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Jim Morrison (1943-1971)

 

  1. Tom Baker, I, A Man, 1967.       Morrison agreed to co-star with Nico (of the Velvet Underground band) in an Andy Warhol movie called Fuck. Jim’s manager went bananas and they sent a pal to to take the role. The resulting boredom was re-named and Fuck was reserved for a ’68 Factory movie with Warhol superstars Viva and Louis Waldon, later known as Blue Movie. Also in this parody of Mac Ahlberg’s 1965 Danish-Swedish erotica, I, A Woman, was a certain Valerie Solanis, the founder of SCUM, Society for Cutting Up Men, who shot Warhol close to death on June 3, 1968. He recovered; she spent three years in an Institute for the Criminally Insane, dying in obscurity in 1988. PS from Chicago critic Roger Ebert: “Warhol is not making movies. [This] is not a movie. It is… a very long and pointless home movie… You can’t understand most of the dialogue, which is apparently the idea and may even be an act of mercy.”
  2. Rod Taylor, The Deadly Trackers, 1972.      Or, Riata (Spanish for lariat) when maverick auteur Samuel Fuller was making it for Warners. Sam and studio fell out... Fuller first wanted Mick Jagger as the bank robbing killer in this retribution parable: I Shot Jesse James Meets Underworld USA.   Morrison was keen.  Sammy, his father figure, was not.  His refusal broke up a beautiful friendship. Of Jagger, the Warner suits said: “Who’d go see that guy in a movie?”  Rather more than paid to see Taylor and sheriff Richard Harris sleepwalking in the West for Fuller’s replacement Barry Shear - from 65 TV shows. “They COMPLETELY LOBOTOMISED my story,” yelled Sam in his usual CAPITALS, “yet left myname on that PIECE OF GARBAGE as a co-writer.”
  3. Charlie Sheen,  Platoon, 1986.   Keanu Reeves (then totally unknown), Kyle MacLachlan and Jim Morrison were on parade for Chris in the only Vietnam war movie made by a Vietnam war veteran.  Auteur Oliver Stone grunted through eight months  of ’Nam combat (twice wounded) during 1967-1968  This then, was as  viscerallyclose to the real thing as possible, feasible or desirable - ie, not John Wayne’s spurious propaganda, Green Berets, 1967. As Chicago critic  Roger Ebert noted: “It does not make war look like fun.”  Stone had sent his 1971  original script to Morrison and it was found on him when he was discovered dead in Paris. He was cleaning up his act at then time, losing weight,  shaving, turning sober - as if pereparing for the film. Stone went on to make a Morrison biopioc, The Doors, 1990, with another possible Chris, Kyle MacLachlan, as keyboardist Ray Manzarek.  Morrison (who wanted to be a film director) was played (and sung) by Val Kilmer, who’d been up for Sergeant Ellias in the ’Nam film.

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