B-movie king Roger Corman: ‘Death Race isn’t an essay on violence – it’s an action comedy’

With the release of Death Race 2050, a remake of his cult classic, the veteran director talks about the film’s political undertones – and how he became the king of trash

To be considered a genius, you need only one great idea. For Moses, it was parting the Red Sea, then closing it with Pharaoh’s army still inside. Bach had counterpoint. And Lady Godiva did that thing with the horse.

Six decades ago, Roger Corman got a really great idea. Realising that young people were being ignored by Hollywood, he began making tons of super-low-budget films about vampires, monsters, mutants, ghosts and moody bikers. The films had names such as Swamp Women, She Gods of Shark Reef, The Pit and the Pendulum, The Fast and the Furious. This was preferable to films with names such as That Touch of Mink and Father Goose.

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