Kirk Douglas and John Wayne, conspiring to make the most of a so-called “feud” between them in order to grab the attention of the press and public — just as their “The War Wagon” movie was hitting theaters.
Doris Day, generously and graciously forgoing Hollywood glamor to help a press photographer get her photo session done early when the photographer suffered a death in her family — never hinting that she knew the reason for the rush.
Megastar Gary Cooper caught by a journalist in a potentially embarrassing situation — and the journalist keeping it to himself for decades.
Those are just samples from the treasure trove of inside Hollywood antics contained in “Starflacker: Inside the Golden Age of Hollywood,” the memoir by legendary publicist Dick Guttman, known for repping top of the A-list clientele the likes of Barbra Streisand and the late Elizabeth Taylor.
Amid a seemingly-never-ending stream of shock value celebrity tales, Dick’s book is refreshingly positive, full of warmth and wit.
As Renee Taylor noted, it’s a wonderful thing to see a man still in love with both Hollywood and his wife after six decades.
Dick has been known to stay firmly out of the limelight throughout his career. With “Starflacker” (available on Amazon.com) he steps out to serve as historian and guide to a Hollywood that lives in the cherished memories of some, and must seem like a fantasy to those familiar with the more cynical and less free show business scene of today.
A personal story is woven through, with surprises (LSD? CIA?) along the way.
Don’t let the daunting 652-page length scare you. It is a fun read, a trip back in time.