If you love learning little anecdotes about movies, TV, actors and everthing and anything to do with Hollywood, then you will love Hollywood Stories: Short, Entertaining Anecdotes About the Stars and Legends of the Movies! Stephen Schochet, a former Hollywood tour guide, collected hundreds of stories to share on his tours, and he now shares them with us in this very entertaining book.
As a pop culture enthusiast, I thought that I would already know of many of the anecdotes in Hollywood Stories. However, I knew barely a small fraction of the stories that Schochet had to tell. But I loved reading them all.
Did you know that Kirk Douglas always wanted to star in the film One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, but by the time a movie was finally financed, the producer, his son Michael Douglas, had to tell his father that he was now to old to play the part. Did you know that James Cameron didn’t originally want to cast Arnold Schwarzenegger as The Terminator or that Jack Nicholson was so unhappy with his work at one point while shooting As Good as it Gets that he asked to be let go? These are just a small sampling of the type of things that you will learn in Hollywood Stories.
I love the setup of the book. It is very browsable, which makes it the perfect book to pick up whenever you have a little spare time. Most anecdotes are just a paragraph or two. And I love the chapter headings. Instead of being arranged chronologically or alphabetically, the chapters are:
- Great Hollywood Comedians
- Science Fiction and Horror
- Oscar Tales
- Great Hollywood Anecdotes
- Western Vignettes
- Walt Disney Stories
- Moguls and Directors
- Silents to “Talkies”
- Television Tales
- Singers and Dancers
- Drinking Tales
- Miscellaneous Hollywood Stories
- Leading Men and Leading Ladies Lore
You can learn more about the book and the stories within at the Hollywood Stories website. The author, Stephn Schochet also is the author and narrator of two audiobooks, Tales of Hollywood and Fascinating Walt Disney. He has been referred to as “The best storyteller about Hollywood we have ever heard”. Usually when I recommend a book, I say who the recommended audience is. However, I recommend Hollywood Stories to everyone. Because of its light browsable style, even the most casual fan will enjoy it. And who doesn’t like to have some fun Hollywood anecdotes up their sleeve for the next party they attend?
Full Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book to review. All opinions are my own.