The Kid Stays In The Picture
Script - Dialogue Transcript
Voila! Finally, the The Kid Stays In The Picture
script is here for all you quotes spouting fans of the movie about Robert
Evans. This script is a transcript that was painstakingly
transcribed using the screenplay and/or viewings of The Kid Stays In The Picture. I know, I know, I still need to get the cast names in there and I'll be eternally
tweaking it, so if you have any corrections, feel free to
drop me a line. You won't
hurt my feelings. Honest.
The Los Angeles Times once said...... that never in the history of Hollywood hassuch glamour and talent sat under one tree.Dr. Kissinger is here andthere's no accident.There's more oil on Bob Evans...
Take him home. Take him home!Just get him the hell out of here!These past years as chief ofproduction at Paramount Pictures...... I've been lucky, or fortunate enough tobe involved with such unique pictures...... as Rosemary's Baby, True Grit,
Love Story, The Godfather...
How did you get discoveredfor the movies?Well, I got discovered by jumpinginto a swimming pool.But I was an actor for many yearsas a kid before that.I was at the Beverly Hills Hotel pool.I was a businessman at the time.
- What was your business?
- I was partners in Evan Picone.We made women's pants.In other words, I was in women's pants.We actually started the fadof women wearing slacks.I'll never forget it, because...
It was the fall of .
I flew out to Los Angeles
to set up Evan Picone boutiques.
One afternoon, I decided
to play hooky...
...sit by the pool and get some
sun at the Beverly Hills Hotel.
Suddenly a woman approached. "Excuse
me, young man, are you an actor?"
Yeah, I was, a long time ago.
It was Norma Shearer.
Norma Shearer, at the time,
was one of the few remaining icons...
...of Hollywood aristocracy.
A petite blond in a striped, short robe.
"Pardon me for being curious, young man,
but why are you always on the phone?"
Gotta pay my bills.
"You're not a bookmaker, are you?"
No, I'm not a bookmaker.
Then she changed the
entire course of my life.
"Would you like to play my deceased
husband, Irving Thalberg, in a film?"
I looked at her. Looked at her again. I
didn't know what she was talking about.
"They're making a film at Universal
called Man of a Thousand Faces.
My friend Jimmy Cagney
is playing Lon Chaney.
Irving discovered him and made
him the biggest star in silent film.
He was only at the time. He was
even too young to sign the checks.
But not too young to run a studio."
I'm thinking to myself, wow,
this can't be happening to me.
Miss Shearer, it would be
an honor. Why not?
Cagney is the one guy
I've always wanted to meet.
Two hours later, I'm on a
sound stage at Universal.
Here I am, like out of a dream,
I'm testing opposite Jimmy Cagney.
Mind if I come in a minute?
I know I don't look dressed for the barricades,
but I've come from a revolution.
The premiere of The Jazz Singer. Lon,
you should've seen that audience.
When Jolson's voice came
from the screen...
...I could hear the bells tolling
for silent pictures.
You haven't heard a word I said.
- I'm sorry, Irving. What were you saying?
- Nothing much.
Just trying to tell you
about a modern miracle.
Pictures that not only move,
Lon, but they speak.
Oh, yeah, sure. Talking pictures.
It's the horse and the automobile
all over again. No use fighting it.
When it was over, Cagney gave me a
quick look, "You did good, kid."
Forty-eight hours later, I made every
newspaper around the country.
"Big splash: New York businessman dives
into pool and comes out movie star."
Was I lucky? I think so.
If I had stayed just an actor, Norma
never would've given me a second look.
What caught her eye was a young
go-getter, sure about himself. Persuasive.
A subliminal reminder of the man who
was once her mentor and her husband.
It's the old story, though.
Luck doesn't happen by mistake.
Rather, luck is when opportunity
As soon as the picture wrapped,
I flew back to the Big Apple.
Evan Picone was on fire...
...the showroom packed with them leggy
ladies prancing in their patrician pants.
It was turn-on plus. My brother Charles had
built the top fashion company of its time.
Me? I was lucky to be part of it...
...never having a second thought
about returning to La La Land.
Why should I?
In New York, I was a celebrity.
From debutante, to starlet, to model.
There I was on their most-wanted list.
Was I enjoying it? You bet your ass I was.
One night, my brother and I took
a few femme fatales to El Morocco.
Me? I didn't feel like conversation,
so I hit the dance floor.
Well, that night someone had eyes
for me, and it wasn't her.
It was Darryl Zanuck, head
honcho of th Century Fox.
He had no idea who I was.
But just looking at me, he thought:
That kid's right to play the
matador opposite Ava Gardner.
After years and years of knocking
on doors, being turned down...
...here I am, discovered to star
in two pictures within six months.
That's what you call incident, and that's
what's also known as sense of discovery.
Thank God, I was the one discovered.
I was sent down to Mexico
to study to be a bullfighter.
Mind you, I have never once
seen a bull in my life.
I worked my ass off for three months.
Wearing a rubber girdle each day, so I'd
lose weight around my midsection.
There was one big problem.
No one wanted me in the picture.
Ernest Hemingway was furious they'd
pick a guy out of a nightclub...
...to play Pedro Romero,
who in the true-life story was him.
A telegram goes out to
Darryl Zanuck. It reads:
"With Robert Evans playing Pedro Romero,
The Sun Also Rises will be a disaster.
Signed, Ernest Hemingway,
...Ava Gardner, Eddie Albert."
The only one who refused to sign it
was Errol Flynn. He laughed.
I know I'm gonna get fired.
But that gave me the resolve.
I said, fuck them. And, you know,
when I knew that telegram went out...
...I became Pedro Romero in one week.
Zanuck arrives in Morelia, Mexico,
and I'm summoned to the bullring...
...to do my quites and
veronicas in front of him.
I walk into the bullring, take off
my hat, throw it to him. For you.
And then I start going through
my various things.
I feel like an idiot.
I know I'm gonna get fired.
Suddenly, Zanuck stands up, all
' " of him, picks up a bullhorn:
"The kid stays in the picture. And
anybody who doesn't like it can quit."
Puts the bullhorn down, and walks out.
Also, it was then that I realized
that's what Evans wants to be.
Not some actor shitting in his
pants, waiting to get a role.
But the guy who can say,
"The kid stays in the picture."
Bob Evans is a -year-old New Yorker
who is in the enviable position...
...of pursuing two
careers on two coasts.
Here in the East, Bob Evans
devotes his time and energy...
...to being a vice president of the
Evan Picone sportswear firm.
On the West Coast, Bob Evans devotes his
time and energy to being a movie star.
And, at last reports,
he's doing pretty well at both.
- Evening, Bob.
- Good evening, Ed.
- How are you?
- Very fine.
Now you're getting established
and recognized as a movie star...
...how long do you think
you'll hold out as a bachelor?
Just introduce me to the right girl, Ed,
and I can end my bachelorhood right here.
With all the hullabaloo and excitement
about the new Valentino...
...I wasn't getting the parts I wanted. There
were half a dozen parts offered to me.
I was looking for bigger things.
One day, my agent calls,
"Bob, I'm calling with good news. Fox is
remaking Kiss of Death into a Western...
...and we've got you up for the Widmark
part. It made him a star overnight."
Finally, I got my first title role.
- He's a kooky killer.The most diabolical horrorthat ever roamed the earth.
The Fiend Who Walked the West.
He'll cut out your heart or break yourneck, and laugh while he's doing it.
My acting career was over and out.
It was my last appearance
on the silver screen.
At decade's end, I was sure of one thing.
I was a half-assed actor, and I knew it.
I knew I'd never become the next
...maybe the next Troy Donahue.
But do you know who I really wanted
to become? The next Darryl Zanuck.
That was my goal for the ' s.
And I went for it all the way.
Sounds easy, doesn't it?
Next to winning the Olympics, I don't
think there's a more difficult thing...
...than a pretty-boy actor transforming
himself into producer...
...especially in those days.
I realized that I had to own something
that nobody else could get.
I met a guy named George Weiser
who worked for Publishers Weekly.
He moonlighted for me
for about $ a week.
He comes to me and says, "I just finished
a book. It's called The Detective."
This is one hot book. I read it,
put $ down on it as an option...
...and go see David Brown,
a pal from th Century Fox...
...who's a top producer there. I say,
David, I think I have the next big book.
He reads it. In hours, he says, "Bob,
we're in business." David, not so quick.
I wanna know what kind
of business we're in.
Now, these are my conditions.
I want a full spread of offices.
I want a three-picture deal.
To make a very long story short,
I get everything I ask for.
They would've bought me
out for half a million.
But I wanted my foot in the door,
and I got it in the door, but good.
I learned a lot from that. When you
own the property, you're king.
Without it, you're a peon.
If the euphemism, "You live by
the press, and die by the press"...
...ever fit anyone, it fit me.
Who would've thought a journalist would
change the entire course of my life...
...and also my career?
On reflection, I don't know if
I should love him or hate him.
Peter Bart, West Coast correspondent
for The New York Times...
...wanted to write a story about me
in the Arts and Leisure section.
Is this a joke, Peter? Come on.
He said, "This is not a joke.
What's interesting about you,
and why you're worth writing about...
...is you're beating these
big shots at their own game.
You know, you could become the guy
you played, the next Thalberg."
That's just what I want the audience
to see, Mr. Chaney...
...the soul of a man that
God made different.
If I was smart, I should have
retired after Peter's article.
Instead, Greg Bautzer, the power
broker of the town, calls.
"Pack. You're going to New York."
I can't, Greg, I got plans.
"Break them. Charlie Bluhdorn bought
Paramount and wants to meet you.
He read the article about you in
Sunday's New York Times.
He's a doer, Bob. Not a talker.
Now pack your bags."
And pack them I did.
Within five minutes after meeting Charlie
Bluhdorn, I know this is no kibitzer.
Before I finished trying to answer one
question, he was asking me more.
With him was a guy named Marty Davis.
He was responsible for the
conglomerate Gulf and Western.
Buying this aging mountain
they call Paramount.
There were eight major studios
at the time.
Paramount? It was ninth.
Bluhdorn bought this giant at bargain
basement prices, the only way he knew how.
Everybody thought he was nuts to get
in a business he knew nothing about...
...much less a business
as crazy as show business.
But, guys, I got a deal at th.
"Get out of it.
You'll be running Paramount in
three months. Is that right, Marty?"
Davis gives me a look.
"If you're gonna run Paramount, you
better be tougher than you seem."
Did I get the message? You bet.
Then Bluhdorn blasted my other ear:
"Go by the seat of your pants.
Make pictures people wanna see.
I wanna see tears, laughs. I want pretty
girls in the pictures, beautiful girls.
Pictures people in Kansas City want to see.
That's all, Evans.
What else do we have to go over?"
Being the head of production ofa studio such as Paramount...... and I'm sure you're aware of it,involves a tremendous responsibility.You are dealing with millions of dollars.
They had a lot of great names for me.
"Bluhdorn's Folly" by The New York Times.
Another was "Bluhdorn's Blow Job" by
Hollywood Close-up. Good feeling, huh?
There was, to put it mildly...
...a great deal of skepticism
from people in the industry.
After all, where does an ex-actor, and a
bad one at that, come off running a studio?
From the day I arrived, the rumor mill
had me packing my bags.
Time magazine ran a story
saying my firing was imminent.
Friends, columnists, agents, all let me know
I wouldn't be there for Christmas.
Then it happened. Front page of Variety:
"Evans tenure over by end of month."
I called Charles Bluhdorn, chairman of
Gulf and Western, who bought Paramount.
He was in Spain. I got him out of a board
of directors' meeting in Madrid and said:
Charles, there's a story in Variety that
I'm gonna get fired. If it's true, tell me.
- Tell me if it's true.
- I'll pick up my laundry.
I'm ready to go. He says,
"Let me tell you something.
When you're getting fired, I'll let
you know. Stop reading gossip.
As long as I own Paramount, you'll be
where you are. Relax and do your job."
And he hung the phone up.
My first move was to hire Peter Bart
as my right-hand man.
He's not Hollywood. He doesn't read
synopses, he reads the entire text.
He can read six books over a weekend.
I'm hard-pressed to finish one in six.
But even more important, it was his
article that got me into this mess.
The two of us caucused
in Palm Springs for a full week.
Strategizing how an actor and a journalist
could turn a white elephant into a contender.
Patience was not a quality Bluhdorn or
Davis had, and the clock was ticking.
With the little experience we had,
we knew one thing: The property is the star.
Let's go back to basics, Peter.
You can have stars up the ass...
...but if it's not on the page,
it's not on the screen.
It's no mistake Paramount's
been in ninth place for five years.
It's time to pick up new dice.
Now let's try and do it.
Between Peter and myself, we went
through dozens of scripts, maybe hundreds.
Nothing clicked. It all felt tired.
There was nothing fresh about it.
And we were looking
for the unexpected.
Something that sounded new and
what we were gonna be about.
Then one day, Bill Castle,
the veteran producer...
...walked into my office with a manuscript
he had optioned, tucked under his arm.
It was Rosemary's Baby. And I loved it.
There was one problem:
Castle insisted on directing it.
I only had one director in mind for it.
I saw brilliance in his little films.
It was the little Polack himself,
Not a little Polack. The biggest Polack
and one of the biggest men I've ever met.
The films I saw were Knife in the Water,Repulsion, Cul-de-sac, all offbeat thrillers.
Roman was a big cinema star over
in Europe, as well as director...
...and he'd just finished his first
Hollywood film. Get this title:
The Fearless Vampire Killers...... or: Pardon Me, But YourTeeth Are in My Neck.
Though no one wanted him in America,
he didn't care. He was a star in Europe.
Where do I get him? How do
I get to him? He's an avid skier.
I lured him to America, thinking
he was gonna direct Downhill Racer.
Polanski walks in.
This is some character!
Within five minutes, this Polack's
acting out crazy stories.
They're somewhere between
Shakespeare and theater of the absurd.
Maybe that's why we clicked so well.
We both come out of the same
school of drama, the drama of life.
I didn't wanna bullshit him.
Roman, will you read this?
I shoved the galleys of Rosemary'sBaby across the desk at him.
"Is this about skiing?"
Read it, Polack.
If you don't like it, your next ski trip is on
me, anywhere you wanna go in the world.
A gamble? Sure.
It paid off. Roman loved it.
But then the fights began.
You know, fighting is healthy.
If everyone has too much reverence for
each other, or the material...
Check it out and think about it.
Invariably, it turns out underwhelming.
By the end of the first week's shooting,
Roman was a week behind schedule.
Everyone from Bluhdorn to Bill Castle
wanted me to throw him off the picture.
Roman's dailies were weird. They
touched off an ominous sense of fright.
One I'd never seen in film before.
At the same time, Bill Castle
was pressing the right buttons...
...getting the New York brass unnerved on
our Polish discovery, my Polish discovery.
We're days into shooting, and
Roman was five days behind schedule.
"Fire the Polack," were the words
from New York. Fire him? Fuck you.
He goes, I go.
For a moment, I thought I'd have
to pay my own plane fare back.
I grabbed Roman aside.
Listen to me carefully, Roman.
My ass ain't on the line.
My ass is out the door, and so are you.
Now pick up the fucking pace
or we'll both end up in Warsaw.
Bluhdorn and company weren't the
only ones screaming about Roman.
Another power entered the scene.
My secretary comes in
with an urgent message:
"Frank Sinatra's on the horn. He must
speak with you." I picked the phone up.
"I'm pulling Mia from your picture, Evans,
if she ain't finished by November .
She's starting in my picture
on the . Got it straight?"
His picture was The Detective, the
project that launched my producing career.
Now it was about to sink it.
Frank, you don't understand. We're
not gonna be finished till mid-February.
"Then she's quitting.
Don't fuck around with me.
We go back too far. She's my old lady,
she'll do as I tell her."
Before I could say anything,
he hangs the phone up.
Well, Frank didn't bark, he bit.
Bit Mia pretty good.
"Stay in Rosemary's Baby, you go back
to Mia Farrow. Forget the name Sinatra!"
Suddenly this little girl hysterically
runs into my office.
"I love him, Bob. I love him so.
I don't wanna lose Frank.
I'm gonna have to leave the movie."
Mia, if you walk out in the middle of
this film, you'll never work again.
"I don't care, I don't care.
I just love Frank."
Well, if ever my experience with dames
came in handy, I mean actress dames...
...this was the moment.
I knew what makes the head of an actress
tick, and I finally found its purpose.
Come with me, Mia,
I wanna show you something.
We walked into the executive
...and I showed her a full hour of
Rosemary's Baby cut together.
Dr. Hill? Dr. Hill, there's a plot.
I know that sounds crazy, and you're
thinking, "This poor girl has flipped."
But I haven't flipped, Dr. Hill.
I swear by all the saints, I haven't.
Mia, you're brilliant. I never
thought you had it in you.
It'll shock them all.
I want you to know something. You're a
shoo-in to win the Academy Award.
Suddenly her tears were gone.
Her face lights up.
"Do you think so?" The one thing I'm not
is prone to exaggerate. You're a shoo-in.
I mean a shoo-in, kid. "Sinatra who?"
Suddenly, a smile.
She didn't walk off the film. But Frank
did serve her divorce papers on the set...
...delivered by Mickey Rudin, his attorney.
Wow, it's strange. Women recover real
quick. It may have taken her a full week.
Then the only thing she wanted was that
Rosemary's Baby out-gross The Detective.
You want to know about actresses?
Mia's one satisfaction would be that the
pictures would open on the same day.
And I arranged that.
The Detective opened to a
real good box office.
But Rosemary's Baby was
the smash hit of the summer.
Overnight, Mia was a full-fledged star.
She had one request I couldn't fill:
Take a double-page ad out in the
Daily Variety and Hollywood Reporter.
On one side, in bold numbers,
the theater grosses of Rosemary's Baby.
On the other, the theater
grosses of The Detective.
Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.
A decade before, Norma Shearer
took me for a short walk.
Within minutes of the Beverly Hills
Hotel, we entered a hidden oasis.
It is a world away from Beverly Hills.
It is protected by -foot-tall
Greta Garbo used to hide away there
whenever she came into town.
I'd never forgotten the day I was there.
God, it must have been
times I thought:
One day, I could own that house.
God, I'd love to live there.
The grounds, the trees, the acreage,
the towering eucalyptus...
...thousands of roses. Everything is
quiet and secret behind walls.
Was it for sale? No. But in L.A.,
there's nothing that isn't.
For buckaroos, the place
of my dreams was now mine.
In the mid-to-late ' s, movie
attendance was spiraling south.
Outside of Paramount, a
cultural revolution was taking place.
The brass at the studios didn't
know who to cater movies to.
The old guard who wanted to see their
aging movie stars in lavish productions...
...or the youth, who no one
seemed to understand.
In the same year alone,
Paramount released Medium Cool...
...a film catering to
the so-called youth market.
And Paint Your Wagon,
a film that catered to no one.
We were losing money every year
on big, extravagant productions.
The board of directors were nervous.
We needed a picture to unite audiences.
Like all good films, it needed
to start with a script.
Well, we found it. Or should I say,
Miss MacGraw found it.
A simple little film about
a boy and a girl falling in love.
It was Love Story.
I set up a lunch date with Love Story's
mentor and star, Miss MacGraw.
Damn it, by the time dessert was served,
I would've made the phone book with her.
Do you think she got to me? I can tell
you this, I sure in hell didn't get to her.
She kept on digging into me.
Oh, and she was loving it.
She keeps on interjecting, all during
the lunch, how much in love she was.
Then she gives me her last zinger.
"Peter and I are getting married in the fall.
We plan to spend October in Venice.
Ever been there?" Nope.
"Then wait. Only go there
when you're madly in love."
That was it for me. I grabbed her arm.
Never plan, kid. Planning's for the poor.
If anything goes wrong between you and
Blondie between now and post time...
...take my number.
I'm seven digits away.
Hate to admit it, but she never called.
In the spring of holding LoveStory sure as hell wasn't holding aces.
I couldn't even find a
fucking director to do it.
You know what my batting average was?
A thousand. Everyone turned it down.
Suddenly, a minor miracle.
I get a director. Arthur Hiller.
He's willing to direct my
angel with a very dirty face.
Well, when you get a first bite,
there's no way you're gonna let it go.
It was Wednesday night. Suddenly, Miss
Snotnose remembers my seven digits.
This was one angry broad.
I say angry with a capital A.
"The audacity you have, Mr. Evans, to
sign a director I've never heard of...
...without consulting me. It's my property.
I'm doing the picture for slave wages.
I'm living up to my option agreement.
Have you forgotten the word 'courtesy'?"
I thought I was hyperventilating.
Ali, why don't you come out to L.A.
Tomorrow? Take a look at Hiller's film.
If you don't like it, we'll get someone
else. Trust me. I think you'll enjoy it.
The next night at I pick up Snotnose
MacGraw in the Beverly Hills Hotel.
Did it bug me? You bet, needing
this starlet's nod of approval.
I hoped she wouldn't like Hiller so I could
tell her she was a one-way ticket east.
That her flick's over and out. Cancelled.
At least I'd get my nuts off.
I'm saying to myself, Miss Charming
ain't gonna get to me tonight.
I walked her through my front
doors, out and around my pool...
...towards my projection room. What I was
thinking didn't work the way I thought.
She looks up to me, with her
crooked tooth and all, and says:
"I feel like I'm walking through
my own private park in Paris."
Prepared for her bullshit,
it hardly made a ripple.
Arthur Hiller's audition was ready to roll.
It never did. The screen never came down.
Yeah, but Miss Flower Child Snotnose
soon got wet, very wet...
...jumping into the egg-shaped pool totally
clothed, from her shoes to her headband.
Me? I'm laughing on the inside,
but thinking, for a bohemian...
...she sure as hell became
comfortable very quickly.
Behind the so-called Beverly Hills gates,
with rose bushes...
...surrounded by gardenias, daisies,
you name it.
She called herself a flower child.
And now the flowers were hers.
October th, a Friday morning.
Miss Snotnose is on her way
to becoming Mrs. Evans.
Both of us climb
into our Mercedes two-seater...
...and head for the town hall in Riverside.
Afterward, we uncorked one magnum
of Dom after the other.
Where? On the courthouse lawn.
And did we get loaded!
We had a long two-day honeymoon
in Palm Springs.
I held Ali tight in my arms.
"I love you, Evans. I love you.
Forever, Evans. Forever."
I whispered back, forever, darling.
"And promise me, never leave me."
I promise you, baby, I won't.
Not even for two weeks.
Not for one, kid.
"I'm a hot lady, Evans."
I hugged her, I kissed her.
Never change, baby. Never change.
"And never let anything get between us,
I forgot my key.
Jenny, I'm sorry.
Love means never having
to say you're sorry.
"Cut!" says Hiller.
"That's it. We've got it."
You did a good job, Ali.
You had me in tears.
She runs over to me,
smothers me with kisses.
"Evans, did you really like it?
The tears, they were for you."
My eyes start to swell.
I actually start crying.
Crying about happiness, and feeling that
I'm the luckiest guy in the whole world.
Camelot was ours.
Well, at least I thought it was.
"Evans, there's a big problem. The board
of directors, they want me out of Paramount.
They can't afford it anymore.
It's turning a cash flow into a cash drought.
They've had it. They want me out too,
out of show business.
Get back to what I do best.
Making money, not movies."
Charlie was not prone to making
practical jokes, and this was no joke.
Fuck them, Charlie.
Stall them if you can.
With your eyes closed, you can buy
another quarter. I know you can.
Give us one more shot at the table.
You can do it.
"The board's already decided.
They called an emergency meeting
a week from tomorrow.
The studio will be closed
by the end of next week."
Damn it. This couldn't be happening to me.
And we were just on a roll.
Then it hit me.
Give me a half-hour, Charlie,
with the board.
Just one half-hour, that's all I need.
"Evans, the one person they don't
wanna see is you. Are you crazy, Evans?"
Yeah. But crazy good, Charlie.
I've got one ace in my hand:
And I'm gonna build a hand around it.
"All right, Evans. You got a half-hour.
That's all, just a half-hour.
Be in New York next Monday
at the board meeting.
And buy a one-way ticket,
and don't be late."
Peter Bart asked Mike Nichols
for an afternoon...
...to film a reel for his boss
to deliver to the board of directors...
...of Gulf and Western.
Mike directed me in, I'm sure,
the best performance of my life.
Where were you, Mike, when I needed
you years ago, when I was an actor?
That Sunday at p.m.,
I caught the redeye into New York.
No luggage, but a can
of film under my arm.
This was our one and only chance.
If the film didn't play, the board would
shut down the studio, effective immediately.
As I walked into the Gulf
and Western building...
...Bluhdorn handed me
my walking papers.
"Well, Evans, at least we tried."
I pushed him away.
Hold these for another minutes,
will you, Charlie?
I walked into the boardroom,
a -to- shot.
Before me sat
of America's finest non-smilers.
Gentlemen, I apologize
for not being better dressed.
When you've got
a one-way ticket and no hotel...
...it ain't that easy to keep
up with the style of the room.
No laugh. Not a crack.
Not even a white of a tooth in sight.
Quickly, I stepped out of the room...
...and handed the projectionist
My name is Robert Evans...
...and I'm senior vice president
of Paramount Pictures.
By the way,
this is not my office.
We tried to shoot this scene
in my office.
We brought the cameras up, but my
office is too small to get the cameras in.
I came down to the studio to borrow
a set from The Young Lawyers...
...and that's where we are now.
As a matter of fact, I don't even
have offices at the studio anymore.
Last year, we packed up our gear,
cut down our staff...
...tightened our belts, moved into small
quarters at little offices in Beverly Hills.
They're good enough for us.
These past few years
have been rough for Hollywood.
We've made a lot of mistakes.
Some people have learned from them
and some people haven't. We have.
Money we spend is not gonna
be through extravagances.
It's gonna be on the screen.
And speaking of the screen, I think
maybe that's the reason we're here today.
I'd like to have the opportunity of showing
you some of our product for .
Right now, we're approaching Christmas.
And Paramount's Christmas gift
to the world is Love Story.
I think Love Story is gonna start
a new trend in movies.
A trend towards the romantic,
Towards telling a story about how
it feels, rather than where it's at.
I think Love Story is going to bring the
people back into the theater in droves.
I could go on for an hour...
...and tell you about or projects
in various stages...
...and bore you with it, so I won't.
But I wanna bring up one project.
And that's The Godfather.
I bring it up for several reasons.
One, that it's starting production next month.
Two, that it's gonna be
our next Christmas' picture.
And three, to bring up the similarity
between The Godfather and Love Story...
...which are the two biggest books
of the last decade.
Paramount owns them both.
But Paramount has more than
just owning them both.
We didn't sit back in our plush
chairs and write a check...
...for a million dollars for the books,
which happens so often in our industry.
We developed both of these books.
If it weren't for Paramount,
Love Story would never have been written...
...The Godfather would
never have been written.
We were in there in the beginning,
spurring the writers on...
...working closely with them to make
these books the bestsellers they are...
...and the great movies
they're going to be.
We at Paramount don't look at ourselves
as passive backers of film.
We look at ourselves as
a creative force unto ourself.
And that is why Paramount is going to be
paramount in the industry in the ' s.
I promise you that.
Ten minutes later, Bluhdorn walked in.
"Well, I'm fired, huh?
You're a bigger fraud than I thought.
You're some showman, Evans.
You really pulled the wool over their eyes."
No kiss on the lips, but a Bluhdorn hug.
And that's more than an engagement ring.
It was the gold band itself.
Then in typical Bluhdorn fashion,
"Go back to work. We need pictures.
And you need plenty of mazel."
On December ...
...Love Story had its world premiere
at the Loews State Theater in New York.
The lights went down.
Francis Lai's haunting
piano strings started up.
Ryan O'Neal, alone and bereft in a snowy
Central Park, said in a voiceover:
What can you say abouta -year-old girl who died?Love Story didn't open. It exploded.
All over the world, boys and girls would walk
out of that theater in love for the night.
Why did it do such business?
A guy would take
a different girl every night.
I think there were more pregnancies
over Love Story than any film ever made.
People went back to see it three, four,
five, six times. It was an aphrodisiac.
It even got raves from the critics.
This, I couldn't believe.
Time magazine said it started a new
Hollywood, and Ali ended up on its cover.
Me? I felt like Casanova.
The most extraordinary lady
in the world on my arm.
And in her belly, a little Evans-to-be.
Hey, Ali. What's new?
You can say that on television now.
- Go ahead.
- Okay. Well, I'm gonna have a baby.
Isn't that great?
That's beautiful. Are you excited?
- Sure. It's fabulous.
- I know...
We'll talk about your
expecting today on Dinah's Place.
I'd have to say no two people
in the entire world...
...were happier than Ali and myself.
We had to pinch ourselves each day
to believe all this was happening to us.
We had our Joshua,
we had ourselves.
Ali and Jackie Kennedy were considered the
two most admired women in America.
I'm sure the luckiest motherfucker.
For the first time since I became head
of the studio, I finally had some job security.
Now it's garbage.
We had put together a string of hits,
including Rosemary's Baby...
...Harold and Maude, The Odd Couple,
True Grit and Love Story.
In we finally
reached the mountaintop.
That air smelled
mighty good up there.
Of all the major studios,
Paramount was now in first place.
It's hard to believe that, just four
years earlier, we were in ninth.
It was the beginning of the Golden Era.
Over the next four years,
we would collect Oscar nominations...
...stay number one, and go through a streak
of hits that, to this day, is unprecedented.
If I had to pick our crowning jewel...
...I'd say it was a -page treatment to
a novel called Mafia, written by Mario Puzo.
In turning treatment into novel, Mario asked
if he could change the name to Godfather.
"Sure, why not?"
I never thought he would finish it anyway.
Well, he finished it.
It became the biggest book of the decade.
And there I was, holding the Hope diamond.
Paramount didn't wanna make the film.
"Sicilian mobster films don't play."
That's what these
distribution guys had to say.
And when you bat zero,
don't make another sucker bet.
I called up Peter Bart
at the studio late that night.
What the fuck do we do?
Peter shook his head, laughed.
"Evans, we got a problem."
No, we don't.
We've gotta find a solution, Peter.
It must have been after
in the morning, and we found it.
Outside of red ink, every one of the
films shared another thing in common.
They were written, directed
and produced and usually starred...
...Jews, not Sicilians.
There's a thin line, Peter,
between a Jew and a Sicilian.
We're gonna make a picture that's
gonna be Sicilian to the core.
You're gonna smell the spaghetti.
There was one problem.
It's hard to believe, but in ...
...there wasn't a single Italian-American
director, that's with any credibility.
Bart looks at me and he says,
"What about Coppola?"
Are you nuts?
One thing for sure is, he is.
Bart snaps right back at me,
Yeah, yeah, yeah. That's your
esoteric bullshit coming out.
Let's face it, Bart.
This genius has made three pictures:
You're a Big Boy Now, some artsy-fartsy
kind of picture, did no business.
Finian's Rainbow, which was a top Broadway
musical. He made it into a disaster.
And now he's got The Rain People out there,
which everyone's rained on.
There's gotta be someone else, come on.
But then there was another problem.
Coppola didn't wanna do it.
This guy couldn't get
a cartoon made in town.
Yet he didn't wanna make The Godfather.
I gotta give the guy credit.
His convictions were strong.
He didn't want to immortalize the families
that blackened his Italian heritage.
After three long days of discussion with
this guy, Peter's on the horn.
"Coppola will make the picture.
On one condition.
That it's not a film
about organized gangsters."
It's not about organized gangsters?
It ain't a musical, Peter.
I told you the guy's nuts.
"He has an idea, Evans.
It's not bad.
He wants to make it as a family chronicle,
a metaphor for capitalism in America."
Fuck him and the horse he rode in on!
He is nuts. Now get him out of here.
"Bob, I will if you want me to,
but take steps first.
Let's not forget, he's Italian."
I had less than hours
to make the decision.
Sell it, or shake hands with the devil.
Coppola was announced
as The Godfather's maestro.
The shooting of The Godfather
should take several months.
And the picture's scheduled for release
sometime around Christmas, .
So if in the next few months, you see some
old cars dashing around or about New York...
...or see a gentleman taking
another gentleman somewhere...
...at the point of a loaded gun,
don't raise a hue and cry...
...because it's only the filming
of The Godfather.
But then, New Yorkers don't raise
a hue and cry...
...about that sort of thing anyway, do they?
This is Gene Huebert,
Fifth Avenue and st Street.
It was the unveiling
of Francis' cut of The Godfather.
In the theater sat Francis with his quadrille
of assistants, editors and ass-kissers.
Plus the rest of his production
team were all there.
The film was to open in four months.
Paramount's big Christmas gift to the world.
The lights went down,
the picture started.
Two hours and six minutes later,
the room began to fill with light.
Francis, I want to speak with you. Alone.
I was on fire.
And the prince himself
took a half-hour to get to my office.
Thanks for showing, Francis.
"All my boys were telling
me how great the picture is.
They tell me not to touch a frame."
The picture stinks, Francis.
You shot a great film. Where the fuck is it?
In your kitchen with your spaghetti?
It sure ain't on the screen.
Where's the family, the heart, the feeling?
Is that left in the kitchen too?
Did Coppola glare.
Schmuck. Name me a studio head that tells
a director to make a picture longer.
Only a nut like me would.
But you're gonna do it.
You shot a saga, pal,
but you turned in a trailer.
Now go back and give me a movie.
The next morning
I told the New York honchos...
...that the picture couldn't
be ready for Christmas.
I didn't need a phone
to hear their screams.
Of course he agreed with them.
"You've got it for Christmas.
Don't worry. Evans is crazy.
He wants to change everything.
Hear this: He wants me to make it longer."
Then I get my orders, and unalterable.
"Evans, the picture is to be ready
for Christmas, and that is it."
Fine. I quit.
A year before, they would've
booted me out on my ass.
Yeah, but Love Story saved Paramount.
And I was their fair-haired boy.
When you've only got one shot, either you
pull down that beautiful brass ring...
...or you get them brass knuckles
in the balls. You got no second time around.
and the entire company's chagrin...
...Bluhdorn backed me,
and backed me all the way.
Once again, the eastern seaboard is remindedthat winter is never over until Jack Frost...... gets a hotfoot that will send himscurrying on his way. The winter-weary...
It was the morning
of The Godfather premiere.
Outside, New York was suffering through
the worst March blizzard of the decade.
I was parked at the Carlyle Hotel,
making last-minute preparations...
...when Ali came in from the cold.
Against her wishes,
I'd packed her off to Texas...
...to star with Steve McQueen
in The Getaway.
Two months had passed, and I hadn't
once bothered to visit her on location.
Quickly, we embraced.
Instead of kissing her, I whispered, wait here.
I'm expecting a call.
Weeks ago, I had invited
Henry Kissinger to the premiere.
My timing couldn't have been worse.
The North Vietnamese offensive had just
begun and, naturally, he begged off.
Hello, this is Robert Evans.
May I please speak to Dr. Kissinger?
"No. Dr. Kissinger's with the president.
He'll have to call you back."
Have him call me as soon as possible.
Please, it's urgent.
Quicker than a junior agent
at the William Morris Agency...
Kissinger's on the phone.
"Bob, Bob, what's the urgency?"
Tonight's the premiere. Win or lose, it would
be worth it if I could walk in with you.
"I have a : breakfast I can't get out of,
Bob. I'm leaving the country tomorrow."
Henry, you didn't hear me.
I said I need you tonight.
Only later did I learn that his leaving the
country was a secret mission to Moscow.
And the breakfast was
with the Joint Chiefs of Staff...
...to resolve the mining of Haiphong Harbor.
I hung up, quickly called Bluhdorn.
Charlie, Kissinger's coming.
Evans, I love you. I love you!"
That was Charlie Bluhdorn.
Not easy. But not bad, either.
The doors opened.
Enough flashbulbs went off to light
up the entire state of New Jersey.
On one arm, Ali MacGraw,
the ravishing Mrs. Evans.
On the other, the most charismatic
statesman in the world.
Is this really happening to me?
It was a blast.
I played master of ceremonies,
introducing anyone and everyone.
The screaming, the fights, the threats...
...that never let up since day one
of filming, were worth it.
Even Coppola, whom I had hired
over Paramount's objections...
...and then personally fired, four
different times, came over to hug me...
...closing the book
on two years of terrible battles.
Well, she never looked more radiant.
For the rest of the night,
we danced as one.
Holding her tightly in my arms,
I felt I was the luckiest man in the world.
Could be the highest moment of my life.
Was I dreaming it?
Any man who thinks he can
read the mind of a woman...
...is a man who knows nothing.
A month later, I was in Paris working
on the translation of The Godfather...
...into French, Italian,
German and Spanish.
I called up Ali on the set of The Getaway,
but there was no answer in her room.
Jumping up in a cold sweat
from a bad dream...
...I called El Paso again.
Nah, I said to myself, it couldn't be.
Later that afternoon, I connected.
Where the hell have you been, baby?
"I fell asleep in my dressing room."
You're lying, Ali.
You're with McQueen, aren't you?
Well, expect me in El Paso tomorrow.
"It's too late, Evans.
You missed the plane a long time ago."
I flew out that night to Texas.
Joshua and his nanny were
at the airport to greet me, but no Ali.
I checked into a hotel miles out of town.
Holding back my tears,
I played with my son for the next hours.
Ali arrived at that evening.
The last thing she wanted was
to spend the night with me. But she did.
The next evening,
she didn't return to my border hideout.
I sped into town, ran up the stairs
to Ali's hotel and banged on the door.
"I need time to think.
Please, let me finish the picture...
...and get home, for Josh's sake."
On the plane back to L.A.,
I checked my watch.
How could I have been
so fucking dumb?
It's an hour-and- -minute flight.
I never once took it...
...until infidelity got me off my ass.
Ali and McQueen had been
having an affair for months.
Was it her fault?
It was mine.
I ignored her one promise,
never to leave her.
Instead, I buried myself
into The Godfather.
Ali filed for divorce.
A few months later,
she and McQueen got hitched.
Joshua would live with them.
He would only know me now
as a weekend father.
Did it haunt me?
Well, let's just say, when a woman
leaves you, it ain't easy. It never is.
But when that woman leaves you
for the biggest movie star in the world...
...well, let's just say
it makes you feel small.
Finally, I turned all my attention back
to my other great love, the mountain.
Maybe it was my mood, but the more
I thought about it, the angrier I became.
For the last years, I had worked
night and day for Paramount.
Bluhdorn's golden boy now
wanted some gold of his own.
While I was living rich,
everyone around me was getting rich.
He's right. You give them an inch,
and they step all over you.
My contract's up, but I'd
been throwing sevens too long.
And here I am.
I'm still behind the eight ball.
I called on my consigliere
and closest friend, Sidney Korshak...
...one of the most feared lawyers
in the country.
"I'll take care of it and quick,"
said Korshak. "You're gonna get gross.
I don't care if it's just
one percent on every film."
Korshak may have been known as the myth,
but he was no myth to Charlie.
His proposal was turned down
flatter than Twiggy's chest.
Bluhdorn wasn't smart.
He was brilliant.
He knew my weak link, ego,
and he sure pressed it...
...knowing it far
overshadowed my greed.
"Sidney, I want everybody to get rich,
but don't rape me. Don't rape me."
The real love of Charlie's life was
not family, or sex, or even business.
It was negotiating.
Charlie would negotiate for anything,
from an airline to a potato.
"I want Bob to make history.
I'm gonna let him make a picture of his own
for five years, under his own banner...
...and still run Paramount.
The last person to have that was
Darryl Zanuck, years ago.
I want him to get rich.
I'm so proud of him, Sidney."
I would stay on at Paramount
as head of the studio...
...and I would get to produce a picture
a year for five years. But no raise.
- You produced Chinatown.
But when we talk about that movie,
we call it Roman Polanski's Chinatown.
That's a possessive credit from a Director's
Guild point of view, which is very unfair.
It is Roman Polanski's Chinatown.
It's also Bob Towne's Chinatown.
But, more so, and I don't say this from an
egotistical way, it's Bob Evans' Chinatown.
I was on the picture for five years, four
years, and Roman was on it for nine months.
But it says,
"Roman Polanski's Chinatown."
My first independent production had its
origins over a steak dinner with Bob Towne.
an original story he was writing.
"It's about how Los Angeles
became a boomtown, Evans.
Incest and water.
It's set in the ' s.
Second-rate shamus gets eighty-sixed
by a mysterious socialite.
I'm writing it for Nicholson."
I had met Nicholson a few years back
and we'd become great pals.
Sounds perfect for Irish.
What's it called?
You mean it takes place in Chinatown?
"No, no, no. Chinatown
is a state of mind."
Oh, I got it.
I had no idea what the
fuck he was talking about.
Six months later, Towne delivered
his first draft of the script.
Just like the title, it was pure Chinese.
Was I alone in my confusion?
Nobody, I mean nobody, understood it.
One day, I was summoned
to a meeting with Charles Bluhdorn.
"Evans, don't make
this your first picture.
No one at the studio
understands a word of it.
The only place it'll play
is in your projection room."
I'm thinking, thinking, thinking...
I knew I had Nicholson locked.
And even though I didn't understand the
script, I knew Towne was a brilliant writer.
Sorry, Charlie, Chinatown is my next picture.
I'm gonna make it.
Tonight we are honoring for best motion
picture drama, Chinatown...
...The Conversation, Earthquake,
The Godfather: Part II...
...A Woman Under the Influence.
And the winner is...
And the winner is...
Robert Evans of Paramount Pictures...... will acceptthe Golden Globe Award for Chinatown.
It wins every award
you could ever think of.
To this day, I believe it's considered the
quintessential private-eye film of its time.
It's a hell of a way to meet Catherine
Deneuve, I'll tell you that. It certainly is.
This is the second award,
and I'm only a small part of it...
...that I've won in my life.
The first one was for the Most
Promising Newcomer of the Year.
It was the Photoplay Award, .
And were they wrong.
The attention the picture
got caused an uproar...
...with every creative bit
of talent in the studio.
"How can Evans run the studio, be involved
with our pictures and make his own?"
They were all fucking jealous.
If the picture had flopped, it wouldn't
have made a difference. Confrontation time.
I was given two choices.
To continue running the studio,
with a much-increased deal by the way...
...or go out with my own
banner and make films.
It was a tough choice, but I was just tired
of working hours a day...
...eight days a week,
to make everyone else rich but myself.
With that in mind, I said,
goodbye, studio. Hello, producer.
And went out on my own.
It wasn't my scene.
I rarely ever drank.
For two years, I had been suffering
from a severe pain...
...the result of a sciatic
Lying beside me one night
was a Hollywood princess.
"Is it me?" she asked.
"The pain can't be that bad."
Wearing only a necklace,
she handed it to me.
Unscrewing the top, she whispered,
"Take a sniff, a sniff of life."
It was my first experience
into the world of white.
The seducer had been seduced.
I was working hours a day, seven days
a week, with no plans to slow down.
With six pictures in development and
two in production, I felt invincible.
The first flick to hit was Marathon Man,
and it went straight through the roof.
- I salute you. To your health.
- Hear, hear!
I followed it up with Black Sunday.
Then Urban Cowboy. Popeye was on its way.
At the age of I was on my way...
...to becoming the youngest recipient
of the Thalberg Award.
Goodbye ' s, hello ' s.
Here I come.
It's fair to say that you live
a lot of people's dream.
You're seen in magazines, dating models and
movie stars. Is it as good as it looks?
I most probably lead as much
of a Ionely life as any man you know.
I have no free time for myself. I have no way
of knowing myself as a person.
- I don't like myself as a person.
- Bob, I keep reading...
...I keep seeing pictures of you
with gorgeous women.
- Are they important in your life, women?
- Yes, women are very important in my life.
How? How important?
I haven't had the opportunity of really
taking advantage of life at all.
You see pictures of me
with beautiful women.
I don't go out
with many different women.
My life is not to be envied.
I envy many other people, not myself.
I can go a long time
without seeing anybody.
- Don't you get terrible headaches?
- No, no.
Are you an obsessive record keeper?
It's said you have albums
and pictures and things...
I'm not as... I wish I had...
Was more obsessive about that.
- Is that Jack Nicholson?
- It is.
If he knew that was being shown,
he'd kill me.
It was taken in the privacy of a room.
I have to inject here a moment
because Bobby Evans...
- We dated and had a great time.
- I also dated him.
- He asked me...
- Is there anyone here who didn't date him?
- He was very busy in the ' s.
- And he was terrific, wasn't he?
On May I got a call from
an associate of mine in New York.
A woman we knew was offering to sell us
pharmaceutical cocaine at bargain prices.
Pharmaceutical cocaine was mythical...
...manufactured by only
one company in America, Merck.
So mythical was its allure...
...that it became the DEA's most effective
bait to entrap schmuck buyers.
Twenty-four hours later,
my associate was on the horn.
"What do I tell her?
She's called twice."
Me being the gambler, and maybe the fool,
said, hell, let's buy it.
The deal was to go down on Friday.
I waited by the phone all day.
At : that evening, I was going
out the door, when my houseman hailed me.
It was my associate.
"Bob, Mike and I have been arrested.
We've been set up by the DEA."
What are you talking about?
"Don't worry. Nothing's gonna go wrong.
It'll all be taken care of.
You have nothing to worry about.
Your name was not mentioned."
It was the biggest mistake of my life.
How could I have been so fucking dumb?
Was Bluhdorn angry?
Foaming at the mouth.
"I'll never forgive you, Evans."
He never did.
Gone now was the
sacred embrace of Bluhdorn...
...never to return again.
Paramount, the company
I saved from the graveyard...
...gave a terse statement to the press
concerning my new infamy.
"Evans is not an employee of Paramount
and has not been an employee for years.
He is an independent contractor,
producing pictures for us."
What a difference a day makes.
Judge Brodericks' dictate was to produce
a -second anti-drug spot.
Well, I did a little more than that.
I produced a series of weeklong specials
for NBC entitled Get High on Yourself.
It was a happening.
All my friends showed, and it became known
as "The Woodstock of the ' s."
I've never been as high
on myself as I am now.
It must have been
a month and a half ago.
I had a hundred people here, and my kid
was here, and I ran the commercials.
When it was over,
he came to me and said:
"I'm so proud of you."
First time he ever said it.
"I'm so proud of you, Daddy.
Can I sleep in your bed tonight?"
And if I get nothing more
out of it... Nothing...
I've been really paid my remuneration
for whatever I've done. That's worth years.
Bob, aside from Get High on Yourself,
what are your future projects?
I have The Cotton Club which I'm supposed
to start in June. A project I love.
Ain't as important as
Get High on Yourself, though.
Paramount had no interest
in my next picture, The Cotton Club.
So in May of ' I flew to the Cannes Film
Festival to secure independent financing.
Sylvester Stallone, then the biggest star
in the world, had agreed to play the lead.
And I was there to announce it.
I was supposed to meet distributors
on a Monday morning at a.m. For breakfast.
I get a call at : that Monday morning,
from..."Hello, Bob, this is Sly."
And I said, yeah, Sly. He said, "You know,
Bob, I don't think I wanna do the picture."
So I said, I don't quite understand.
I mean, we have a contract.
"You don't understand, Bob. I don't like
the script." I said, well, you worked on it.
I said, what is it, Sly? He said,
"I'm not getting paid enough for it."
To make a very long story short, and a very
long conversation, rather bitter, short...
...he backed away. Now, here I have
of the top buyers in the world...
...and I have no star,
and I have a half a script.
I said, ladies and gentlemen,
I'm going to show you a poster.
But I wanna tell you that the film
will not be any better than the poster.
So if you don't like the poster,
please don't buy the film.
And I unraveled a poster, which I had
worked on for eight months with two artists.
And I said, this is the poster.
And I passed it around, and they all
looked at it. And it says the whole story:
"Its violence startled the world..."
No, "Its violence startled the nation,
and its music startled the world."
And they all looked at the poster,
and I said, that's the picture.
So one fellow from Switzerland says,
"Who's gonna star in the film?"
I said, sir, I won't let you
have the picture.
principal photography commenced.
Francis offered to direct the film.
How could I refuse?
Francis directing it, Mario writing it,
me producing it.
What a shot of touching magic.
Hey, we didn't do too bad on
The Godfather, did we?
Was I wrong!
The production was a disaster.
Over-budget, over-schedule. And me?
I was barred from the set
by the prince himself.
It was the hottest movie dramain Los Angeles today...... and it took placein a downtown federal courtroom.The legal battle was over who would controlproduction of the film The Cotton Club.
The Cotton Club has been a subjectof intense interest and backstairs gossip.
The Cotton Club, a productionof Robert Evans and Francis Ford Coppola...... is the subject of a vicious...You say Evans would second-guess youif he was back in command?Evans, that's his middle name.That's what he does, all these years.
- Will the picture be a success?
- Francis' work on it is brilliant.I hope we'll be working together.We've fought before, only it wasn't in court.I hope we have the same luckas we had on The Godfather.
Despite an expectedlengthy court battle...
.... the film is expectedto open in theaters in December.The Cotton Club opened later that month.
While some of the critics praised the film,
others just didn't get it.
Neither did the audiences.
The picture quickly faded away...
...thus ending the first half of the ' s.
The good half.
I had no idea what lay ahead.
Two days ago, a badly decomposed body wasfound in this dry riverbed in Copco Canyon...... near Gorman,in northern Los Angeles County.An autopsy indicated the victim diedof a single gunshot wound.In a remote area north of Los Angeles,a beekeeper made a grisly discovery.
I crossed through a dry wash,
went around a bush, and around the bush...
...and there was a hand sticking up,
and there was a body laying there.
The body found in the Gorman area this
past Friday has positively been identified...
...as Mr. Roy Radin.
It was midnight when the phone rang.
A bit pissed, I picked up the phone. Yeah?
It was my attorney, Robert Shapiro.
"Roy Radin is dead."
I laid there in shock, totally stunned.
I met Roy Radin a few months earlier
through an acquaintance named Laney Jacobs.
Radin and I met and discussed
forming a production company.
The Cotton Club might have been
one of the films under the banner.
We shook hands, but nothing
ever really came of it.
What does that have to do with me?
"Nothing and everything."
Shapiro told me that the police would be
calling, and they'd wanna talk to me.
We sat down with them while I told them
everything I remembered about Roy Radin.
Laney Jacobs introducedEvans to Roy Radin.
For the next six years, the name
Robert Evans was making headlines again.
No, I wasn't buying Warner Bros.
This time, I was buying infamy.
The Cotton Club murder case...
Doors closed on me quietly.
Calls made were not returned.
Though I was still ensconced
in the primo offices of Paramount...
...I may as well have been a shadow.
Finally, in the spring of ' after six long
years of innuendos on my character...
...the Roy Radin case went to trial.
Laney Jacobs, the woman who introduced me
to Radin, was tried for his murder.
The prosecutor outlined
a case of money and drugs.
And this is gonna show,
that this woman here...
...Laney Greenberger, had two problems
with a man by the name of Roy Radin.
He told the jury that Laney had asked Radin
for a finder's fee for introducing him to me.
When Radin refused to pay it,
Laney became irate.
Two weeks before his murder, Laney,
who was a part-time coke dealer...
...suspected Radin of stealing a large
amount of cocaine from her.
At this point,
Laney decided to kill him.
After getting into her
...with her, Mr. Radin was never
seen alive again.
Jacobs and her accomplices were convicted
for the murder of Roy Radin.
Well, I wasn't even a suspect.
I was a tangential character
in the proceedings, at best.
However, the name "Evans" gets ink.
If you live by the sword,
know damn well you could die by it.
For many a decade, the sword
treated me real well. Maybe too well.
Popeye and Urban Cowboy
hit the screens in .
Now, seven years later,
the only product Evans was delivering...
...to the mountain of Paramount
Ending whatever I had left
of a legacy to be...
...I was paid a rare visit by Richard Zimbert,
the head honcho of business affairs.
He walked into my office,
not a happy camper.
"We go back too long, Evans, and this is not
me talking. It's orders. I can't help it.
Do you want the truth?" Our eyes met.
I knew what he was going to say.
No. But I gotta hear it, Dick. Shoot.
"Bob, there's not one person at Paramount
that wants to do business with you."
Dick, the only surprise is that
it's taken you this long to tell me.
I suppose when it's over, it's over.
It was hard for him to say the next words.
"Your office, Bobby. We need a date."
Is days okay, Dick?
"Yeah, sure. If you want more, take more."
No, days will be fine.
Once king of the mountain,
now I was not even allowed to climb it.
My -year home had been
pulled from under me.
From behind the gates of Paramount,
I was now behind the gates of Woodland.
For an entire decade, my kid stood watching
his father's life fall to shambles.
Once I was a king, his mother told him.
My character, persona and
professional abilities were now lost.
Each month, punches were hitting me harder
and harder from all directions.
The effects of public disgrace, the effects of
drugs and the effects of continued failure...
...never before experienced,
all but shriveled me into obscurity.
So deep was my depression...
...that I wanted to get into a car
and drive south one way.
Finally, I'd rid myself of the last
bastion of my dignity.
I sold my Woodland home
to a wealthy French industrialist.
The effect was that I all but
lost the will to function.
Nightmares were telling me
I would never leave there alive.
Then lightning struck, bad lightning.
I had nowhere to turn.
Fearing the worst, suicide...
...I looked for protection.
I committed myself to the Scripps
Memorial Hospital, a loony bin.
I was put behind bars and
stripped of all my belongings.
The claustrophobia alone shot my blood
pressure up over to the mark.
Not wanting a DO A on their hands, the
nurses shoved sedatives down my throat...
...trying to calm me.
A horrible mistake, with no way out.
Is it safe?
I had to take control of the never-ending
bad dream that my life had become.
Never having been
...I knew that action, not therapy,
was my only shot at survival.
Take your time.
That night, I snuck out of my room and
found my way to a phone booth in the ward.
I called my limo driver,
John Paul, collect.
John Paul, meet me tomorrow
at noon, on the dot, and wait.
It might be an hour, a day, a week. I don't
care. Keep your motor running, got it?
The next morning, when all
the attendants were busy...
...I made my dash, and I made the elevator
as it closed behind me.
I made it, I made it, I thought to myself.
When I hit the bottom floor, the door opened.
There were two goons waiting for me.
You're a very nosy fella, kitty-cat.
You know what happens to nosy fellas?
No? Wanna guess?
They lose their noses.
I made my dash.
The two goons were right
behind me. yards away...
...my car was waiting.
I had to make it before they got me.
I was older than the two of them put
together, but they lacked one thing: Heart.
I breathlessly made it into the car,
slammed the door...
...as I grabbed
for a tiny bottle of J&B.
Back to Woodland, I said to John Paul.
My limo was pulling into the gates
of my once-owned Woodland sanctuary.
What had been my Garden of Eden for close
to a quarter of a century was mine no more.
Even more painful was that I was
now a tenant in my own home...
...paying $ a month
for the privilege of living there.
Could I afford it?
Not by a long shot.
I knew that getting my home, my roots
of years, back was vital to my survival.
There was a big problem:
The new owner, a wealthy French
industrialist named Tony Murray...
...had no intention of selling it back.
Jack Nicholson did a Henry Kissinger.
He flew to Monte Carlo and begged
Tony to sell me back my home.
Tony was shocked Jack would fly halfway
around the world to plead on my behalf...
...for what he considered
just a piece of real estate.
Wherever Tony went,
he'd tell the story.
"Imagine Jack Nicholson on his knees to me.
These film people, they're all crazy."
The impact of Jack's plea, however,
caused Tony to waiver.
He got me back my home.
A year passed. It was close
to midnight on a Tuesday evening.
The phone kept ringing.
It awakened me out of a deep sleep.
I looked at the clock. It was only : .
Should I pick it up?
No. I know I didn't win the lottery.
Hey, maybe it's the broad
I slipped my number to last night.
Hey, it's not too late.
I'm up. I hope it's her.
Disguising my voice to protect me
from bad news or bad company...
...I Englished it.
Well, I was wrong again. It wasn't the broad,
but I sure won the fucking lottery.
It was Stanley Jaffe on the phone,
and he was just made head of Paramount.
I'd given Stanley his first big gig
back in on Goodbye, Columbus.
"Called to tell you one thing.
From this day on, the life
of Robert Evans is going to be a better one.
You're way overdue, kid.
Now sleep well."
Stanley Jaffe's loyalty to me was such
that it gave me back my dignity.
Back behind the gates
of Paramount I went.
And back to my old offices,
the best on the lot.
Do you believe in miracles?
Well, I do now.
I don't understand it,
this world of fickle flicks.
It's been years now, and I'm still here,
still standing behind them gates.
Bet your house it ain't been dull.
I've either done it or gotten it.
You name them, I've met them.
I've either worked, fought, hired,
fired, laughed, cried with them...
...been figuratively fucked by them, literally
fucked them. It's been one hell of a ride.
Where is everyone?
Destitute? Yeah, many.
Retired? I don't know.
I ain't seen them.
One thing I do know: I ain't dead,
I ain't wealthy, I ain't destitute...
...and I ain't retired.
Can't afford any of them.
Gotta keep standing, stay in the picture.
My life today?
More volatile than ever.
This last year alone, I've been shot down,
bloodied, trampled, accused...
betrayed, scandalized, maligned.
You bet your ass it is.
But I ain't complaining.
Nothing comes easy.
The last question:
Is it truly worth it?
Sure. Know why? I love what I do.
And very few people do.
And when you think of most
of the work you do in life...
...most of people's lives
are spent in their work...
...and very few people enjoy what they do,
and I love what I do. So, yeah, it's worth it.
Damn right it's worth it.
Okay. . Robert Evans
years from now.
Are we rolling? We're rolling?
Well, why didn't you tell me?
I don't know if we're rolling.
- We're rolling.
- Thank you very much.
My fellow Americans,
I'm coming to you tonight...
...because I am contemplating
ending my life.
After years as being head of Paramount
Studios and then an independent producer...
...and suffering a terrible disaster
with my first independent venture...
... Marathon in Drag... Something. I can't
remember. It was years ago.
I would like to ask you, anyone,
all over the country...
If you have a script, and it's
a love story, I'll do it.
I don't care if it's in drag
or a monkey fucking an elephant.
If it's a good script, I'll do it.
And that's a promise. You send it to me.
And I wanna say that I would talk more
to you, but I don't have the strength to talk.
I'm in the hospital now. There's a Sony tape
recorder here, and this is the maternity ward.
They tell me I just had a baby.
I never knew I had a vagina.
It came as a shock to me...
...but I just talked to my wife,
Sue Mengers, and she says, well...
...didn't I know she had a cock all the time?
I never knew it. I give you my word.
She came in yesterday
and showed it to me.
It was a terrific cock.
One of the biggest I ever saw.
Wait a minute. Is that phone for me?
Well, I'm recording. I can't talk.
Yeah, who's this? I can't talk.
I'm on television. Wait, stop rolling.
Yeah, what is it?
Who? Joyce Haber?
I remember her. That was years ago.
She died. I can't come to the funeral.
Why am I going to her funeral?
I'm sorry. I'm too busy.
Send her something.
I don't know. Whatever she eats.
Oh, she's dead now. Well, if she's dead,
then what do you want me to see her for?
Just get it done immediately.
I gotta go. Thanks.
What? I'm sorry, I gotta talk...
My wife. Yes, Sue.
My wife is Ms. Mengers, one of the top
agents in the town years ago.
Today, the business is terrible. She's in Las
Vegas. She's a croupier there at the Dunes.
At night she doubles as a dune.
She's a dune.
If you ever go see her, you'll say,
"There's Sue Mengers."
She's a good dune, though.
The best dune I ever fucked. Wait a minute.
I'm sorry, Sue. No, I can't. Because I have
to go back in my closet and clean it.
I haven't cleaned it in a long time.
They put me in a closet.
I don't know why.
They said I'd understand.
But I'm coming out
of the closet very soon.
Yeah, Sue. The delivery was fine.
Yeah, it hurt a little.
Yeah, but it was wonderful.
They shaved me. Yeah.
I don't know. I can't talk. No,
I have to get off. I gotta see dailies.
I wanna see dailies of my delivery.
I wanna see myself giving birth.
They got a big close-up of my cunt.
It's terrific. All right, I'll see you. Take care.
By the way, I want to thank you very much
for listening. And I wanna say that I wish...
...all of you a healthy life,
because my life is over.
And I was just gonna ask one favor.
President Warren Beatty...
...has asked me to ask your vote again,
and I ask you to do it, just for me.
Because he has some terrible scandal on me.
And I'm afraid he's gonna tell it.
And it's very embarrassing to me.
So please vote for Warren Beatty.
And I wish you a good