PAY TO PLAY!
Sad to hear that Haji, co-star of one of my favorite movies of the sixties Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill!, passed away recently. I really liked her in this movie, but had an unpleasant dealing with her about 15 years ago. I contacted her through her web site to ask if I could interview her for my book Drive-in Dream Girls. I sent her a letter and she called me where she reamed me out for wanting to take advantage of her to make money off her name. She demanded $500 for an interview. I kindly declined.
She was not the first starlet I encountered who wanted some dough. One made me sign an agreement stating that if I paid anyone for an interview she would be compensated for the same. Another too demanded a fee, which I passed on. I could understand where these ladies were coming from, but it was not like I was doing a fancy coffee table book for Random House. I was writing an interview book for a small press and let’s be honest the interest in my 1960s starlet interview books is very niche.
One was very sweet when I interviewed her for my book and we stayed in touch. When she told me she would be doing an autograph convention just when my book would be out and I asked if I could sit with her to sell some books, she went off on me excusing me of trying to take advantage of her. Goodbye to you!
The saddest encounter for me was with an actress from my book Glamour Girls of Sixties Hollywood. She called me from a pay phone in Palm Desert pleading for a fee to be interviewed. I was stunned and told her I wish I could help but I make a point of not paying. It really shook me up hearing the desperation in her voice. I hope today she got her act together and is doing well today.