Father of The Blob: The Making of a Monster Smash and Other Hollywood Tales
By Jack H. Harris
Published by TVGuestpert Publishing, 2015. 257 pages.
There are some biographies out there that has a lot of horn-tooting, with tales of “I did this and I did that”, which can get a bit boring after awhile. But after reading Jack H. Harris’ tales of Hollywood, and even the years before he ever got there, were all page-turners and exciting to hear what happened next. It was strange that when I first started the book, the very first part goes through the whole creation process of The Molten Meteor, which was then later renamed as the infamous The Blob. But then it was finished and released so quickly, inside of 30 or so pages, I wondered what was he going to talk about next? That just showed how little I really knew about Jack H. Harris and what he had been involved with throughout his life.
After tales of his most famous offspring, Harris talks about this childhood and the little jobs that he had that would lead him to the producer that he became, decades before he would ever move to Hollywood. This book is filled with so many great stories, dealing with so many famous names, that it is almost like reading a gossip column, except these are true Hollywood stories and really give an insight of some of the workings that go on behind the curtains. Harris is very open about this childhood, his family, and the relationships with them, that again, really give a good insight to this talented man.
There were quite a few titles that he was involved with that I had no clue, proving once again that you never know what you’re going learn when you pick up one of these kind of books. We get to hear the beginnings of films like Dinosaurs, or Equinox, or even working with some guy named Carpenter early in his career. Did you know that Barbra Streisand was supposed to play the lead in The Eyes of Laura Mars? Neither did I. I will say that I didn’t necessarily agree with his negative feelings towards the 1988 remake of The Blob, which I’ve always found to be one of the better remakes of the ’80s, but I’m sure that was just more from a personal note from him. I don’t hold it against him!
Anybody that is a fan of The Blob needs to read this book. But it goes way beyond that film as well, since you get a good look inside the early days of Hollywood, how deals came and went, and how to deal with those kind of business deals and people. Very insightful. Even if you’re not, or never intending to get into that business, the stories are worth reading and are very entertaining.
And if any of that didn’t get you to want to buy this book, the retail is only $16.95!!! How can you pass that up?