie scene [in another 1960's period piece] starring as Dawn in the short film "Dawn", Rose McGowan's directorial debut. The dark and dramatic film premiered at Sundance, and was nominated for the Short Film Grand Jury Prize.

Born and raised in Orange County, California, Tara got her start in theater at the age of seven. She was instantly drawn to the stage, and loved bringing diverse characters to life. Although acting quickly became her passion, she also desired a sense of normalcy and realized early on that driving back and forth from the OC to Los Angeles took up a ton of time from school. She dabbled in the Disney and Nickelodeon world growing up and appeared on a handful of series, however at the end of the day, she wanted to wait to seriously pursue a career in acting until after graduating from high school. Shortly before graduation, Tara booked "God Bless America", and she has been working ever since.

While working in television and film are two of Tara's greatest passions, she also has a love of music. She sings, is a self-taught guitar player, and has hopes to learn how to play the bass in the near future. Tara is a fan of the arts, she loves plays, musicals, supporting local theater, and reading crime mystery novels. She also is a big fan of horror films, from classic to contemporary, she tries to see them all. Tara currently lives in the Los Angeles area.

Gerrit Graham

Gerrit Graham was born on November 27, 1949 in New York City. He grew up in St. Louis, Missouri, Chicago, Illinois and Grosse Pointe, Michigan. Gerrit made his acting debut at age eight in a Detroit Art Institute stage production of "Winnie the Pooh." Graham was the president of the dramatic association as a high school student at Groton and general manager of the Columbia Players while studying at Columbia University. He began his cinematic career acting in movies for director Brian De Palma: he's excellent in his film debut as paranoid conspiracy nut Lloyd Clay in "Greetings!" and gave a hilarious performance as preening flamboyant rock star Beef in "Phantom of the Paradise." Graham's other memorable comic roles include no-talent aspiring country singer Perman Waters in Paul Bartel's "Cannonball!," hippie commune leader Magic Ray in "Bobbie Jo and the Outlaw," sleazy used car salesman Jeff in the uproarious "Used Cars," the snobby Bob Spinnaker in "Class Reunion," and the leering Rodzinski in "The Creature Wasn't Nice." Moreover, Gerrit has demonstrated his considerable range and versatility in such occasional serious parts as computer nerd Walter Gabler in "Demon Seed," Susan Sarandon's abusive boyfriend Highpockets in "Pretty Baby," tough Vietnam veteran Ray Stark in "The Annihilators," and Alex Vincent's jerky foster father Phil Simpson in "Child's Play 2." Among the many TV shows Graham has done guest spots on are "Baretta," "Starsky and Hutch," "Laverne & Shirley," "The A-Team," "Fame," "St. Elsewhere," "Miami Vice," "Dallas," "The Wonder Years," "Seinfeld," "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine," "Babylon 5," "The Larry Sanders Show," "Star Trek: Voyager," "Law & Order," and "Third Watch." Gerrit had a recurring role on "The Critic." He wrote three episodes of the 80s "The Twilight Zone" revival and acted in the "Welcome to Winfield" episode of the same show. On stage Gerrit has performed improvisational comedy sketches with Chicago's Second City troupe and worked with improvisational director Paul Sills in Chicago as a member of Sills' Story Theatre ensemble. Graham has written several songs with Bob Weir (these include the lyrics for the Grateful Dead tune "Victim or the Crime"). Graham wrote additional dialogue and provided additional voices for the hit Disney animated picture "The Little Mermaid" and co-wrote the screenplay for the cartoon feature "The Prince and the Pauper." He's the father of sons Jack and Henry.

Luana Anders

Born Luana Margo Anderson on May 12, 1938, Luana Anders began her show-business career as a bike messenger at MGM along with fellow thespians Jack Nicholson, Sandra Knight and future film producers George Edwards and Fred Roos. She convinced Nicholson to join her in her improv acting class with legendary teacher and veteran character actor Jeff Corey; her other classmates included Sally Kellerman, Richard Chamberlain, director/producer Roger Corman and screenwriter Robert Towne. Luana began her acting career in her teens in such 1950s "B" movies as Reform School Girl (alongside her lifelong friend Sally Kellerman) and Life Begins at 17, in which she co-starred with actor (and future producer) Mark Damon. She also worked with Damon in Roger Corman's The Young Racers. The sound man on "The Young Racers" asked her if she wanted to star in his first directing effort. The sound man was Francis Ford Coppola and Anders played the conniving and duplicitous Louise Haloran in Coppola's debut feature, Dementia 13.

She played Vincent Price's sister Catherine Medina in Corman's Pit and the Pendulum. Anders acted opposite Charles Grodin and John Gabriel in Sex and the College Girl. Luana was in three pictures for director Curtis Harrington: ingénue Ellen Sands in Night Tide, a cameo as a party guest in Games and repressed librarian Louise in the perverse The Killing Kind. Anders achieved cult status as groovy hippie commune dweller Lisa in Easy Rider. Robert Altman frequently credited Luana with getting his career started; she has a small role as a streetwalker Sandy Dennis picks up in Altman's That Cold Day in the Park. Friend Jack Nicholson made a point of seeing and commenting on the movie during the Cannes film festival where "Easy Rider" won the Palme D'or; the subsequent publicity gave Altman the notoriety to launch his career. She frequently acted in films with real-life good friend Nicholson; she was especially memorable as a Buddhist chanting party girl in The Last Detail. Luana was terrorized by a deranged Mickey Rooney on an abandoned studio backlot in the unreleased gonzo oddity The Manipulator and starred in Robert Downey Sr.'s Greaser's Palace. Anders appeared in Shampoo, a film that's reportedly based on her romance with hairdresser Richard Alcala; the picture was written by her friend and fellow Corey classmate Robert Towne.

She had a recurring part on the daytime soap opera Santa Barbara. Among the TV shows Luana did guest spots on are Hunter, Little House on the Prairie, Mannix, Bonanza, Ironside, Dragnet 1967, Hawaii Five-O, The Andy Griffith Show, One Step Beyond, The Outer Limits, Ben Casey and The Rifleman. Anders co-wrote the script for the comedy Limit Up and was uncredited in scripting the action/adventure romp Fire on the Amazon, which was Sandra Bullock's debut film for Roger Corman. She appeared in a number of movies with collaborator Richard Martini, including You Can't Hurry Love, about which "Variety" declared, "It's about time we see the great Luana Anders back on the screen". She was a member of the improvisational comedy stage group The Committee. A lifelong Buddhist and supporter of the American chapter of Soka Gakkai International, Luana Anders died on July 21, 1996.

Luke Askew

Tall and rangy, usually sporting long mangy hair, and frequently projecting a strong and intense on-screen presence, character actor Luke Askew made a potent and lasting impression playing a substantial volume of mean and fearsome villains in both motion pictures and television shows alike in a career that spanned over forty years. Askew was born on March 26, 1932 in Macon, Georgia. He was of mixed Yorksire and Scandinavian descent and first developed an interest in acting towards the end of high school. Luke attended the University of Georgia (where he initially planned on getting a B.A. in Business Administration), Mercer University, and the Walter F. Joy School of Law. Luke served in the U.S. Air Force in strategic air command intelligence during his college years. Following college Askew worked as a radio deejay and television announcer prior to beginning his acting career in Off-Broadway stage productions in New York City (Askew lived in Greenwich Village in the early 1960s and kept himself afloat working as a furniture mover). Luke moved to Los Angeles in 1966 and made his film debut in 1967 in "Harry Sundown." Best known as the stranger on the highway in the hippie counterculture cult classic "Easy Rider," Askew's other memorable roles include the redoubtable Boss Paul in "Cool Hand Luke," peaceful hippie commune leader Jonathan Tremaine in "Angel Unchained;" very scary and hateful as brutal low-life thug Automatic Slim in the grim revenge thriller "Rolling Thunder," sleazy coroner Dexter Ward in "The Beast Within," and no-nonsense Irish gypsy crime lord Boss Jack Costello in "Traveller." Moreover, Luke appeared in a sizable number of Westerns made throughout the 1960s and 1970s: He had a rare lead role in the spaghetti Western "Night of the Serpent" and gave an especially fine performance as tough and stoic veteran cowpoke Luke in the gritty gem "The Culpepper Cattle Co." Among the many TV series Askew popped up in throughout the years are "The High Chaparral," "Mission: Impossible," "Cannon," "The Six Million Dollar Man," "Fantasy Island," "T.J. Hooker," "The Fall Guy," "Airwolf," "Murder, She Wrote," "Walker, Texas Ranger," "Everwood," and "Cold Case." Luke had an excellent recurring part as creepy and dangerous polygamist Hollis Greene on the acclaimed cable TV program "Big Love." Askew died at age 80 at his home in Portland, Oregon on March 29, 2012; he's survived by his wife and his son Christopher, who's a well regarded painter and tattoo artist.

Daria Halprin

Dropped out of University of California, where she studied Anthropology, to make her acting debut in Zabriskie Point. Following filming, she lived in the Mel Lyman-led Boston commune with her Zabriskie Point co-star Mark Frechette who, after robbing a bank, died in prison. In May 1972, she married Dennis Hopper.

Halprin studied with Fritz Perls, the creator of Gestalt Therapy, and she has a Master's in Psychology. She is co-founder (with her mother, Anna Halprin, a pioneering dance therapist/choreographer) and director of The Tamalpa Institute. Her mother was referred to as "the Martha Graham of the West". Her father, Lawrence Halprin, was a prominent landscape architect who hired former Department of the Interior Secretary Stewart L. Udall into his firm.

James Strawbridge

James Strawbridge is a celebrity chef and a leading authority on sustainable living. He is well-known as part of the Hungry Sailors duo (along with his father, Dick), and for appearing in BBC2's It's Not Easy Being Green, which had three series. He also co-presented UKTV History's The Reinventors, also with his father.

He qualified from York University with a first class honours degree in modern history. From a very early age James has cared about the planet, but a gap year in Nepal, conducting environmental projects with the locals, made him even more convinced that sustainable living had to be the future.

In 2007, he also worked on filming the charity education programme WasteBusters, which aimed to encourage children to think more about the environmental issues surrounding waste.

His latest show is ITV1's The Hungry Sailors, which sees him and his father sampling food around the coasts of the UK.

Along with other members of his family, including his father Dick and his mother Brigit, James runs the Newhouse Farm commune, the website of which is home to all three of BBC television's 'It's Not Easy Being Green' series. If you have a look around the website you'll find details of the family's eco projects, such as their solar panels, wind turbines, ram pump, compost loo, geodesic dome and permaculture plot, many of which were covered on the BBC2 series.

They also run courses at Newhouse Farm to share their experiences, demonstrate all the systems they have invested in, and offer eco advice. The courses cover many aspects of sustainable living and green technology, such as how to make your own biodiesel, Eco-Engineering, harness wind power, make the most of water power, and an introduction to sustainable living. All the courses are led by Dick Strawbridge with assistance James and the Newhouse Farm team.

As well as his TV appearances, James has worked as a sustainability manager in Fiji and as an eco-consultant for The Lost Gardens of Heligan. He also runs his own catering company, James Cooks. He is represented in London, England by Useful Talent.

Mark Frechette

Frechette died in prison after robbing a bank. His acting debut was in Michelangelo Antonioni's controversial exploration of turbulent 1970 America, Zabriskie Point. As Antonioni toured the U.S., experiencing cultural clash firsthand and shooting background footage, a talent scout saw Frechette, a carpenter, scream and throw a flowerpot at a woman on a Boston street. Antonioni immediately cast Frechette, a non-actor, in the movie's lead role: a college student, wrongfully hunted for the murder of a policeman during a campus uprising.

Throughout the filming, Mark Frechette and the director disagreed bitterly about the script, while Frechette had an affair with co-star Daria Halprin. After the film, she joined Frechette in Mel Lyman's Boston commune, which supposedly had previously turned Frechette away, but accepted him after he was cast in Zabriskie Point. Lyman had been a member of the Jim Kweskin Jug Band. Frechette donated $60,000 from films to the commune. Halprin soon left the Fort Hill commune.

Frechette quickly starred in 2 Italian movies, then was arrested for a 1973 bank robbery a few blocks from the commune, in which "Hercules" Thien, 1 of his 2 fellow cult member accomplices, was killed. Frechette's own gun had no bullets. After his arrest, Frechette explained the bank robbery: "It would be like a direct attack on everything that is choking this country to death". In 1975, while serving a 6-15 year prison sentence, a 150 pound weight Frechette was lifting fell on his throat, killing him.

Frechette, a high school dropout of Quebecois ancestry, from Fairfield, Connecticut, was twice hospitalized for emotional problems, and several times arrested, prior to Zabriskie Point.

Mac McDonald

Mac McDonald (born Terence McDonald in Long Island, New York, USA) is an American actor. He is best known for playing Captain Hollister on the BBC TV series Red Dwarf and frequently plays American characters in other British TV shows. He has also had many movie roles in films such as Aliens, Batman and The Fifth Element, all of which were filmed in England. After leaving school Mac pursued a stage career, with a strong personal preference for comedy and music. In 1968 he was in Shreveport, Louisiana as the local TV station's Bozo the Clown. Later he moved to San Francisco, working for some time as a cycle courier and joining the AAA Acting Company.

He developed an interest in the teachings of George Gurdjieff but in 1974 turned down an invitation to attend the movement's training school, deciding instead to travel in Europe, armed only with a fool's hat and a melodica. In Amsterdam he met a fellow American and accepted an invitation to stay in a commune in Kentish Town, North London. There he stayed for some years, taking over a leatherworking business from another, departing American resident and running a leather goods stall in the newly-opened Camden Lock Market.

There he hit upon a novel idea for busking, the "Human Jukebox", in which he waited in a large silver box until, when prompted by the insertion of a coin and the selection of a song, he opened a window and delivered his (unaccompanied) rendering. This was quite a success since Mac's quite passable tenor was reinforced by a showbizzy, faux-sincere personality that was by turns endearing, ironical and impossibly corny. As the "Human Jukebox" he made his first UK TV appearance, standing in for Elton John's part with Kiki Dee in the hit duet Don't Go Breaking My Heart.

At about this time Mac joined another company, this time presenting children's shows in conjunction with the Inner London Education Authority until in 1982, after a couple of seasons, he and another member, Hilary, left to form a three-person musical comedy troupe, The Cheap Shots, with Mac's close friend Sakal providing the music. The threesome developed "The Chip Shop Show", a series of spoof musicals popular on the newly burgeoning London alternative comedy circuit, making many appearances at The Comedy Store (London) alongside Ronnie Golden, John Hegley and others, including several future Red Dwarf players.

This format led to further TV work and Mac acquired an agent, bringing appearances in TV commercials and other parts requiring an American. The Cheap Shots disbanded and Mac, still living in North London, now with his partner Eleanor, settled down to develop his film and TV career. After a few minor film roles his appearance in Red Dwarf raised his profile and brought more and better roles.

McDonald has two daughters, singers Naomi Jasmine and Jess McDonald.

Vijal Patel

After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania with two degrees - one in engineering, the other in business - Vijal asked himself a vexing question. "How can I most effectively disregard the past five years of my life?" At first, his inner voice urged him to move to California and join a radical left-wing avocado commune with a proclivity for sedition. That voice was quickly silenced in the middle of the night under mysterious circumstances and replaced by a more reasonable voice urging him to "join the spirits in the far desert weaving together laughter and tears from simple words." What the hell does that mean? Was this a sign from God or a glue-induced flashback? It wasn't until his twelfth hour into an A-Team marathon that Vijal realized what the voice was trying to say. "Become a screenwriter." So you see, the answer to his vexing question came as easily as turning on the TV. Only this time, he turned to TV.

Before long, Vijal moved to Los Angeles as the first voice urged him to do and entered the entertainment profession as the second voice urged him to do. But it wasn't all chips and dip for this brash young upstart. Nothing was handed to him except for some fake phone numbers from uninterested women and a couple speeding tickets from un-amused cops. Other than that, Vijal had to earn his keep. Over the next two years, he worked his way up from production assistant to writer's assistant and before you knew it, he was offered a bona fide staff writing position because a faithful producer saw talent in the boy. In the subsequent years, that boy became a man writing for such networks as ABC, NBC and is currently writing for 'Til Death starring Brad Garret which will be airing in Fall 2006 on FOX.

John Patrick Lowrie

John Patrick Lowrie was born in 1952 in Honolulu, Hawaii and raised in Boulder, Colorado. At 16 he left home to make his way as a singer/guitarist/flautist/trombonist in a rock 'n' roll band, sleeping in parks and communes and getting to know several hippies. Surviving the draft, he graduated with highest distinction from the Indiana University School of Music and for a few years managed to make a living as a composer and guitarist in his acoustic fusion duo The Kiethe Lowrie Duet, garnering critical acclaim and opening for people who were much more famous than he was. He then decided to become an actor because the pay was better and the work was steadier. To this day he remains the only person he knows of who has done this. He met Ellen McLain, his wife of twenty-four years, in Arnhem, Holland on a European tour of a Broadway show and started his acting career in Palermo, Italy telling jokes to an opera house full of Sicilians who didn't speak English. Success continues to dog his heels like an angry Pekinese.

John and his wife now reside in Seattle, where they divide their professional time between acting in live theater and voice acting for computer games and radio dramas.

Henry Lee Lucas

An unwanted child born to a destitute family in Blacksburg, Virginia, Henry Lee Lucas' mother, 41-year-old Viola, turned tricks in their dirt floor cabin in front of the family. She hated her new son from the time he was born and continually abused him. Her husband Anderson, who had lost his legs in a railroad accident, was also constantly subjected to Viola's violence, but Henry, being a child, got the worst of it. Anderson eventually committed suicide by sleeping outside in the snow when he could no longer bear it, Viola entertaining another trick in his home; he contracted pneumonia and shuffled off this mortal coil. Henry, thus, bore the full focus of Viola's wrath after his pappy's unseasonable demise.

When Henry entered school in 1943, Viola in her meanness deliberately dressed him as a girl, even going so far to coif his hair into sausage curls, then sent him off to the schoolhouse, all dolled up, albeit barefoot. Not only forced to face the antagonism of his boy schoolmates as he attended to his education in such unlikely duds, he also had to face Viola's wrath when a teacher, pitying the lad, bought young Lucas a pair of shoes. Viola beat her son for accepting charity. This charmless woman killed any animals that her son tried to keep as a pet, and denied him medical attention when he cut his eye with a knife, leading to its surgical removal.

Viola once beat Henry with a a piece of lumber that put him in a coma, off and on, for three days. Viola's live-in lover, familiarly known as "Uncle Bernie," eventually took the Lucas lad to the hospital. In the demerit column, Uncle Bernie introduced Lucas to the joys of bestiality, teaching the boy how to kill hapless and unhappy animals after they had been tortured and sexually abused.

In March 1951, the 15-year-old Henry Lee Lucas picked up a 17-year old girl near Lynchburg, Virginia, propositioned her, then strangled her when she resisted the advances of this loathsome Lothario. He buried the corpse in the woods near Harrisburg, Virginia. (Lucas confessed to the murder in 1983.) Three years later, he was sent to prison for six years, convicted of the crime of burglary. Lucas escaped from prison twice in 1957, but was caught each time.

On September 2, 1959, he was released from prison and moved in with his sister in Tecumseh, Michigan, but his now-elderly mother demanded that he return with her to Blacksburg. It was there, on the night of January 11, 1960, that an intoxicated Viola struck her likewise intoxicated son with a broom and was stabbed to death for her transgression against his person. After his arrest, Lucas confessed that he had sexually assaulted his mother's corpse, though he soon recanted, a pattern of behavior that was a harbinger of things to come.

Henry Lee Lucas was sentenced to 20-40 years in prison for the killing of Viola and was clapped in the hoosegow in March 1960. He was soon transferred to the state hospital for the criminally insane, where he remained for six years. Paroled on June 3, 1970, he moved in with his relatives in Tecumseh. However, he ran afoul of the law in December 1971, charged with molesting two teenage girls, a charge later reduced to simple kidnapping. Sent to the state penitentiary, he was paroled in August 1975, over his own objections. Employed by a Pennsylvania mushroom farm, he married his cousin's widow in December of that year. They moved to Maryland, but they broke up, his wife eventually divorcing him in the summer of 1977, claiming that he had molested her daughters by a previous marriage.

Cast out, Henry Lee Lucas became a drifter, roaming throughout the South, allegedly killing female hitch-hikers as he moseyed along Interstate 35 in the Lonestar state of Texas. Fatefully, the 40-year old, one-eyed bisexual met the 29-year-old homosexual drifter Ottis Toole in a Florida soup kitchen in late 1976.

They hit it off immediately, becoming lovers and boon traveling companions; whether they actually were serial killers together is still clouded in mystery, though it likely is true.

In 1978, Toole and Lucas moved in with Toole's mother and sister in Jacksonville. Lucas fell in love with Toole's 10-year old female cousin, Frieda "Becky" Powell, whom he eventually adopted and lived with as husband and wife. But that lay in the future. Toole and Lucas went to work for a local roofing company, but they often missed work as they frequently went back on the road, two men born to ramble, spreading their version of hell along the highways and by-ways of America.

In 1981, Toole's mother and sister died within a few months of each other, and Becky and Frank were placed in juvenile homes. Returning to Jacksonville, Lucas helped obtain their release, and Becky and her brother Frank were taken on the road by the Henry Lee and Uncle Ottis, where they were exposed to the depravity of their murderous traveling show. It was at this time that Becky, Ottis Toole's niece, became the common-law wife of Lucas, who was over 30 years her senior. When child welfare authorities launched a search for Becky and Frank in January 1982, Becky fled to California with Lucas. Her brother Frank eventually wound up in a psychiatric facility in 1983 after bearing witness to the the brutality of his uncle and "brother-in-law."

From California, Lucas and Becky made it to Texas, winding up in the All People's House of Prayer, a religious commune outside of Stoneburg, Texas. But Becky was homesick, and in August 1982, this odd couple, husband and wife, were on the road again, hitchhiking, returning to Florida. On the night of August 23rd, in Denton County, Texas, the unlikely pair of lovers had an argument, and Becky slapped Lucas. As he had done 22 years earlier, Henry Lee reacted with a knife. He stabbed his young common-law bride to death. He then dismembered her corpse before returning to Stoneburg,

Lucas' story about Becky's disappearance was that she had vamoosed with a passing truck driver. Three weeks later, Lucas turned up missing the day after the disappearance of a local, Kate "Granny" Rich, an octogenarian. Lucas' car was found abandoned in Needles, California, less than a week later, on September 21st, then Lucas showed up again in Stonesburg on October 18th, the day after Rich's home was destroyed by a mysterious fire. The police arrested Lucas on a fugitive warrant from Maryland, but he was soon released.

Eventually, Lucas was jailed after returning to Stoneburg on June 11, 1983, arrested as he was an ex-convict who possessed a handgun. Lucas was remorseful for his murder of Becky, and had returned to the field where he had scattered her body parts to commune with the soul of his beloved. On the night of June 15th, Lucas summoned the jailer and offered a confession to expiate his sins: "I've done some bad things," he began.

Henry Lee Lucas confessed to the murder of Granny Rich, commenting that "he had killed at least a hundred more." For a year and a half, Lucas confessed to multiple murders.

At first, Lucas estimated he had killed 75 to 100 people, then he boosted the body-count to between 150 and 360, eventually reaching the 500 to 600 range when he factored in killings by his friends. Lucas implicated his erstwhile pal Ottis Toole in many of the murders, furthermore claiming that he and Toole had committed many murders as a hit-squad directed by a Satanic cult, "The Hand of Death," that Toole had introduced him to. A cannibal, Toole sometimes ate the flesh of their victims, although Lucas didn't join him in his insalubrious repast.

Toole, who was serving time on a Florida arson charge, didn't mind being implicated in mass murder by his former lover. In fact, he offered confessions of his own. By October 1983, police were sure that Toole and Lucas had committed at least 69 killings, which they announced at a press conference. The number was increased to 81 at a January 1984 press conference, and by March 1985, 90 murders had been attributed to Lucas in 20 states, and he and Toole were credited with a further 108 killings. Police would eventually claim over 200 murders were solved due to Lucas' confessions, as Lucas was taken to various states and had his memory prodded about unsolved killings.

At his trial, Lucas took responsibility for over 600 murders. He even claimed to have supplied People's Temple stalwart Jim Jones with the cyanide to effect the Guyana massacre. Ottis Toole, now on Florida's Death Row for murder, corroborated much of Lucas' confession, including his claims to have committed hundreds of murders, singly and as a duo.

Henry Lee Lucas eventually recanted his confessions, claiming that he was only trying to improve his living conditions in jail. He eventually claimed he only killed one person, his mother. Because of significant doubt as to Lucas' guilt, his death sentences were commuted to life in prison by Governor George W. Bush; it was the sole death sentence ever vacated by the then-governor, and allowed Henry Lee Lucas to die a peaceful death in prison. There were too many contradictions in Lucas' confessions which may have led to the re-opening of cases, so he could not be executed.

Robert McRay

Born in Wisconsin, he was raised on hippie communes and Indian reservations of the pacific Northwest. His first experience before the camera was at age 5, on "Romper Room", where he also met Edgar Bergan and Charlie McCarthy. He became a professional ventriloquist by the age of 11 and was creating his own animated and short films in his spare time. His fascination with physical development began as a way to overcome acute shyness, which developed from abuse he suffered as a child. He arrived in Hollywood in 1983, taking assorted television roles, including winning the game show "The Dating Game". Known for his creative abilities, he became a producer for the Disney/Touchstone organization among several other production companies. His strategy to succeed as an actor was to learn all aspects of the industry first, beginning with employment as a production assistant and eventually becoming the lead casting director for a series on the Showtime network. He is a character actor, most widely known for the late 90s television series "Conan", where he played the fierce yet sensitive sidekick, Zzeben. He is a produced writer for both television and feature films, and a highly respected artist. His sculptures range from large scale designs that have become landmarks, to smaller, mechanical sculptures, which are coveted by private collectors and professional performers around the world. He left Hollywood in 2003, after the tragic death of his close friend, for a life off-grid in the rugged mountains of norther Idaho, returning to the Entertainment Industry in 2014. His charitable causes include support groups and organizations that help adult survivors of child abuse.

Siri Baruc

Siri Baruc was born in a Yoga Commune in Boston, MA. Her mother is a clairvoyant teacher and her father, 'Robert Baruc', is the president of Screen Media Films. Siri grew up in Vermont, acting in school plays, acting camp, and community theater. She began her film career while studying theater and communications at Clark University in Worcester, MA. She was accepted into the University of the Arts acting program and was set to transfer but opted to act with the Karate Kid, Ralph Macchio in Can't Be Heaven (1999) which filmed in LA. While in LA she studied at the Larry Moss Studio and The Joanne Baron/ D.W. Brown acting studio. While training and acting in films she also studied Alexander technique, voice, dialect and yoga. Siri has since acted in over 40 films, television episodes, plays and Webseries. Siri is also a published author, screenwriter and Certified Reiki Master Practitioner and teacher. She lives happily with her husband, 'Jake Thornton' in LA.

Gabriel Fauré

Gabriel-Urbian Faure was born May 12, 1845, in Pamires, Mid-Pyrenees, France. He was the youngest of 6 children born to Toussaint and Marie Faure. From the age of 9 he studied piano and organ with Camille Saint-Saëns at the Ecole Niedermeyer. Saint-Saene encouraged young Faure to play piano music by Franz Liszt. In 1865 Faure was awarded first prize for composition, for his 'Cantique de Jean Racine', opus 11. In 1870 he served in the army during the Franco-Prussian war, and during the Paris Commune he was a music teacher in Switzerland, where his school Ecole Niedermeyer was relocated. Back in Paris he became organist at Saint-Sulpice.

Faure became a regular at the salon of Camille Saint-Saëns and the salon of Pauline Garcia-Viardot. There he met many prominent Parisian intellectuals: writers Gustave Flaubert and Ivan Turgenev, composers Hector Berlioz and Georges Bizet. With those contacts Faure initiated the formation of the 'Societe Nationale Musique' around the figure of Camille Saint-Saëns. Faure also took over the position of organist at the Eglise de la Madeleine in 1877, when Saint-Saens retired. At that time Faure became engaged to Marianne Viardot, the daughter of Pauline Viardot, but the engagement was broken off by Marianne.

Faure was sincerely in love, but heartbroken and so depressed, that he could not stay in the same salon. He canceled all social obligations and left Paris for a long journey. He went to Weimar, where he met Franz Liszt and expressed his gratitude by playing his own compositions to Liszt. Then Faure traveled to Cologne to listen to the operas of Richard Wagner, whom he admired. Faure's impressions from 'Der Ring des Nibelungen' were strong, but not enough to influence his own compositions.

Back in Paris he renewed his activity at 'Societe Nationale Musique'. He married Marie Frement in 1883, and the couple had two sons. He had to support his family. The lack of any musical success kept him working as the organist at the Eglise de la Madeleine, and also teaching piano and harmony, which took up all his time. His own compositions were sold to his publisher at 50 francs per piece with thw copyright. At that time Faure composed the exquisitely delicate 'Requiem' (1888), his most important choral work. He could not find a venue to perform his large-scale compositions. That made him even more depressed.

After ten years of hardship, Faure finally got promoted to the government position of the Inspector of Music Conservatoires in the French provinces. In 1896 he became chief organist at the Eglise de la Madeleine. He also replaced Jules Massenet as professor of composition at the Conservatoire de Paris. His students there included Maurice Ravel, Nadia Boulanger, George Enescu, and Charles Koechlin, who later orchestrated Faure's popular suite 'Pelleas et Melisande'. In 1890s Faure wrote piano duet 'Dolly Suite' and a vocal piece 'La bonne chanson' for Emma Bardac, the wife of Claude Debussy.

From 1905 to 1920 Faure was the powerful director of the Conservatoire de Paris. He made some reforms and dismissed unnecessary stuff for the purpose of rational spending of the funding from the government. His song opera 'Penelope' (1913) is noteworthy. His works of the late years were affected by his hearing loss, which inevitably caused his retirement. He was the music critic at Le Figaro from 1903-1921. Faure died from pneumonia on November 4, 1924, and was laid to rest in the Cemetiere de Passy in Paris.

Richard van Weyden

Richard van Weyden was born in Heiligenwald/Saar in 1966. Due to his father's work (a collier and specialist for welding technology), he spent the first years of his childhood in Nancy, Hamburg, Berlin, Hong Kong and Cape Town until his school enrollment in Frankfurt am Main. He quit school went to Rome and worked for several month as a shoeshine boy in a shoe-store. Nevertheless, he spent most of his time in the cinema watching movies. Back in Germany he joined different independent actor ensembles, touring the Repuplic of Germany, Austria and Switzerland whilst working as a prop master, light-tone technician, scene painter. He went to Paris for a while and lived in an artist commune. In 1986 Michael Cacoyannis (Alexis Sorbas) discovered him in the actor's canteen at the Staedtischen Buehnen Frankfurt, instructed him and immediately gave him a part in his opera production of Iphigenia. This special experience led to the decision to become an actor and a time of education to many different places followed. Since then he works as an actor for cinema, TV and theatre and also lent his voice to commercials and to famous characters (Conan, Sherlock Holmes, Cars, Pirates of the Caribbean...) for computer-games in Germany. In his free time, he writes short story's, sketches unusable furniture, works as a sculptor and painter and improves upon his English, French and Italian language skills.

Amber Dawn Lee

Before Amber Dawn rose to fame she studied acting under the influence of Milton Katselas at the Beverly Hills Playhouse.

Amber supported her acting career through fashion modeling and has been featured in Triangles swimwear commercials, and various other billboards and magazines worldwide including Versace, Tom Ford, Karen Kell, and Gucci.

Amber Dawn Lee was featured in Creative Screenwriting magazine as a writer whose screenplay works are "raw and full of heart." Greg Brooker (Stuart Little writer) said "Amber Lee has an innate instinct to understand drama and she puts it on the page beautifully."

Two of her screenplays Mockstar and Children of the West were quarter finalists in the AAA screenwriting competition. Amber created her own production company Abovo Films in 2010.

After roles in short and feature indie films in Texas she realized her career could only happen if she moved to Los Angeles

At the encouragement of friends, she packed up her car in the middle of the night and drove straight to California. She checked into the Sportsmen's Lodge, and started acting classes at the world famous Beverly Hills Playhouse.

Amber Dawn Lee is a humanitarian and speaks on panels around the United States on issues of animal rights. She has saved several dogs from shelters, and found them homes.

She has been featured in several magazines as a model including the cover of Met Magazine, and Miami fashion shows for Versace. She appeared on Good Morning America with Dianne Sawyer.

In 2012 she filmed a documentary (The Rise and Fall of Zion) in Colorado City, Arizona, and Utah where the rapist Warren Jeffs leads a polygamist commune.

Michael Laren

Michael Laren was catapulted to success early on in his dramatic journey with a career-defining portrayal of Jack Frost. His performance in the parochial chestnut "The Christmas Song Sketch" from Sister Bea DeMille's 1967 St. Mary's Grade School Yuletide Extravaganza brought down the Catholitorium. Young Master Laren received quite favorable reviews from the Vatican (Pope Paul VI). Alas, his intervening years have been spent trying to recapture that youthful pinnacle of success and the aforementioned papal adulation. Thus for many a year, and through many a succession of papal heirs to St. Peter's throne (with nary a congratulatory note or opening night bouquet from any one of them, mind you), Michael has journeyed forward with steadfast determination, ever onward in search of his next great theatrical conquest. Whether under the lights of the Broadway stage (a nice supporting part with limited dancing, modest housing and per diem) or beneath the tinsel of Hollywood (a series regular role whose character, though mute, appears in every episode of a weekly one-hour program and whose presence is integral to the story lines), Michael Laren will trod the boards, continuing to have a profound dramatic impact on monasteries and nunneries the world over. Plus a few synagogues, (from his great-great-grandmothers side)...also a couple of ashrams...oh, and a vegan commune in Topanga Canyon.

Mellissa Lydia McBride

Mellissa Lydia McBride was born in Perth, Western Australia and has one younger sister. Her mother is Scottish/Australian and her father Australian, but he passed when she was 28. Mellissa grew up on the central coast of Australia and lived in a hippy commune called an Ashram with her mother until she was 12 years old. She then moved back to Perth, Western Australia where she remained until she was in her early 20's. In 2010 her son was born, William James McBride, and they both reside together in Los Angeles California. In her spare time she loves to cycle, swim and run and just completed her first Iron Man.

Fabrizio Federico

Fabrizio Federico was born in the UK in 1983 to a big Italian family, he is the oldest of 6 siblings. In 1989 he moved to Italy after escaping death at the age 5 in a house fire.

There he lived in the valley of Massa. Raised among the free-wheeling Campania people he was free to explore and adventure into the mountains and rivers of the area. It was during these years he watched Dennis Hopper's The Last Movie, which had a tremendous impression on him. Along with Kenneth Anger, Andy Warhol and Pasolini.

His father Antonio Federico found work in the USA and in 1996 and moved to Saugus, MA. He entered school having forgotten how to read & write English, and followed a difficult year of relearning English and adjusting to American culture.

His passion for music came from his large family, who all listened to different styles of music. He could walk through each room in the house and each room would feel like a different culture.

He started learning guitar and dived into the local music scene. Bands like the Slurred Murrays, Dow Jones and the Industrials, Mr. Epps' Happy Kats, Jumpsuit Jery, Roadkill Puppeteers, Rascal Kings, The Best of What's Left, Durge, Less Intake.

He joined The Ochmoneks and played bass in the band. Also he made music with the rap groups Animals Sounds, and the the NSC (New Suburban Crackers). Gigging around the Boston circuit of Allston & Cambridge.

It was here he met the local underground scene of Boston and the artists, intellectuals, and villains 'the melting pot of damned souls'. He spent years roaming from bed to bed, and from park bench to bridge. His passion for DJing and film became apparent during this time, after coming across a book on Cult Movies and the performance of Jack Nicholson in One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest.

Following immigration problems in the U.S he moved to the UK. His passion for cinema had not left him and he began work without any experience or budget on his feature film debut 'Black Biscuit' in 2009 which was completed in 2012..

Deciding to cast an array of dreamers, misfits, homeless people, prostitutes, handicapped, gigolos, and an ex ping pong champion.

Shot on mobile phones, and children's cameras he faced among other things police harassment, computer problems, and the casts miffed reaction's. The results were compelling and new. Creating the PINK8 film Manifesto, as an alternative to the film industries monopoly and rules.

To fund Black Biscuit and to get into his character, Federico became a nude life model. Black Biscuit's budget came to little over £500.

He spent 1 year filming and another year editing all the hours of footage shot across Europe. The editing process was done as an experiment. Edited under the sounds of exorcisms, blind folded, and under hypnosis. Completed in 2011 Federico set out on a DIY campaign to promote and distribute the film.

In 2013 The Milk Man became an abandoned vérité film project he was making.The movie focused on a milk man who spiked local families milk bottles with LSD on his morning route's. The project was abandoned after the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers (RABDF) who were notified about the film and threatened to sue over alleged defamation regarding the films subject.

Pregnant (2015) is his 2nd feature film and deals with the Youtube/Facebook generation, lost and addicted in the haze of social media technology addiction. The film was shot at the Sunseed commune in Spain. During the shooting he fell out of a tree and broke his foot.

Also during this period Jett Hollywood was born. Ziggy Stardusts illegitimate son. A filmmaker from Mars. He promised to created two films and then commit 'cinema suicide'. Both movies bring hope to the human race, Evolution Of The Earth Angel (2015) & Anarchy In The Uk (2016)

In 2016 he founded the Straight Jacket Guerrilla Film Festival, launching 30 international films across the world, all exploring todays Underground/Cult cinema makers.

Susan Atkins

Susan Atkins, a.k.a. Sadie Mae Glutz, is one of the more notorious members of the group of people that congregated around convicted mass-murder mastermind Charles Manson, a group tagged "The Family" by the mass media. Born Susan Denise Atkins on May 7, 1948 in San Gabriel, California, her mother died of cancer when she was 15. Tired of life with her alcoholic father, with whom she constantly quarreled, she quit high school and moved to San Francisco, then on the verge of a counter-cultural revolution that would rock America.

She supported herself working the phones for a company peddling magazine subscriptions. Living in a rented room, Atkins was lonely and depressed. Quitting the telemarketing job, she became a waitress at a local coffee shop, a fateful change of occupations for it was there she met two escaped convicts. Smitten, she went on the road with the two hoods, and the trio eventually were arrested in Oregon after committing a series of armed robberies. For her role in the crime spree, Atkins was incarcerated for 90 days and put on probation.

She returned to San Francisco after her stint in jail, and became a topless dancer. Topless dancing as a phenomenon broke out in a big way at the 1964 Republican Convention, which was held at San Francisco's Cow Palace. Many conventioneers and media personnel congregated at North Beach's Condor Cub (now a state landmark) to watch the pneumatic Carol Doda, the Nathan Bedford Forrest of topless dancers (the firstest with the mostest) perform. Doda's come on was a variation of Barry "In Your Heart You Know He's Right" Goldwater's slogan absolving his followers of guilt for following an unrepentant extremist: "In Your Heart You Know She's Ripe." Powered by the twin propulsion of her silicone-enhanced mammaries, Miss Doda became a massive pop culture phenomenon over 40 years ago, and San Francisco's flesh pots vaulted "Baghdad by the Bay" ahead of New York and New Orleans as the most sinful city in the U.S. (It is unlikely that the G.O.P. will ever hold its convention there again.) The young Atkins, on the hustle, was one of those who tried to cash in on the trend.

Before Charles Manson put California on the map as the Kingdom of the Cuckoos, there was Anton LaVey. A hustling ex-carny with a disdain for what he called "White Light" religion, he ripped off the philosophy of the Magus Aleister Crowley (dubbed "The Wickedest Man in the World" by the British press, whose occult philosophy also proved inspirational to a former sci-fi writer named L. Ron Hubbard), stripped it of its religious meaning, and relaunched it as a proto-"Me" generation philosophy condoning licentious sex and guiltless self-fulfillment. To his credit, the founder of the Church of Satan never really misrepresented who he was, though many willingly misinterpreted him. Atkins came into contact with LaVey in San Francisco after being released from the hoosegow, and danced in a show he organized called the Witches' Sabbath as a blood-swilling vampire. It was a precursor of things to come for the rootless girl.

She also resorted to dope-peddling to make ends meet. Atkins wound up living in a commune, where she met Manson, who had recently been sent to the San Francisco Bay Area after getting out of prison in 1967. (A juvenile delinquent who graduated to a life of rime when he was all of 13 years old, Manson had been released on parole in in 1958 after being incarcerated in federal prison for stealing mail and forging a signature on a Treasury check. He began pimping in Los Angeles, and in June 1960, was arrested for violating the federal Mann Act. The procuring charges were dropped, but he was remanded back to the federal lock-up to serve out the remainder of his original 10-year sentence for violating parole. Prison records from the early '60s detail Manson's main interests as including Scientology, drama, and particularly music.

The 33-year old Manson had spent half of his life behind bars. He infatuated Atkins, as he had many young woman from broken homes searching for a father figure. Atkins became intrigued by Manson, who was playing guitar and singing his songs in the living room of the communal house. She was captivated by his music, and began traveling with him and his female followers in a school bus painted black. She soon became a central member of the group that coalesced around the ex-con. Renamed Sadie Mae Glutz by her new guru (for a fake I.D.), she eventually -- as part of the group that roved with Manson -- wound up living at the Spahn Movie Ranch in the San Fernando Valley, where Manson moved with his clan after splitting from Beach Boy Dennis Wilson's place.

Atkins was one of the more fanatical believers in Manson, who had written some 80 to 90 songs while in prison and hoped to make it as a singer-songwriter. Wilson was intrigued by Manson's music (one of Charlie's songs made it onto a Beach Boys single B-side and eventually onto an album), giving the diminutive (his driver's license listed him as 5'7" though his later nemesis, assistant D.A. Vincent Bugliosi, wrote that he was but 5'2") ex-con hope that he might make it in the music industry. Some claim that Wilson mostly was interested in Manson due to the free sex he got from Manson's girls, but given the nature of the band he belonged to -- one of the country's most successful -- it seems Wilson would have had his choice of groupies. It must have been the music of this Pied Piper of lost "children."

The link between Wilson and Manson had been made in the spring of 1968 when the Beach Boy picked up a hitch-hiking Ella Jo Bailey (known as "Yellerstone" by the Manson clan, which she hooked up with in 1967) and Patricia Krenwinkel, later to be convicted of first-degree murder. Wilson picked up the hitch-hiking duo another time later that spring ad took them to his house on Sunset Blvd., where they visited for a couple of hours, chatting mostly about their good friend (and guru) Charles Manson. Wilson met the man face-to-face when, coming home from a recording session at 3:00 AM, he found Manson and multiple members of his clan in his house. Wilson and Manson hit it off, and Charlie and his clan members stayed with he Beach Boy at his Sunset Blvd. pad for approximately six months. It was during this stay that Manson met Charles Watson, an All-American-looking native of the Lone Star state who went by the moniker "Tex." Wilson, before having a falling out with Manson (who supposedly had appalled the Beach Boy with a display of cruelty to one of his own gang), tried to interest music producer Terry Melcher in Manson, but Melcher passed on Manson. (Melcher later claimed that he wouldn't deal with Manson after hearing he had shot a man.) Manson, accompanying Wilson, had visited Melcher's estate at 10050 Cielo Drive in L.A.'s Benedict Canyon, and had visited it at least one other time on his own, where he had been rudely rebuffed. The estate would later be rented by director Roman Polanski and his wife, the beautiful, gentle, on-the-cusp of stardom movie actress Sharon Tate.

As a member of the Manson clan, Atkins (known as Sadie) would often come into conflict with Charlie, due to her constant demand for attention. More than once, she was blamed for spreading a dose of the clap among clan members, and reportedly, she was once banished from the fold. Atkins and some other clan members lived in the idyllic artists community of Mendocino in northern California for a while, but they were busted after distributing LSD to local kid. The Manson-affiliated group was dubbed "The Witches of Mendocino" when they went on trial.

In October of 1968, Susan Atkins gave birth to a boy either she or Manson (who was not the father) she tagged with the strange name "Zezozecee Zadfrack." She took refuge after the birth at the a religious retreat called Fountain Of The World. In less than It was believed that she more than once a year, Zezozecee's mother would play a part in one of the most infamous murder sprees in American criminal history.

The first murder in which Susan Atkins had a hand in was that of music teacher Gary Hinman, whom Spahn Ranch habitué Bobby Beausoleil, a talented young musician, had lived with before throwing in his lot with the Manson clan. Hinman moonlighted as a drug manufacturer, and as the story goes, in mid-1969, Hinman had whipped up a batch of LSD that Beausoleil -- who had appeared in 'Kenneth Anger' 's underground film "Lucifer Rising," for which he had composed the music -- sold to members of a motorcycle gang that frequented the Spahn Ranch for $1,000. The bikers claimed the LSD was of poor quality and wanted their jack back. In July 1969, Atkins, Mary Brunner, and Beausoleil, allegedly accompanied by Manson, went to Hinman's home. Explaining their plight with the bikers, Hinman refused to refund the cash, claiming the LSD he had sold them was potent. Manson then allegedly sliced off Hinman's ear with a sword before exiting the house. The remaining crew then reportedly held Hinman hostage for three days. Hinman refused to come up with the cash, and on the third day, either Atkins or Beausoleil stabbed him. In turn, he was suffocated by all three of his captors. Atkins provided a theatrical flourish before taking her leave, writing "Political Piggy" in Hinman's blood on the wall.

That three people would hold one man hostage at gun-point for three days over $1,000 that he claims he did not have before murdering him could be a true story. Another story recounted at the time of the Manson-Atkins trial was that the Hinman killing had been the result of a busted drug deal. Allegedly, Manson had given Tex Watson -- who was a flake, rather than being the "right-hand" man of the Manson "Family" that Bugliosi claimed -- $2,000 to buy some drugs from Bernard Crowe, an African American dealer tagged "Lotsa Poppa," so called as he was very big and fat. Watson had allegedly dealt with Lotsa Poppa before, so there was little suspicion when he went into the bathroom with the drugs and the cash, supposedly to relieve himself. What Tex actually did was defenestrate Lotsa Poppa's place with the drugs and Manson's cash, and then failed to inform Charlie his peccadillo.

Lotsa Poppa put the word out on the street that he was going to have both Watson and Manson killed, as he believed Manson was behind the rip-off. When Manson heard the news, as the alternative story goes, he panicked. What Manson didn't know was that Lotsa Poppa was just a low-level functionary and a blow-hard, and was just sounding off, having never resorted to violence before. Drugs fuel paranoia, and Manson believed Lotsa Poppa was connected with the Black Panthers, who allegedly controlled a good deal of the L.A. drug trade, and that his life was in jeopardy. What Charlie wanted to do was flee the Spahn Ranch and the Los Angeles area for Death Valley, but he needed cash.

Manson attempted a sit down to smooth things out with Lotsa Poppa in Hollywood, at an apartment one of Tex Watson's doxies lived in across from the Magic Castle. Apparently, Lotsa Poppa's bluff blew Charie's mind right out of the box and he drew a .22 caliber Buntline Special single-action revolver and shot the fat man in the chest, then took off. Manson believed he had killed Lotsa Poppa, whose lotsa fat and the small caliber of the bullet saved his life. Drug dealers are not ones to go to the police, and Lotsa Poppa really was't connected, so he just let things chill as he recovered. (Bugliosi used the incident during the trial to show that Charlie was capable of murder.)

Manson did not know this. He did know he needed to get out of the Spahn Ranch, where he was known, and fast. The clan had been supplementing their income stealing cars and stealing, and their position was increasingly precarious. Drugs were being dealt at the Spahn Ranch, outlaw bikers were around, and it seemed to Manson that he would soon be slammed back in stir. He needed money, and as the story goes, believed that Gary Hinman, the drug manufacturer cum music teacher, had upwards of $20,000 in cash lying around his house. Manson needed some fast money to finance the move to Death Valley, and Hinman was the likely candidate to become his banker.

In this story, Hinman was held for three days and mercilessly beaten -- even had his ear sliced off by Manson -- to get information on where he had hidden his stash of cash, which they all -- including his ex-roommate, who knew him well -- assumed was a great deal of money, not just the G-note from the disgruntled bikers. (In the mythology that was Bugliosi's "Helter Skelter," perhaps one should note that the other outlaw bike gang that were rivals to Marlon Brando's gang in "The Wild One" were named "The Beetles" and likely were an inspiration for the Liverpool band's name; Brando as "The Wild One" appears in biker drag on the cover of "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Heart's Club Band," the cultural equivalent of Eiot's "The Waste Land" to the Baby Boom generation.) Hinman threatened to go to the police after his ordeal, and Beausoleil called Manson and was told, in cryptic terms, to kill Hinman. (Thus, Charlie was guilty of murder.)

Whether it was the result of a broken drug deal or the bikers' demand for a refund, the fact was that Gary Hinman was murdered. Beausoleil, the former roommate of the slain Hinman, would naturally have been a prime suspect in his slaying, He eventually was arrested in northern California driving Hinman's car and using his credit cards, both of which Bobby claimed that Hinman had freely given him. It seemed like an open and shut case, but for the revelation of who had been in on it with Beausoleil.

With his confederate arrested for the murder, it might have seemed to Manson that his time as a free man would be up shortly unless something could be done. Some observers claim that the subsequent murders that took seven lives on the nights of August 9th and 10th, 1969 were engineered copy-cat murders to make it appear that Beausoleil was innocent of the Hinman murder, that Hinman had been murdered by some psychopath still on the loose. While much remains unknown or unknowable about Charles Manson and the group around him, what is known is that on the night of August 9th, either acting under Manson's orders or not, Atkins and fellow Manson clanistas Tex Watson, Patricia Krenwinkel, and Linda Kasabian drove to 10050 Cielo Drive with the intent of committing mayhem, most likely murder. Some believe that Manson's motive was to scare Terry Melcher, to send him a message, although Manson's connection with his musical sponsor -- Dennis Wilson, who later claimed he had inadvertently helped create Manson's "Family" -- was over, so a message to Melcher would have gotten him nowhere fast. What is known from almost two decades worth of psychiatric evaluations of Manson BEFORE the Tate-LaBianaca killings was that Manson was a person constantly in need of attention. What soon transpired would make him one of the most famous -- and infamous -- people in the world.

Actress Sharon Tate, the wife of Roman Polanski who was at the early stages of a promising movie career, and three of her friends were staying at the house. It is unarguable that Manson knew the layout of the estate, but whether that effected the murder crew's ability to commit the crime can be put up to question. (The fact that Tex Watson had also frequently been at the estate as a guest of Dean Moorehouse, father of Manson clan member Ruth Ann Moorehouse, was not introduced into evidence at the trial. Dean Moorehouse, a familiar of Manson -- Charlie has almost been jailed in 1967 for his relationship with Moorehouse's daughter -- had lived at 10050 Cielo Drive after Terry Melcher moved out and before the Polanskis moved in. Moorehouse had been visited by Watson at least three and perhaps as many as six times. Bugliosi did not want the jury to know of Watson's intimate knowledge of the estate and the house where the slayings took place as he wanted to emphasize Manson's link to the house instead of Watson's. This was perhaps why Watson was tried separately, to help ensure Manson's conviction by portraying him as a Dr. Mabuse-style criminal mastermind.) What was most relevant about the estate is that it was remote, and there were no neighbors within distance who could be expected to hear what was about to take place. While Linda Kasabian stood guard, Atkins, Krenwinkel and Watson entered the estate after cutting the telephone wires.

The first victim that night was 18-year old Stephen Parent, whom Watson shot with the same .22 Buntline Special Manson had used on Lotsa Poppa while Parent sat in a car. (According to the purveyors of the Lotsa Poppa scenario, Watson was chosen to commit the bloody deed to serve penance for getting Manson into so much trouble in the first place.) Parent had been in the process of leaving the property after visiting the caregiver (who lived in a separate cottage in another part of the estate), who was a friend.

Kasabian, according to Atkins, was horrified by the Parent shooting. Atkins, Watson and Krenwinkle then entered the Polanski-Tate home and committed one of the most cold-blooded murders to disgrace the annals of crime, calling into effect the very nature of the human soul. What boggles the mind is the sheer evil of the event, the intensity of the killers as they lay waste to an innocent, heavily pregnant young woman and her three friends. When it was over, the word "Pig" was written in Tate's blood on the front door of the house (now demolished as it had the attractive power of Lourdes for the ghoulish and neo-Manson freaks), another theatrical flourish from Atkins.

The next evening, Watson, Krenwinkle. former high school home-coming queen Leslie Van Houten and allegedly Manson himself broke into the home of wholesale grocer Leno LaBianca and his wife Rosemary and committed another irrational, heinous murder. That night, Atkins was with Kasabian and clan member Steve Grogan (who had sung on a recording of Manson songs made at the Spahn Ranch with mobile recording equipment supplied by Dennis Wilson), who were trolling around L.A. in a car. The trio picked up Manson, having left the LaBianca home before the killing started, who had them drive him to the beach for a stroll. While at the beach, Manson asked Kasabian about Saladin Nader, a Lebanese actor who had portrayed the rival of the poet Kahlil Gibran (a turn of the 19th-20th century Aran poet whose collection "The Prophet" made him an icon of the 1960s), who lived nearby. A hitchhiking Kasabian had been picked up by Nader, and they had begun an affair. According to Kasabian, who was the state's star witness at the Tate-LaBianca trial, Manson's blood-lust had remained unsated, and he ordered the group to do in Nader.

According to Kasabian's subsequent trial testimony (having not committed any of the murders, she was granted immunity in exchange for her testifying against the others), she deliberately knocked on a wrong door in the apartment building in which Nader lived, thus sparing his life. Bugliosi used this event to exonerate her in the eyes of the jury, although some believe that she simply didn't remember where his apartment was located, which seems unlikely but was not impossible. While Kasabian was knocking on the wrong door as Atkins and Grogan waited around a corner, ready to spring on Nader and kill him (for what purpose has never been established other than an insane desire for murder), the other members of the Manson clan were finishing up their orgy of murder at the LaBianca home, using the couple's blood to write words on the walls of their home. Leon LaBianca had a knife stuck in his throat and a carving fork stuck in his stomach, allegedly a reference to The Beatles song "Piggies," George Harrison's bad-karma inducing indictment of materialism. The reference is given credence by the word "Piggies" written in blood at the LaBiance home.

Los Angeles assistant district attorney Vincent Bugliosi, in presenting his case to convict Charles Manson of multiple murder, faced the fact that Manson had actually killed no one, a precondition that might encourage one or more jury members to feel lenient towards him. This was also the period of the high tide of the liberal Warren Court, when right-wingers drove around in cars festooned with IMPEACH EARL WARREN bumper-stickers; that is, the age of the technicality, when trials had grown longer and convictions more precarious as increasingly liberal federal courts, including the Supreme Court, expanded the rights of those on trial and overturned many convictions on technicalities. The days of the expedient capital trial were over. Prosecutors had to be extra-careful.

As part of his strategy to convict Manson, whom he believed was evil, Bugliosi claimed that Manson was a cult-leader with a bizarre philosophy dubbed "Helter Skelter" after a Beatles song from the same "White Album" on which "Piggies" appeared. In Bugliosi's scenario, Manson allegedly prophesied a coming race war (a prophecy not out of tune with the times in a country that had seen multiple race riots starting with the Watts rebellion of 1965, a time that included such notorious conflagrations as the 1967 riots in Newark, New Jersey and Detroit, Michigan; a riot had even hit Washington, D.C. in 1968 after the Martin Luther King assassination; there was also the phenomenon of the de-colonization of Africa and Asia in the 1960s, which included rebellions in the Congo and the war in Vietnam that by 1970 had spread to Cambodia). Manson's "prophecy" was that blacks would eventually triumph against the white race and wipe them out, but unable to rule due to innate inferiority (Manson, according to Bugliosi, was a hardcore racist, likely because his own barely known father had been part black; the allegation about his father, a "Colonel Scott," being bi-racial was never proven and likely is false but was part of Bugliosi's buildup of Manson as a proto-HItler, creating a psychology -- and thus a motive for Manson's ordering the killings by his "acolytes" that they and Manson were on trial for -- that would explain him; some had alleged that Hitler's fanatic anti-semitism was the result of one of his grandparents being Jewish). Manson allegedly preached to his "Family" that they would hide in a hole in the desert in a City of Gold until the B+W Holocaust was over and the black man appealed to Manson and the Family for help. Manson and the Family would then have dominion over the world, with Charlie -- as the risen Jesus Christ -- ruling as one of five co-prophets, the other four prophets being The Beatles!

In the early '70s, after the time of psychedelia and the youth revolution and the breakup of The Beatles and John Lennon's unsettling flirtation with radical politics, this seemed more plausible to a jury than it might now. The idea of Ringo Starr as a prophet ruling the world is frankly absurd, but The Beatles were the avatars of the Youth Generation, and had been touted as prophets fit to rule a new world populated by the Children of the Age of Acquarius by LSD champion Dr. Timothy Leary. (John Lennon would boast in 1980 that LSD and The Beatles popularization of the psychedelic drug had undermined the Establishment and freed a generation, little appreciating the toll psychedelics had taken on many, including former straight-A student Tex Watson and an acid-addled Baby Boomer, David Chapman, who would soon kill him.) The problem with the "Helter Skelter" theory is was that Charles Manson was no Baby Boomer, but a hardened ex-con in his mid-30s who had lived a harsh, brutal life since he was an illegitimate child sold for a pitcher of beer by his teenage mother. He was not some flower-power hippie with stars in his eyes, and his music was not influenced by or evocative of The Beatles, but had a more countryish flavor.

One thing frequently overlooked is if Manson had believed this story, and with the amount of drugs consumed in those times and the weird life being lived in the desert, one can speculate that some of this fantasy might have had some resonance in his psyche, something thrown up from the unconscious that he may have used as a story-teller to bind people to him -- something from his psyche that he may have believed IN KIND (an imminent race war; the failure of Western civilization in the near future; sitting out Armageddon in the desert; returning once "society" was over and he -- an outcast - could be appreciated by a race of outcasts, the people of color who inherited a world destroyed by the white race -- these were apocalyptic times lived in the shadow of The Bomb and nuclear annihilation) but not IN DEGREE. If Manson was speaking in anything but metaphor, then he was beyond psychosis and was insane, and couldn't be responsible for his actions. This was the course that Bugliosi was navigating, the Scylla and Charybdis of trying to convict Charles Manson: that he was likely insane and could be perceived as such by a jury. So: How to convict him?

Sadie Mae Glutz gave Bugliosi the smoking gun.

In October 1969, the Barker Ranch in Death Valley that Manson and the clan had moved to was raided after Charlie -- a fervent environmentalist to this day -- burned a Forest Service tractor. Members of the Manson clan were arrested for arson (Charlie was not there at the time). Clan member Kathryn Lutesinger implicated Atkins in the Hinman murder while they were both incarcerated, and Atkins was transferred to another prison, ostensibly due to the new charges, though there is a possibility that she was being set up for a "jailhouse confession." For it was in her new surroundings that she began bragging to her cell-mates about her and the Manson clan's involvement in the Tate massacre, which was the talk of the country in late 1969.

Sadie, that is Susan Atkins, supposedly loved to talk, and talk she did, according to her cell-mates. She talked to them about the Sharon Tate killings, claiming that it was she who had done it along with the gang congregated around Manson. She told her cell-mates about Manson's "Helter Skelter" philosophy, that Manson had decided to get the race war underway by murdering prominent Caucasians and blaming it on Afro-Americans, such as the Black Panthers, who would then feel the retaliation of the white race. (That the Black Panthers were being systematically destroyed by the FBI's Cointelpro program, which likely included assassination, is besides the point.) Thus, would the rough beast of the racial Apocalypse be unleashed.

Atkins, a self-confessed, remorseless murderess, was obviously mad, and the Helter Skelter scenario might have been an elaboration of her feverish imagination, or a gloss put on Manson's own racial/sociological theories born in the internecine warfare of prison life, which broke along racial lines. Then again, it could have been something cooked up by prosecutors who coached her with the story as she was, at one point, interested in saving her own hide, put in jeopardy by the Hinman murder.

Ironically, one of Atkins two cell-mates who heard her jail-house confession had been an acquaintance of Jay Sebring -- one of the victims at the Polanski-Tate residence - and had actually been to 10050 Cielo Drive (properly pronounced "cello," the Italian word that means "Heaven" was given to the stringed instrument as it was the sound of heaven), the site of the Tate massacre, and quizzed her about the property to see if she was telling the truth -- whether she had actually been there -- or was just repeating what she had read in the newspapers. The cell-mate realized she was telling the truth, and attempted to inform the L.A.P.D., according to Bugliosi. However, such a wild coincidence -- that the cell-mate of Sharon Tate's killer would have known Tate's ex-fiancée, Jay Sebring, who had allegedly taken her to the house SEVEN YEARS before the Tate killings, whose victims dispatched to heaven had included Sebring himself, suggests that she might have been a plant.

It is quite probable that Charles Manson WAS concerned with a coming racial Armageddon that DID seem imminent in the late 1960s after years of inner-city riots (riots recently matched by those of middle-class university students protesting the Vietnam War and the strictures of the Estabishment) and that he DID want to move himself and his friends as far away from the failing civilization as possible as a survival mechanism. (In this, he is kin to the "Survivalists" of the 1980s and 1990s and our own times who have retreated to rural areas in the Pacific Northwest to avoid the consequences of an anticipated societal meltdown, many of whom are white supremacists fearful of a black planet.) That Charlie's fear and desire assumed the "Helter Skelter" paranoiac/psychotic dimensions as recounted by Bugliosi increasingly has been questioned in the over thirty years since the trial.

Jailhouse confessions are often suspect, but Susan Atkins repeated her "testimony" heard by her cell-mates before a Grand Jury. Hoping to be spared the death penalty, Atkins -- who was promised immunity from prosecution -- swore that the Gary Hinman murder and the Tate-Labianca murders has been committed under the express orders of Charles Manson. Atkins claimed that it was she who stabbed eight-months pregnant Sharon Tate to death, a particularly brutal act even within the context of the Cieo Drive massacre in that the group of murderers had kept Tate, who pleaded for the life of her unborn baby, alive to the last. Restraining Tate while her friends were brutally butchered before her eyes, Atkins said that she had coldly told the terrified actress that she would be murdered: "Look, bitch, I don't care a thing about you. You're going to die and there's nothing you can do about it."

She further testified that she stabbed Tate repeatedly as the dying actress cried out in anguish for her own mother before perishing. She then tasted the blood of Sharon Tate that was on her hand, figuratively sucking the life out of her. It was one of the most appalling stories of its kind, shocking people who had lived through more than half-a-century of mass-murder since the First World War.

During her testimony before the Grand Jury, Atkins testified that Manson was "the only complete man I have ever met" who she believed him to be Jesus Christ incarnate. There was no limit to the acts she would undertake for Manson, she claimed.

From Atkins' Grand Jury testimony -- which she later refuted, thus losing her immunity -- indictments were obtained. Manson, Krenwinkel and Watson were arrested and a warrant issued for Kasabian, whose whereabouts were unknown. After being arrested, Kasabian was offered the immunity deal that Atkins, out of loyalty to Manson, had surrendered.

The Manson "Family" trial is one of the handful of courtroom dramas that legitimately can lie claim to being "The Trial of the Century." Not only did it symbolize the death of the '60s and a waning of the challenge to authority by the youthful idealism of the counter-culture (coming on the heels of violent student rebellions in Paris, the U.S. and elsewhere), it was a media circus, a raging fire stoked by "Family" members and Charles Manson himself, who finally had all the attention a sociopath could crave.

By the time of the trial, Atkins had recanted her testimony and was back within the bosom of the clan. Along with Manson, Krenwinkel and Van Houten, Atkins was tried for first-degree murder for the Tate-LaBianca killings. (Tex Watson was tried separately at a later date.) The trial was full of theatrics: The women defendants carved an X on their foreheads and shaved their heads to show their solidarity with Manson, who had similarly carved an X on himself, and constantly disrupted the courtroom. On the stand, when Atkins was asked if she thought the killing of eight people was unimportant, her response was a question: Was the killing of thousands with napalm (in Vietnam) important? As Manson had said, look into my eyes and you will see yourself: The trial held up a mirror to a dysfunctional America. American society -- which had been rejected by Manson and his clan of drifters, dropouts and runaways -- was itself indicting the U.S. for mass murder via the mass media.

Herbert Marcuse, one of the New School for Social Research (Frankfurt am Main, Germany) veterans who had synthesized Freud and Marx, has claimed at the time that the U.S. was a society mortally diseased from its embrace of one-dimensional materialism. As a sick society, it had sought to expiate its psycho-sexual sins by burning the living flesh off of Vietnamese peasants with napalm bombs. Embracing the Youth Revolution, Marcuse had advocated a progressive politics beyond sterile, puritanical Leninism (then in vogue as Maoism, famously attacked by John Lennon in The Beatles' song "Revolution #1," another "White Album" ditty). Marcusean politics vulgarly could be seen as resistance through sex: release from the uptight, hypocritical, one-dimensional society of materialism, i.e. capitalism. The hippies, and their re-visioning through a glass darkly in "The Family" of Charles Manson, with the hippies free love philosophy could be seen as the crystallization of Marcuse's thought (and through "The Family," reconciled with the traditional Biblical bromide "The wages of sin is death," an attitude Marcuse and the hippies rebelled against but which was also applied, cruelly, to the murdered Sharon Tate but both conservatives AND Manson supporters, for being a supposed symbol of Hollywood decadence, and thus complicit in her fate); thus, Manson and the Tate-LaBianaca killings effectively undermined one of the more potent challenges (particularly among avant-garde artists, such as Lennon's wife Yoko Ono) to the Western status quo outside of mainstream Marx-Leninism.

The trial was the end of an era all right, and Bugliosi played on the fears of the jury and America at large by portraying Manson as a demonic messiah after the souls of their children (thus explaining the youth rebellion away from any challenges to the materialism that was the heart of the "The business of America is business"/"What's good for General Motors is good for the country" ethos of the U.S.A., best seen from one's Chevrolet, according to a popular advertising jingle sung by Dinah Shore in the 1950s, herself the victim of rumors like Charles Manson that she was bi-racial). Even President Richard Nixon chimed in, claiming that Manson was guilty (which threatened Bugliosi with a mistrial due to adverse publicity in light of the Supreme Court's recent Samuel Sheppard decision).

In March 1971, after the longest and most expensive trial in Los Angeles history in which Bugliosi insisted that Manson was a charismatic cult leader who believed he received secret messages from The Beatles' "White Album" -- a veritable demon who threatened the very basis of Western civilization itself -- all four were found guilty of first-degree murder. Bugliosi, with the aid of the Manson clan's bizarre, attention-seeking courtroom behavior, had got his convictions, with the unintended consequence of transmogrifying Charles Manson -- who most likely was nothing more than a sometime pimp and minor career criminal with a pimp's savvy on how to control young women, who out of a drug-induced paranoia engineered the Tate-LaBianaca killings in a misguided attempt to free Bobby Beausoleil and ironically divert what he assumed was the attention of the Black Panthers away from himself by embroiling them with the L.A.P.D. (if 10050 Cielo Drive had not then been inhabited by a beautiful young actress married to a famous director and her wealthy and sophisticated friends but someone more mundane, the likelihood is that Manson and the killings would have been forgotten long ago) -- into a huge cult figure, as well as a cultural bellwether, one of the great symbols of an America run amok.

Seemingy possessed of a histrionic personality that he failed to satisfy through music, Manson played the part, getting the attention prison psychiatrists sad he always had sought. Bugliosi and many others have made a great deal of money off of the mythological figure of Charles Manson as the Flower Power/Baby Boomer Anti-Christ.

Susan Atkins, her beloved "Charlie" and the others were all sentenced to death (Tex Watson was tried separately and convicted), and Atkins was remanded to the California Institute for Women. The death sentences were later vacated when the California Supeme Court overturned the death penalty as unconstitutional, and Atkin's sentence was reduced to life with the possibility of parole.

In 1974, Atkins had a falling out with Manson and the clan that still clung to him after she began corresponding with born-again Christian Bruce Davis, a clan member who had rejected Manson & Co. for mainstream salvation. Atkins subsequently claimed that the real Jesus Christ, not the simulacrum that was Charles Manson, appeared to her in her prison cell. She became a born-again Christian and a model prisoner, publishing a 1977 autobiography, "Child of Satan, Child of God." In the book, she described how in September 1974, her cell door opened and "a brilliant light poured over her." Atkins believed the light was Jesus, bearing forgiveness.

In 1981, via the mail, she met and married Donald Laisure, who claimed he was a millionaire. Upon discovering that her husband was not a millionaire and had previously been married 35 times, she had the marriage annulled. The model prisoner eventually earned an Associates degree via correspondence courses and organized her own ministry. She married Harvard law student James Whitehouse in 1987, who who has represented her at parole hearings since 2000.

Atkins is denied parole on the basis that she continues to show no remorse for the killings. Her case hasn't been helped by her 1991 recanting of her earlier testimony. Her position now is that she was present during the Hinman and Tate murders but did not actually participate in the killing. Her inability to show remorse and her failure to accept responsibility for her part in the brutal murders has meant that she has been turned down for parole 11 times, the last time in February 2005. In 2003, she made the contention that she was a political prisoner in a lawsuit filed against California Governor 'Gray Davis', as his policy opposing parole for most murderers meant she was kept behind bars. Her petition was denied.

Simon Horrocks

Simon Horrocks was born in Palmers Green, North London, on July 11th, 1965. He is the son of Anthony Horrocks and Janet Youngs, who separated when he was 3 years old. He has one older brother, Nicolas Horrocks, and a younger half-brother, Nathan Horrocks.

Simon Horrocks spent part of his early childhood raised on an art and crafts commune in Somerset. After his father watched Easy Rider in 1969, he left his job as a lecturer at Hornsey School of Art and led a group of artists to start an alternative life on a farmhouse converted into studios.

Horrocks made his first films from the age of 8, shooting with a clockwork 8mm camera. At the age of 9, his father went to live in St Lucia and he moved back with his mother and stepfather, Iain Manson, attending St Dunstans Secondary School. At 13, the family moved back to North London, where Horrocks has lived since (apart from 2 years in Brighton, from 1988-1990).

Doing a Foundation in Art & Design in 1983-84 at Middlesex University, he again worked on 8mm films, this time in collaboration with Jonathan Glazer (Sexy Beast, Under the Skin). He applied to do a degree in Fine Art Film at St Martin University, but when he failed to get a place he went on to start a career music.

In 1991 he formed pop-dance duo Aquarius with his then life-partner, Sarah Jane Fogg. Their debut single "Hey Babe" was awarded Melody Maker "Single of the Week" in January, 1993, two weeks after their first son, Titus, was born. Completely self-promoted, the song was played on Radio 1, notably by legendary DJ John Peel.

Although, the exposure would normally have resulted in the song making it into the UK charts, the record label (Solid Pleasure, owned by Yello's Dieter Meier) had failed to distribute the single to stores as they didn't believe the song would get any media attention, and the release was a commercial failure.

Horrocks and Fogg went on to produce Tara Newley's debut album (unreleased) for Trevor Horn's ZTT label. From 1997, they worked for major publishing label Carlin Music, who were later bought by Warner Chappell.

After splitting with Sarah Fogg in 2008, in 2009 Horrocks set out to make his debut feature, Third Contact. Shooting the film on consumer camcorder, without a crew and a budget of £4000, it took 3 years to complete.

On Sept 2nd, 2013, Third Contact made cinema history by being the first self-funded micro-budget film to screen during peak time at London's BFI IMAX and the first full-length fiction film to premiere in-theatre and simultaneously broadcast live to over 20 countries with a follow up director's Q&A via twitter and Google hangout.

Third Contact was shot on a consumer camcorder, without a professional crew, on a budget of £4000 and premiered at the prestigious Hof Film Festival in Germany. German press reviewed the film very favourably, with award-winning critic Thomas Rothschild hailing it as a "masterpiece" and comparing it to work by Evald Schorm and Ken Loach.

David Koresh

US cult leader, David Koresh was born Vernon Howell in West Texas. His mother Bonnie Holdman was only 14 when his illegitimate birth occurred. Koresh's childhood was disruptive. A dyslexic he dropped out of school in the 9th grade. He was kicked out of his SDA church for 'ranting and raving' and went to Hollywood to try and make it as a rock star. After failed attempts at obtaining his dreams he went to Mt. Carmel religious commune outside Waco, Texas in 1983. It was run by a splinter faction from the SDA church who called themselves Branch Dravidians that was formed by Bulgarian Victor Houteff in the 1930s. Koresh began to preach at Mt. Carmel. He even claimed to be an angel sent by God and wanted to combine rock and roll along with religion. Koresh was expelled from Mt. Vernon along with 25 disciples. They went on an aimless trek through the South West until they stopped at Palestine, Texas. On Tuesday, November 3, 1987 Koresh and his followers tried to take over the Mt. Carmel commune by force. They fired machine guns at the commune, and in turn, they were fired back upon. The local authorities intervened and jailed members from both sides. However Koresh got out on bail and finally took over Mt. Carmel. His rival was deemed mentally unsound and charges were dropped in the trial in 1988. Koresh was now in total control of Mt. Carmel. He began to attract largely vulnerable and insecure people to his "flock". Koresh got married to a 14 year old girl but decided that he could have a "harem of many wives" as he wanted. He set up a harem which he called his "house of David". Some of his concubines were as young as 10 years. He created a goon squad that he called "mighty men". Koresh then claimed that he was not only the only one allowed to have as many 'wives' as he wanted, but also the only one who could have a wife. He eventually 'married' as many as 19 cult women and fathered at least 12 of their children. In 1990 he legally changed his name to David Koresh (a combination of "King David" and the Hebrew name for Cyrus the Great). Koresh had now become an absolute dictator. While his disciples worked on the farm in the sweltering heat he stayed inside an air-conditioned indoors. He even changed the name of the commune to Ranch Apocalypse. Koresh gradually began building an arsenal at the Ranch. They had a .50 caliber machine gun and over 300 firearms amounting to 11 tons of firepower in all. A bus was even buried to act as a bunker! The FBI became concerned about the developments at Koresh's Ranch. On Sunday, February 28, 1993 they launched a command raid on the Ranch. The siege lasted 51 days. Finally tired of waiting, the FBI used tear gas bombs, (designed like hand grenades) and sent in tanks. A fire broke out in the ranch. By the time they were able to break in and put if out they found David Koresh along with 75 followers dead (including 25 children, 12 his own).

Jean-Paul Le Chanois

For many decades, no French director was held in greater contempt than Jean-Paul Le Chanois (1909-1985). He was the perfect target of criticism by the New Wave filmmakers of the late 1950s and 1960s. However, unlike other targets of the Young Turks, Chanois was never restored to favor. Nevertheless, a small number of his films deserve recognition.

A member of the Communist Party and a union man, Chanois collaborated (as Jean-Paul Dreyfus, his real name) with famed director Jean Renoir and others on "La vie est à nous" (1936). A propaganda film for the French Communist Party, "La vie est à nous" has not aged well and failed to capture the Front Populaire zeitgeist like Duvivier's "La Belle Equipe" did.

Chanois' next film "The Time of the Cherries" (1938) borrowed its title from the eponymous revolutionary song of the Paris Commune and was an overtly socialist movie: It told the story of two families, a wealthy one and a working-class one, but a muddled screenplay undermined its overall quality.

After serving as a resistance fighter during World War II, Chanois resumed his film career in 1946 with "Messieurs Ludovic" which featured endearing characters and an overt populism which reflected his deep political convictions. Next came "Au Coeur De L'Orage" (1948), a patriotic documentary about the French Resistance which compared favorably to René Clément's "La Bataille Du Rail." At the time, the French public tolerated only heroic depictions of France's wartime events. It would take Marcel Ophüls' "The Sorrow and the Pity" (1971) to show the dark side of the mirror. But, as a resistance fighter himself, Chanois knew what he was talking about, and the sincerity of his documentary cannot be called into question.

Then came arguably Chanois' finest work: "L'Ecole Buissonnière" (1949), based on the life of teacher Celestin Freinet. In the film, a war hero becomes a teacher in a small village. He rejects the old methods of instruction: Gone is the iron discipline; gone is the lesson you learned by heart even if you did not understand a single word of it; gone is the dunce shamefully hidden in the back of the classroom. Although tarnished by its association with Chanois' later works, the film is one of the best postwar movies and is still relevant today.

"Sans Laisser D'Adresse" and "Agence Matrimoniale" resumed Chanois' populist theme and added a heartfelt humanism. In these films, all his directorial trademarks were in evidence; in particular, his sympathy for lonely people and for the character who must face a hostile world.

At the time, Chanois' career was progressing in a good direction, but it didn't seem that way after both "Papa, Mama, the Maid and I" and "Papa, Mama, My Wife and Me." The films gave a false picture of the average French family of the nineteen-fifties - a biology teacher, a former actress, and a lawyer aren't exactly typical representations of working people.

Chanois' later film "Les Miserables" (1958) is perhaps his most well-known work. Although a massive hit in France and the second most widely seen film of 1958, contemporary critics vocally preferred Raymond Bernard's classic 1930s version. They deemed Chanois' film to be a disappointing adaptation of Victor Hugo's mammoth novel; various members of the French press ridiculed the casting of singer Bourvil as Thénardier.

Chanois' other filmography is unremarkable except for "The Fugitives" (1955). The film's action occurs in a train boxcar. The screenplay was based on a true story with one of the actors portraying himself during the war. Another notable film is "The Case of Dr. Laurent," a heartfelt plea for painless childbirth.

Pál Fejös

Budapest-born director Paul Fejos first called attention to himself in Kecskemét, Hungary, as a student actor. During World War I he was a soldier in the army of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and after the war he became a student of chemistry. His artistic inclination, however, drew him to the scenery workshop of the local opera house. In 1919 he organized the film-scenic affairs of the Government of the Commune. Later he became scenic director of Orient Film and in 1920 he was the leading director for the Mobil Film Co., and also wrote the scripts for his films. His early works are adventure sketches, but even they show his growing reputation for demanding high standards. He still kept his hand in stage work, though, and tried to establish a folklorist passion play in the Hungarian city of Mikófalva.

In 1923, after the failure of his film Stars of Eger, he left Hungary. Arriving in Vienna, Austria, he worked with the legendary Max Reinhardt, then traveled to Berlin to study with Fritz Lang. He later went to the US, working at the Rockefeller Institute for Chemistry as an assistant chemist, eventually becoming a medical bacteriologist. His passion for film never left him, though, and in 1927 he used his own money to produce and direct an avant-garde piece called "Az utolsó pillanat", which told the story of a suicide victim. The film was critically and financially successful, and Universal Pictures put him under contract. His next film was Lonesome, a sweet film about two lonely people who meet at an amusement park, enjoy a wonderful day together but lose each other in the crowd and frantically search for each other. In 1932 he returned to Hungary to shoot two films for a French production company: Ítél a Balaton and Spring Shower, a tale of a servant girl for a wealthy family who is fired and driven from her village when she gets pregnant by the fiance of the family's daughter.

He stayed in Europe for a while, shooting films in Austria and Denmark, then traveled to Asia and spent several years shooting documentaries. He made his last film in 1941 and switched careers to archaeological and anthropological research. He led an archaeological expedition to ancient Inca towns in South America, and published several scientific papers. He was President of the Wenner-Green Foundation and spent time lecturing on archaeology. He died in New York City in 1963.

Michael Lieber

Michael Lieber (born 6th May 1988) is a Stage and Screen actor mostly credited for playing English Gentleman and sinister young men, Originating from the seaside town of Tenby, South Wales, Michael started acting at the tender age of 11 playing bit parts in Welsh TV shows before going on to train at The Oxford School Of Drama and the R. S. Repertory in Reading. Before discovering his love of film Michael had burned up the London stage for nearly a decade his most praised performances by Theatre critics being the has-bin footballer Ray Keane in Matt Gunn's dark comedy play 'Transfer Deadline Day' at the Courtyard Theatre and the twisted Dr. Mortimer in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's 'The Hound Of The Baskervilles' at The Garrick. Since then Michael has largely devoted himself to inhabiting a motley crew of characters on film, A hand full of his lead roles to date include the psychotic Standup comedian Marcus Crew in the British cult Thriller A Room to Die For alongside Harry potter's Jon Campling and Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels Vas Blackwood , The drugged up commune leader Freddie Jackson in the 1971 drama 'Children In Manors (2014)' which premiered at Raindance Film Festival back in 2014 and the playboy mathematician John E. Littlewood in the award winning period drama Ramanujan alongside EastEnder's Kevin McGowan and London's Burning Richard Walsh

Stephen Sullivan

Stephen L Sullivan, or "Sully", is an actor based in Los Angeles, CA. He will be seen in the upcoming season 2 of "Criminal Minds:Beyond Borders". Recently, he was found portraying the iconic "John Lennon" in the HBO's series, "Vinyl", in episode 8, "E.A.B.". Stephen is well known for his role as "Clay" in AMC's "Mad Men" for his encounter with Roger Sterling at the hippie commune in the episode entitled, "The Monolith". He was seen also as "Dennis Wilson", on Lifetime's, "Manson's Lost Girls". He has been found on the short end of a rope as cattle wrangler, "Cooper James" in "Longmire". As the fratricidal "Liam Finnegan" of the Channel Street Boys in "Rizzoli & Isles". And as the itchy trigger fingered "Sean Rourke" in the short lived series, "Ironside". He was also seen as "Serge" on the long running "General Hospital".

Jesper Tøffner

Jesper is a young talented Cinematographer, born in Denmark in 1978.

He is Director of Photography on some of the most successful feature films and TV series in Denmark.

Among Jesper's lastest work is Thomas Vinterberg's The Commune. The Commune is selected for Competition for the Golden Bear, for Best Film at the 66th Berlin Film Festival 2016.

In 2014 Jesper was Cinematographer on the feature film Comeback, and in 2009 Applause, Winner of Label Europa Cinemas at Karlov Vary International Film Festival. And in 2011 Dirch, the most seen feature film in Danish cinema that year, where Jesper Tøffner was nominated for Best Cinematography by The Danish Academy Award, 2012.

Furthermore he is working on various TV series and commercials.

Elisabeth Fies

The prolific, funny, and fearless writer/director/producer of feature thriller "The Commune", awarded Best International Picture at Bram Stoker Festival.

Despite the terrible timing of winning "Best Action Screenplay" by Fade In Magazine and "Best Thriller Screenplay" by Creative Screenwriting Magazine days before the 2007 Writers's Strike, Elisabeth's unproduced spaghetti western script "Pistoleras" took the blogosphere by storm and remains her most requested screenplay.

Her forte is thriller/horror and superhero actioners. Fies cites Star Wars and Twin Peaks as influences ingested at a cellular level, and most wishes she had directed "Terminator 2".

Elisabeth's undergraduate UCLA years included interning at Debra Hill Productions and doing stunts as monsters on the The Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers. With a prestigious grant from Do Something, she created and starred in the indie TV show "Kids Know it All!" After earning her first Masters degree from New School University in Media Studies, she returned to UCLA to study screenwriting in the renowned Professional Program, where co-chair Hal Ackerman declared her a brilliant writer.

Before embarking on her own filmmaking career, Fies was an associate producer on acclaimed no-budget triumph "Conventioneers", a political Romeo & Juliet tale that overcame industry powerhouses "Brick" and "Puffy Chair" to claim the 2006 Independent Spirit Award in the John Cassavettes category.

Lis comes from a family of accomplished artists she refers to as the Tennebaums or "West Coast Sedaris clan." She learned how to read on her cartoonist brother's Avengers comic books. In 2005, Brian Fies won the first digital Eisner Award for Mom's Cancer, an intimate graphic novel starring Elisabeth, sister Brenda, himself, and their deceased mom Barbara.

Fies collaborates with her sister Brenda on film shorts. In 2010, the diabolical Fies Sisters founded BleedFest. The mission grew out of their experience taking The Commune on the festival circuit and finally meeting other women with similar taste. The BleedFest Film Festival has screened over 100 films; celebrated the works of Anna Biller, Stacey Title, and mentor Katt Shea; and presented Partnership Awards to male genre luminaries like Ryan Levin, Lucky McKee and Drew Daywalt who create multidimensional female characters. Many alums state BleedFest has given them more press and opportunities than any other festival.

Lis is an accomplished academic whose published work includes a graduate thesis on Catwoman's feminist influence on twentieth century pop culture. She is the rare auteur who is as comfortable onset as she is in the classrooms of her alma maters New School and UCLA. A founding member of the Scribosphere, Lis is a supportive and accessible mentor to screenwriters and DIY filmmakers and loves speaking on panels. Her work has been extensively profiled everywhere from the L.A. Times, NY Times, Huffington Post, FEARnet to Cinematical.

Voted a top 10 movie reviewer by millions of Netflix subscribers three years running, Lis Fies above all remains passionate about storytelling.

R.J. Kizer

His childhood home was in New Jersey. After a couple years in a commune, he attended the NYU film school, where he graduated and worked in the New York film industry. Moving to California, he edited several features for Roger Corman, and then directed some cult classic low-budget features such as Death Ring and Hell Comes to Frogtown.

Sarah Dawn Finer

Born 1981 as the youngest daughter of an immigrant family to Sweden - her mother Francine - a Jewish dance therapist from the Bronx, New York, and her father David - a medical journalist from London, England - Sarah Dawn Finer was surrounded by a lot of multicultural of influences from the word go.

She grew up in a commune, full of people, music and impressions during a period of rich artistic creativity.

With professional singers like Eric Bibb (international blues artist), and her grandmother Dorothy Irving (professor in the classical lieder tradition) in the family, Sarah had leading exponents of rich and diverse vocal traditions close at hand.

Her home resounded with world music along with a multitude of other musical artists and genres - from Mozart to Bob Marley, Bob Dylan to Stevie Wonder, Janis Joplin to Nina Simone and all that mixed with hip-hop and house.

In the Finer-Mirro home, Sarah was also exposed to a lot of dance - especially by following her brother (dancer) Rennie Mirro's career, seeing a lot of theatre and film, as well as being immersed in the fiery global political debates of the day.

At the age of 6, Sarah landed a leading role in a TV series. This sparked her interest in performing, and soon Sarah and her older sister Zoie, now a singer and music teacher, joined a touring musical theatre company for kids, where they danced, sung and acted.

In her early teens, she starred in several Swedish TV series and films, as well as participating in talent competitions while spending her school years in the time-honored Stockholm music school of Adolf Fredrik (AF).

At AF, Sarah sang in choirs with a predominantly traditional, classical repertoire. Aged 12, to add some spice to her choir practice, Sarah approached the gospel/soul choir One Voice, staying with the choir for 6 years, giving concerts, touring and recording. The experience led on to her first own engagements, as a back-up singer behind various Swedish artists,and a session singer on demo records and jingles for songwriters and TV programs.

After high school studies at the Stockholm Music Conservatory Rytmus, Sarah decided to leave school at the age of 17 and embark wholeheartedly on a career as an artist.

The following years enriched her with a wide range of learning experiences, as she was extremely fortunate in having the opportunity to work as session/backing singer/musician with some of Sweden's top-ranking artists,songwriters and producers.

The list of artists is long and wide (check MUSIC) - from soulful Eric Gadd and Stephen Simmonds, rockers Teddybears STHLM to ABBA pop icon Agnetha Fältskog just to name a few, and among the producers e.g. Anders Bagge, Kristian Lundin, Andreas Carlsson and Peer Åström, who have written and produced for world artists such as Madonna, Celine Dion, Janet Jackson and Britney Spears, etc.

For a young artist, Sarah already has a formidable track record of concerts, tours and recordings, providing invaluable insights into diverse genres -soul, pop, rock, gospel, house, hip-hop, jazz and chansons.

She has also starred in musicals and shows such as RENT, Godspell and LIFE by and with the Swedish performer and writer Jonas Gardell.

Feeling the need for a time-out, Sarah, then 21 years old, moved to New York, and that's where she really felt inspired and got in to writing her own material..

Upon returning home, her development as a solo artist continued by way of duets with popular Swedish artists Moneybrother and Peter Jöback and appearances at large televised concerts, gala and royal festivities, like with ceremonies such the Stockholm Water Prize and the Polar Music Prize.

In 2004, Sarah also met and started collaborating with Glen Scott, a prominent artist, musician and songwriter then based in London, and other songwriters abroad and in Sweden to record more and more of her own songs.

This brings us up to date, to the beginning of what looks like a bright future and a great musical journey for this singer. During 2005, Sarah has sung under her own name with different great tours and concerts. She has also been the opening act for such artist as US-talent Gavin Degraw.

This year, as opposed too waiting for decisions from others, and in order to remain somewhat in control without to much influence from "the biz", she assumed a firm command of her own career and decided to release her music on her own. And so, in September of 2005 the live recorded EP - "Sarah Dawn Finer" came out.

2006 Sarah toured and did variety shows, and in 2007 the BIG Break really happend.. Sarah wrote "I remember love" with Peter Hallström and sent it in to the Swedish Eurovision Song Contest. The song was 1 of 32 that was chosen out of more than 3200 and in Feb at the Semi finals - Sarah rockets att the way to the finals, finishes 4th and becomes a smash hit on the charts and radio with the song. The debut Full length album came out in May of 2007 and debut of no 2 in the album charts! The album and the single sold gold status!

Sisse Graum Jørgensen

Producer Sisse Graum Jørgensen (b. 1972) is permanently associated with Zentropa where she's both management and a member of the board. She is also a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences® as well as the European Film Academy.

In her work, Sisse is highly focused on supporting and strengthening the qualities of each individual director as well as promoting and advocating quality films with high artistic ambitions.

Graum Jørgensen is primarily known for her long-standing, successful collaborations with esteemed director profiles such as Susanne Bier, Thomas Vinterberg, Kristian Levring and Pernille Fischer Christensen as well as renowned screenwriters like Anders Thomas Jensen, Tobias Lindholm and Kim Fupz Aakeson.

Sisse Graum's productions reap both national and international acclaim. So far this has, among other, resulted in an Oscar®, three Oscar® nominations, a Golden Globe®, two Golden Globe® nominations, two official selections in Cannes, an award for Best Actor in Cannes, the Jury Prize in Cannes and three European Film Awards.

This coming year will see the release of Thomas Vinterberg's drama "The Commune" (2016), which is inspired by Vinterberg's own childhood growing up in a commune, and Jesper W. Nielsen's "The Day Will Come" (2016), which is written by creator of "The Killing" Søren Sveistrup's and based on actual events at a boys home in the late 60's.

Pamela Hardy

Pamela D. Hardy, at an early age, became aware of the great depth of her emotions. Despite being taunted as "overly sensitive," she initially used this gift of expression towards writing fiction and poetry. She later caught the acting bug while attending Columbia College (Chicago) where she minored in theatre arts. In conjunction with her college studies, she also trained for several years with Edward G. Fogell at the Chicago Actor's Studio as well as taking improvisation workshops at Second City & Groundlings (LA).

She has performed in stage classics such as "Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolf?" & "A Streetcar Named Desire" as well as many contemporary plays in Los Angeles, Chicago & San Antonio. She has been a part of several improvisation troupes as well as acted on television shows such as "A Haunting" (Destination America), Good Day SA on KENS 5 & 90210.

She lives on the Atlantic ocean in central Florida. When not acting, she continues to write, volunteer at her local dog shelter and communes with various sea critters when frolicking in the surf.

Lynn-Marie Stetson

Grew up outside Saratoga Springs, New York. She first began her acting career in a local troupe of middle school and high school students, SpaHa. She decided to continue the path after a great experience playing Rizzo in a high school production. Studied at scAMDA in Manhattan. Currently resides in Brooklyn with the rest of the hipsters, but would prefer to be on a commune somewhere hugging trees.

Josef Geiger

Josef Saraha Geiger is an American director, cinematographer and editor. He is best known for the "Pumped Up Kicks" music video for Foster the People for which he was nominated by MTV for Best Rock Music Video in 2011.

Born on a commune in southern Sweden, Josef moved to the United States at four years old and was raised in the quasi-suburban wilds of southern Maine. He learned filmmaking during his enlistment as an AV Documentation Specialist for the Massachusetts Air National Guard and during his education at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, graduating with a degree in Communications.

Following college Josef decided to move to Los Angeles in 2004. While in LA, he worked on various projects from music videos, behind the scenes videos, web series, short films and spec commercials. In 2014 Josef moved to Hamburg, Germany. Once there he quickly found himself utilizing his filmmaking skills for clients such as Sparkasse Lüneburg, Lagardére Sports, STILL, Bundesliga teams (HSV, FC Nürnberg, Karlsruher SC, Bielefeld SC), DFB Pokal 2015, Telekom Cup 2014, DSV Weltcup - Garmisch Partenkirchen. He continues to live and work out of Hamburg.

Coming from an international family of visual artists, Josef takes many of his visual ideas and cues from his unconventional upbringing and life experiences. His grandmother Katja and cousin Lotta Stensson are fashion designers, his grandfather Rod was film producer, his cousin Simen Johan is an art photographer and his brother Rumi is a filmmaker as well.

Aura Esther Trentin

Aura Trentin (born Aurélie Hauglustaine) was born in Belgium. She is one of Belgium's leading high fashion-beauty professional models. While graduating high school and the Music Conservatory, she was elected Belgian National Model 2000 sponsored by Olivier Dachkin. Shortly after, Aura signed up with New Models Agency and got published in multiple national and international Newspaper.

Aura has made the covers of You Magazine, ELLE, Chica, Bien Etre, Olivier Dachkin Magazine, etc. She also appears regularly in B&G Magazine, HauteCoiffure, FashionUK, 3Suisses Catalog. Trentin's campaigns include H&M, L'Oreal, Schwarzkopf, United Colors of Benetton, XYZ Coiffure, Milani Hair, Verizon, Olivier Dachkin, Annick Cayot, Mango, Pastel Belgium, Yves Rocher, Palm Spring desert crossing, Veer,... Aura Trentin received the Color Trophy Award for Modeling in Dachkin Colors, in Brussels, 2000. As well, she received the Profile Photo Award by Schwarzkopf during her black and white campaign with the mohawk.

Trentin received her College Degrees in Communication in Movies and Arts, in 2003. that led her to acting and directing. She won the Zoom-Sur-Ta-Commune Award for her short movie "Vervietude".

In 2008, Aura Trentin received the opportunity to develop her business and career in the U.S. and signed with a Los Angeles based agency. Once more, she proved she was the most sought after talents through her ability to convey powerful images in the area of print, television, billboards. Indeed Aura Trentin still demonstrates her unique talent to adapt to any look and any productions needs. Omar images captured her in 2008 with darker hair and High Fashion look, Veer sold hundreds of an editorial photo showing Aura as a sweet brunette woman, a famous Californian dental company holds her photo as the smile of their home page, Nick's Martini Lounge of Beverly Hills still features her as a beautiful Brazilian style, Passion Beauty Magazine featured several pages of her as a sparkling blonde, Iris Debelder Photography keeps hiring Aura for different themes as the photographer.

In August 2012, she was named spokesmodel for Milani Hair. Her partnership with the brand started in 2009 and Leyla Milani have known an international rising success using Aura Trentin's image. Latest Magazine Cover, Luxe Magnificence, November 2014.

Aura Trentin has already signed modeling contracts for years to come in the United States counting an extremely famous high end "Maison de Parfum".

While receiving extraordinary prominence both nationally and internationally; as well on screen; Aura Trentin is working on launching an online platform , WIM, Women In Move.

Born in Liege, Belgium, as Aurelie Hauglustaine and speaks French fluently. Her father is of German Jewish Nobility and her mother is of French and Dutch ancestry. Aura started acting and music at 6 and was on stage at 11. She graduated from the Conservatory at 18, and from College in Communication in Films and Arts, at 22 with the Highest Honor.

Aura started working as an international model at 16 as a student job. Highly acclaimed for her unique beauty, she was featured in over 20 international magazines. She has done a lot of magazine covers and received international awards. Aura's early ambitions towards drama brought her to film "Vervietude", done for a Belgian Campaign, and went on to win an award. In 2008, she was cast as a lead role in a Chapman University short film. That is when she moved in Los Angeles.

Meticulous in her craft , Aura enrolled the Beverly Hills Playhouse and perfected her knowledges in English. While adding experience in Hollywood , Aura received Belgian National and received article pages in several magazines and Newspapers. She also interviewed for "Star TV" in French speaking countries.

Receiving new international job opportunities, Aura moved in New York in May 2014. The outstanding artist, actress and model stays nevertheless bi-coastal. Her interests also in working with Canadian productions grew with her fantastic experience on Maps to the Stars (2014).

Mader

Mader's versatility and innovative style has allowed him to create a slew of evocative and memorable scores such as Ang Lee's ground- breaking films The Wedding Banquet and Eat Drink, Man Woman, each nominated for Academy Awards, with wins for the Golden Globe, Berlin, and honors at the Cannes Film Festival.

At the age of five, Mader was transfixed by his grandfather's 78 RPM gramophone renditions of popular 1920's French music, ranging from the songs of Frehel to the impressionistic sounds of Maurice Ravel. Later, the scores of Nino Rota, Morricone and Mancini proved to be new inspirations, and Mader's palette has given birth to a series of memorable melodies that have added the richest of colors to many films.

Following this worldwide success, Mader scored what would be an impressive lineup of high-profile independent films like Alexandre Rockwell's In The Soup (Grand Prize at Sundance Film Festival), Clockwatchers directed by Lisa Sprecher, starring Lisa Kudrow, Toni Colette and Parker Posey, and Wonsuk Chin's Too Tired To Die, starring Mira Sorvino.

Previous work includes Robert Greenwald's Steal This movie (the Abbie Hoffman story) starring Vincent D'Onofrio, Janeane Garofolo and Jeanne Tripplehorn, and more recently, Pete Smalls Is Dead starring Peter Dinklage, Tim Roth & Steve Buscemi, and the Sundance favorite Bhutto, a highly charged documentary about the life and assassination of Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.

Mader was introduced to the world of fil m music at age 19 when noted French film composer Michel Magne took him on as his assistant. Mader then met the eccentric avant-garde musician Hector Zazou who had recently become the caretaker of a crumbling nineteenth century castle on the outskirts of Marseilles, which he quickly turned into an artists' commune. Mader moved in and began working on a series of collaborations with Zazou and other artists. Eventually tired of communal life, he decided to relocate to New York City, passing through the London punk music scene on the way. Once in Manhattan, he formed his own group Band Apart and released two albums on Crammed Discs. He also recorded a solo cabaret album *Tangobidet, which netted him substantial critical acclaim, including a laudatory three page article in "Details" magazine.

The album *Cinemusica, released in January 2011, is a collection of some of Mader's favorite pieces from the vaults of his publishing and recording catalogues. These pieces incorporate material dating from his early days in New York to the choicest of his recent musical explorations in Los Angeles. Mader created an evocative Baroque score for the multimillion dollar Hallmark miniseries La Femme Musketeer starring Gerard Depardieu, Michael York, Nastassja Kinski, John Rhys-Davies. He also created a vibrant Latin score for The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit for director Stuart Gordon and Disney, starring Edward James Olmos, Joe Mantegna and Esai Morales.

Beyond film scoring, Mader continues a prolific career as a composer and producer. His new release '5 Legged Fish' is a groundbreaking album merging timeless melodies with tasteful electronics soundscapes. His unique and ever versatile voice keeps him at the fore front of the musical avant-garde scene.

Zach Bangma

Zach started making short films in his parent's basement at the age of 15 and was quickly bitten by the bug. After taking on the lighting and set design for his final two years of high school he often substituted films for papers in class. In college he was accepted into the theater department and offered a job working for the theater company and a mentor-ship with the designer learning design and practical building techniques. After living on a commune in Switzerland for a month he returned to switch schools and join the film department for a year then was drawn to Australia where he studied mostly in cinematography and art direction. Having learned lenses and lighting techniques Zach moved to Los Angeles to start a career in the art dept.

René Bazinet

René Bazinet is a German/Canadian stage and film actor. He is well known for being one of the most talented veteran clowns ever to have worked for Cirque du Soleil. In 2007 he became the clown act creator and acting consultant, for "Saltimbanco," which was their oldest major touring show, until discontinued after an over 20 year run - in 2013. He has carried on, in this capacity, with "Zarkana," a production Cirque du Soleil created in 2011.

René was born in what was still war torn Germany, a decade after WWII. His biological father was cabaret performer, Willy Degé. He moved to Canada, at the age of 16, shortly after his Mother, Ellen Fiener and Stepfather, Robert Bazinet, relocated there. Being transplanted proved to be somewhat of a culture shock for René, who did not yet speak English. Unable to communicate with fellow classmates easily, while endeavoring to learn his second language, he found solace in communing with nature. During this period René devoted much time to studying and imitating bird calls, which became part of his sound-effect repertoire.

Around the age of 20, René began his theatre art studies, at John Abbott College, in Canada, then started performing with the encouragement of one of his teachers, there. The undeniable talent he displayed compelled him to continue his studies in Mime and Clowning, with some of the most influential teachers and coaches, of the 20th century.

Most noteworthy among his instructors are Jacques Lecoq (1921-1999), along with legendary mime Étienne Decroux (1898-1991), who also taught the great mimes Jean-Louis Barrault (1910-1994) and Marcel Marceau (1923-2007). René learned the Feldenkrais Method, too, often referred to simply as 'Feldenkrais,' which is a somatic educational system designed by Moshé Feldenkrais (1904-1984). In time, René started to teach Feldenkrais, which aims to reduce pain or limitations in movement, to improve physical function, and to promote general well-being by increasing awareness of oneself and by expanding movement repertoire.

During the learning processes he paid his dues, for 9 years, as a street performer, in Paris and went on to do a number of cabaret and variety club stints, entertain in gala events, work for various theatre companies, etc., throughout Europe and Japan. Along the line, René developed a duo act with a clown partner, David Shiner, that they took on tour, before being hired as lead artist, by the prestigious Cirque du Soleil. For their original production, of "Saltimbanco," he developed and played (5) separate roles - for 4 years - throughout Northern America and in Japan, from 1992 - 1996.

René subsequently portrayed the romantic lead, opposite Julie Cox, in their only full length feature film, to date, "Alegria: An Enchanting Fable," or "Alegria Le Film," based on the tent show "Alegria." He has, since, reprised his roles in "Saltimbanco," periodically, at London's - Royal Albert Hall and in Brazil's - Rio de Janeiro. Over the years he has worked extensively for other well known circus companies such as Roncalli and Salto Natale.

René is multilingual, having a facility for languages. He speaks German, English, French and Italian fluently. Continuing to hone his craft, he is considered to be one of the world's top clowns. In 1999 the Canadian government's Council of Arts commissioned him to contribute to their circus art series of instructional books. René's particular edition was entitled "Le Clown" and includes numerous photos along with comprehensive directives, on specific techniques, in the art of clowning. Having enjoyed a career spanning over 30 years, René is widely recognized not only as a supreme clown but a gifted film actor, clown coach and director, as well.

He is also a world renowned mime, with a particularly graceful and fluid style, who has served as mentor and inspiration to many other mimes, clowns and stage actors. His long time artistic partner David Shiner, who is also a veteran performer for Cirque du Soleil, as well as one of their show creators and mentors, continues to tour Europe intermittently, with René, in the two-man show they first created back in the 1980s.

Cheng Ah

Ah Cheng, Chinese writer and painter. His father, the film critic Zhong Dianfei, was forced by the Communist government to sell his library of Chinese and Western classics, which Ah Cheng secretly read before delivering them to the book dealer. During the Cultural Revolution, he was sent to work on commune farms in Shanxi, Inner Mongolia, and Yunnan. After returning to Beijing in the late 1970s he gained recognition for his drawings, stories, essays, and film scripts. In the mid-1980s he was a prominent advocate of "seeking roots" literature, a movement by young writers to reestablish their cultural roots, which had been lost during the social upheavals of the previous two decades. He is best known for his series of "king" novellas.

Campbell Dalglish

Founding director of D'Arc Productions, and an award winning playwright, screenwriter and director, Campbell Dalglish is a tenured professor in the film program at City College of New York. He is also a Film Commissioner for Suffolk County on Long Island. and President of The Plaza Media Arts Center in Patchogue, New York. As a playwright Dalglish won several awards ("The List," "Blue Mass"). As a filmmaker he has produced segments for The New Morning Show (Faith and Value Media/Hallmark Channel 2008) five of them dealing with Native American themes on Indian Reservations. His short narrative film "Dance of the Quantum Cats" won over a dozen international awards and was selected by CINE to represent USA at the 12th International Film Festival of Peace, Hiroshima, Japan. It was broadcast on PBS/CPTV as part of a series on emerging directors. Dalglish developed a technique of making films from the perspectives of people living in marginal communities by visiting, interviewing and conducting interactive improvisations with his subjects. The results have been "A Hard Way Out" (1996 Hartford gangs), "The Community Room" (1992 Jericho Homeless Shelter), and "The Shooting Gallery" (1988 Bridgeport Prison). Together with his partner Catherine Oberg, he co-produced with Invisible Dog Inc., an environmental TV pilot "Eco Action" (2000). In 2016 he wrote, directed and produced the short "Road Kill." He is currently in post-production on a feature documentary, "Spirit Roads: Surviving Genocide" about being American Indian in Oklahoma, and writing a TV episode "The Commune." Dalglish is a graduate of the Yale School of Drama.

Paul America

Paul Johnson, a strapping blonde young man from New Jersey, was reportedly discovered in mid-1965 by theatrical producer Lester Persky at the discotheque Ondine and brought to the attention of Andy Warhol at Warhol's "Factory" (work-living space).

According to Warhol, "Paul was unbelievably good-looking - like a comic-strip drawing of Mr. America, clean-cut, handsome, very symmetrical. He seemed to be exactly six feet tall and weigh some nice round number." He immediately moved into The Factory and became a part of the Warhol family of superstars, factotums and hangers-on, his contributions classed mostly in the latter category. Warhol crowned him "Paul America," likely because of his having lived at the funky America Hotel on West 46th St.

America wound up living at The Factory from 1965 to 1968, where Warhol only talked to him through intermediaries (even in his presence) as he believed Johnson to be a "fool." According to Warhol superstar Ondine, "Paul America was everybody's lover.... He was the personification of total sexual satisfaction. Without a brain in his head. Just beautifully vapid. He was a wonderful creature. Anybody who wanted anything from Paul could get it. He was there to satisfy. And he did."

The handsome youth was cast in the starring role of Warhol's 1965 film "My Hustler," his most famous role. A heavy user of LSD, America claimed that he didn't even remember the shoot, and was barely conscious that he was in a movie. The anti-romantic film, which consists of two 33-minute long takes (the length of a 1,200-ft. reel of 16-mm film, which Warhol, the cameraman/director, exposed continuously) is considered a landmark of gay cinema and ranks, with his "Chelsea Girls," as the most financially successful of Warhol's early narrative films. The film made America a gay icon. He appeared in two unreleased Warhol sequels, ('My Hustler: In Apartment' and 'My Hustler: Ingrid'), as well as Dan Williams' silent film 'Harold Stevenson.'

America and Edie Sedgwick -- another Factory regular -- became lovers, united in their common lust for drugs, and they lived together for a brief time at New York's Chelsea Hotel. They indulged heavily in speed as classic co-dependents. According to Sedgwick, "I'm not sure what attracted me to him unless it was a kind of admiration brought about by the drugs which I was so heavily inundated by."

However, while they were together, America kept Sedgwick from being exploited. Their relationship was an on-again/off-again affair, as America continually left New York for the country (his brother owned a farm in Indiana). Eventually, friction over control issues forced them apart.

Years later, America appeared with Sedgwick in the long-gestated film "Ciao Manhattan," his second and last film role. In the movie, he played a drug dealer ingeniously named "Paul America." In a scene in which he chauffeured a character to the Pan Am building, America drove off the set and vanished. The filmmakers finally found him in a Michigan jail as he had been busted driving back to his brother's farm in Indiana. The filmmakers had to finish filming his scenes in jail.

America eventually became a violent sociopath, and was banished from the Warhol fold for good. America and a cohort robbed art curator Henry Geldzahler's apartment, and stole Warhol alumnus Billy Name's collection of Warhol paintings in 1977. Geldzahler reported that by the early 1980s, America "was a wasted creature after they [Warhol's crowd] had finished with him. They finally washed their hands of him and let him float away. He's a poor burned-out thing living in a commune in Indiana and trying to pull himself together."

He was killed by a car in Ormond Beach, Florida in 1982.

Caroline Frewin

Caroline Frewin is a British actress from Birmingham who started her career on stage in various touring theatre productions. As well as numerous stage productions, she has appeared in commercials, radio drama series and various films including the award-winning 'Land Gold Women' (Best English film, National Film Awards, India), 'Baby Blues' and the soon to be released Brit-flick horror 'Porcelain Presence'. She has recently been filming the short horror, 'I Do Harm' in which she plays the lead, Lorien, returning to a dilapidated commune where secrets of her past are about to purge.

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