I'm not trying to be a hero! I'M FIGHTING THE DRAGON!!

The Young Eastwood Chronicles

This websight called Letters of Note recently posted a letter they got ahold of from 24-year-old Clint Eastwood to Billy Wilder. Eastwood was trying to get the role of Charles Lindbergh in THE SPIRIT OF ST. LOUIS and wanted to let him know that he wasn’t happy with the quality of his screen test. It’s cool because it’s so polite and modest and also shows a young man striving for the excellence that we always see him achieve seemingly so effortlessly. This was 1954, before he’d done anything, including that lab coat wearing bit part in REVENGE OF THE CREATURE.

eastwoodletter

Click on it to see the original post which is more legible and includes a transcript.

–thanks to Laird

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.
This entry was posted on Saturday, March 20th, 2010 at 12:52 pm and is filed under Blog Post (short for weblog). You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

19 Responses to “The Young Eastwood Chronicles”

  1. Class act then, class act now.

  2. Clint’s a class act all the way!

  3. This is not just an interesting letter, the whole blog is interesting! I guess I will spend my Saturday night with reading other people’s letters.

  4. That’s great! Let’s see an upcoming actor these days show that kind of humility. I love letters and stuff like this. Here’s another one along these lines:

    http://www.philipkdick.com/new_letters-laddcompany.html

  5. Vern is in my head. That’s weird, man, Letters of Note is in my Internet Favorites list just below Then fuck you Jack and The New Republic website.
    Great website. In an unassuming way, it covers a lot of interesting topics and lesser known moments of history. You could consult it daily or visit once a month & catch up on some great stuff all at once like CJ’s doing now.

  6. Gwai Lo – Yeah that Dick letter was eeriely prophetic about a movie he didn’t live to see. Except about it being a “major commercial success.” Though I suppose after 28 years, the movie is now a cash cow. So he was right.

    my favorite is the Hunter S. Thompson letter to a studio that couldn’t get his RUM DIARY off the ground. Such a brutal smackdown with wit and vinegar, starting off “Okay you lazy bitch…”

    http://www.lettersofnote.com/2009/09/okay-you-lazy-bitch.html

  7. Jareth Cutestory

    March 20th, 2010 at 6:13 pm

    You’d never know from his scowl that The Man With No Name has rather nice penmanship.

  8. What a polite young man. Who says nice guys finish last?

  9. RRA – Wow. That HST letter is fucking SAVAGE. I read more of the letters on this site, did you see the one with Harlan Ellison chewing out a fan for wasting his time with the need to respond?

  10. Gwai Lo – Harlan Ellison being a dick? Will wonders ever cease?

    Man I just read that Mark Chapman letter, calmly asking someone the auction worth of that album he got John Lennon to autograph before murdering him. Imagine getting such a letter in the mailbox.

  11. Jareth Cutestory

    March 20th, 2010 at 8:53 pm

    That Philip K. Dick letter is really neat. I’m kind of glad he didn’t live to see the movie fail in the theaters. His optimism was well placed, just 20 years premature.

  12. Jareth Cutestory

    March 20th, 2010 at 8:57 pm

    Gwai Lo: Thompson totally showed Christian Bale that there’s no reason why your insane tirade can’t be articulately crafted.

    “I’d much rather deal with a Live asshole than a Dead worm with No Light in his Eyes….”

    Wow.

  13. Here is just released doozy of a letter from Mr. Redbelt himself, David Mamet.

    http://www.movieline.com/2010/03/david-mamets-memo-to-the-writers-of-the-unit.php

  14. Dude, Clint was almost Superman AND James Bond! Maybe the next Star Trek movie should have the crew accidently teleporting to a parallel universe where that actually happened, and is now 100 times more badass then this one.

  15. Brendan – Or in another universe, we had a President Eastwood.

  16. Gwai Lo’s link is definitely something Rob Zombie and his crew should examine before trying to film anything else.

  17. Mouth – Add this other memo: “Rob, quit making remakes. They’re a waste of your time and talent.”

  18. Out of respect for dissenting opinions, I’ve avoided posting my bile on The Devil’s Rejects review.  I’m like Turbo in Undisputed 3 when Boyka convinces him it’s okay to run for freedom since it wouldn’t be a fair fight at that moment to prove himself the 2nd best prison fighter even though at first Turbo wants to fight anyway cause he’s honorable & loyal to his beliefs about asskicking but then he takes the advice and runs to the woods.  Or I’m a passive-aggressive, confrontation-avoiding pussy and I don’t want my input to sully the blank comments section and Vern & his audience’s enjoyment of the movie.    

    Zombie is the worst film director today.  Yes, worse than Bay.  I genuinely do not understand any of the positive criticism he receives.  

    Anyfuckingbody can score some chopped up, slowed down footage of ugly, foulmouthed people with some kind of guitar-based music and claim that it looks cool or that it’s a fucking artistic statement, and anyone can do this and still be a derivative halfwit operating the video software that comes with any $250 digicam these days.  

    Zombie’s films have little to no plot, neither in the entireties of each of the films nor within each scene.  Rather, we hear inane, profane conversations that Mr. Mamet would surely immediately scorn as useless dreck that fails to advance the narrative.  I can’t be the only person here who believes the scripts for Zombie’s films were penned by a hitherto under-stimulated 13 year old, fresh out of Catholic school for the summer, who just discovered Old Milwaukee and R-rated movies.  Or maybe there’s just a cheap but appropriate Alabama joke here somewhere.  

    Anyway, it’s frustrating since I share love for The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 and some other shit that’s aimed for sicko audiences, but I have a burning desire to kindly lobotomize Rob Zombie, or at least surgically scramble his filmmaker lobe.  

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