Peter Winkler tells us why he wrote a biography about Dennis Hopper, and what Hopper thought about film, art, and acting:
“I was the best actor in the world, pound for pound — I mean the best young actor. I didn’t think there was anyone to top me. Until I saw James Dean. Watching Dean act was like watching someone pull miracles out of the air. He fascinated me. Because he was working internally, and I was working externally. I was an actor who’d come out of Shakespeare. My experience of acting was line readings, precise gestures, knowing what you were going to do next. Everything I was doing was preconceived, although it looked very natural. Dean completely disregarded any direction in the script. He would do a scene differently every time. It came straight out of his imagination, his improvisation. I didn’t understand how he was arriving at those conclusions, because he was having real emotional feelings, real emotional reactions. He also had a way of physically expressing himself that I’d never seen another actor do. I didn’t know what he was doing, but I knew it was great.”
Read the whole interview here.
When Dennis Hopper died, I was in high school and I was sad. I asked my friends if they were sad too, but they looked at me blankly and asked: “Who?”
Thank god for my friend Mary, my friend I didn’t know was beyond our years in her amazing taste in film and music and literature. Ever have a friend like that? You don’t realize until much later what a much more beautiful person they were at that age than you were? At least she knew. During her graduation party, we sat in her basement alone and she played Tom Waits records. We watched Eraserhead on halloween. Every time I remember Dennis Hopper, I remember Mary and her witty literature shirts, her love for David Lynch and classic horror films.
(Source: lareviewofbooks, via defyculture)