ATTACK OF THE B MOVIE MEMOIRS!
Two actors escape Hollywood’s shadows scouring for credit.
By Jewel Shepard
This month, we’re treated to two new autobiographies: Adventures of a No Name Actor (Bloomsbury) by Marco Perella (JFK, Home Fries), who’s made a 16-year career out of playing the sort of characters you see in the credits simply as “Man #1,” or “Good ol’ Boy”; and Bruce Campbell’s If Chins Could Kill: Confessions of a B Movie Actor (St. Martin’s), which gives us a behind-the-scenes peek into the horror genre that has made Campbell (Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead movies) a star — of sorts.
And then there’s me, Jewel Shepard, actress-idol in lots of movies where I get whipped and/or take showers (Hollywood Hot Tubs, Caged Heat II). I wrote If I’m So Famous, How Come Nobody’s Ever Heard of Me? a few years ago. Get the theme here? We’re Hollywood’s second-class citizens, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have a few stories to tell.
SHEPARD: I started out getting my top ripped off telekinetically by Scott Baio in Zapped!
PERELLA: I started out as a dream figure, floating down the Guadalupe River in Kevin Costner’s Fandango…. But my scene was cut.
CAMPBELL: I started out making a bucketload of Super-8s. I owe a lot to Super-8.
SHEPARD: …And dead people.
CAMPBELL: I’ve worked with an army of dead people.
PERELLA: I’ve killed more than been killed. Too bad I didn’t waste Mary Tyler Moore in Keys to Tulsa. It would’ve been a great career move, like Bruce Dern killing John Wayne in The Cowboys; he’s famous forever.
SHEPARD: Fame is a strange bird.
PERELLA: It is. My fan base is five-to-ten-year-olds because I worked with Wishbone.
SHEPARD: The dog on PBS?
PERELLA: Kids are in awe of me.
SHEPARD: I got a used condom from a fan…
CAMPBELL: Ugh. That’s awful. I get an occasional adoring e-mail…from 15-year-old boys or gay men.
SHEPARD: No women’s underwear?
CAMPBELL: No. It pisses me off.