MARC ELIOT is the New York Times bestselling author of more than a dozen books on popular culture, among them the highly acclaimed biographies Cary Grant and Jimmy Stewart; the award-winning Walt Disney: Hollywood's Dark Prince; Down 42nd Street; what many consider the best book about the sixties, his Phil Ochs biography, Death of a Rebel; Take It from Me (with Erin Brockovich), Down Thunder Road: The Making of Bruce Springsteen; To the Limit: The Untold Story of the Eagles; and Reagan: The Hollywood Years. He has written on the media and pop culture for numerous publications, including Penthouse, L.A. Weekly, and California Magazine. He divides his time among New York City, Woodstock, Los Angeles, and the Far East.
Despite numerous film retrospectives and analyses of Eastwood as a director, this is the first full-blown (though unauthorized) biography since Patrick McGilligan's 2002 Clint: The Life and Legend. Best-selling biographer Eliot (Cary Grant) brings the reader up to date on Eastwood's life and includes some of Eastwood's richest creative years, during which he produced Mystic River, Million Dollar Baby, Letters from Iwo Jima, Flags of Our Fathers, Changeling, and Gran Torino. Like McGilligan, Eliot highlights Eastwood's small-town roots, his stint on TV (Rawhide), the spaghetti Westerns, his penchant for living life on his own terms, and his philandering, but Eliot's book is far more flattering. Eliot's love of movies is apparent, and he seeks to cement Eastwood's legacy as a "legitimate auteur, intriguing, unique, talented, and compelling." Eliot addresses the difficulties in writing biographies about celebrities who are still alive, and though this book was written without interviewing Eastwood, it is well researched. Verdict Though the writing style is spare, the book is entertaining and informative. Celebrity watchers and film students alike will enjoy.-Rosellen Brewer, Sno-Isle Libs., Marysville, WA Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
Eliot, biographer of stars ranging from Walt Disney to Bruce Springsteen, tackles the life, career and artistic challenges of Clint Eastwood. In 1954, at age 24, Eastwood was married and working at an Oakland, Calif., gas station when he was brought to Universal by director Arthur Lubin and signed to a learning contract. After years of uncredited appearances and bit parts in B films, he finally got his break when he was cast as Rowdy Yates on CBS's Rawhide, seen for eight seasons (1959-1965). His role as the poncho-clad Man with No Name in Serge Leone's innovative westerns triggered a solid movie career, followed by the popular Dirty Harry series. In 1971, he made his directorial debut (Play Misty for Me) and later racked up multiple nominations and awards, including Oscar wins for directing Unforgiven and Million Dollar Baby. Updating previous biographies, Eliot analyzes both box-office bombs and successes while also probing the "never-ending drama" of Eastwood's modus vivendi, his "financial empire" and his personal relationships. Married twice, Eastwood has seven children by five different women. Although Eastwood did not consent to be interviewed and key sources asked not to be named, Eliot documents a wealth of details in this well-researched, comprehensive biography that will not disappoint Eastwood's fans. (Oct.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
"...Eliot documents a wealth of details in this well-researched,
comprehensive biography that will not disappoint Eastwood's
"The story of a man who goes from small-time jazz pianist and gas-station attendant to Hollywood leading man reads like a rich movie plotline. All the sex, brawls, and gunslinging are here."
Praise for Reagan The Hollywood Years
"A fascinating portrait."
"Eliot' s book is poised to provide something interesting: a fresh look at subject matter well worth dusting off. . . . The genesis of Reagan's later public persona is closely charted here."
-New York Times
Praise for Jimmy Stewart
"Elucidates how a skinny guy with zero sex appeal molded himself into an enduring star."
"Stewart deserves critical reassessment and a seat closer to the front row of the film pantheon. Eliot makes a solid case for Stewart's merits, and he gives us a decent, eminently likable man."