Encouraging news on the book front – http://pfdbooks.wordpress.com/2008/04/16/the-last-day/ PFD,my agents, have been trying to sell the international rights to the book at the London Book Fair. My book, The Fame Formula, hits the bookshops in August. The Fame Formula is an account of how Hollywood’s fixers, fakers and star makers shaped the publicity industry. It is a history of the creators of that industry, who stepped out of circus life carrying the legacy of PT Barnum and applied it to Vaudeville, the movie industry and to the world that sprang from their legacy.
Hopefully I take the reader on a fascinating journey in search of my heroes, starting with Maynard Nottage and Harry Reichenbach at the turn of the twentieth Century when Vaudeville was booming and movies were in their infancy. They thrilled America with their innovative stunts, turning prim actresses into vamps, creating fake sheiks and smuggling animals into hotels to publicize their clients’ movies.
During the Golden Age of Hollywood, when the image of the studios was all important, Nottage and Reichenbach made way for publicists such as Howard Strickling at MGM who ruthlessly manipulated the lives of stars like Clark Gable and Judy Garland. The Fame Formula reveals how the fixers kept scandals out of the press, arranged marriages and even covered up murder.
As the studio system declined and the world saw the rise of the television, the PR industry adapted again with the emergence of press agents like Henry Rogers and Warren Cowan who helped the stars take control of their own images. The Fame Formula charts the slow rise through the 20th Century, in the hands of these practitioners, of today’s celebrity culture.
The book Includes a fame formula that reveals how long any would be star can expect to last in the spotlight – place your orders on Amazon now – please.