By RAHNA MAUGHAN
Certainly not the
human dynamo named Cassavetes, who "only" has genuine talent,
enthusiasm and drive to burn
Though Mike Todd
wasn't handing out jobs the day John Cassavetes walked into his office,
he was giving advice.
"In order to be a success in this business," Todd cautioned the young
actor, "you've got to know more than anyone else."
Well sir, Cassavetes hasn't been the same since. He cherished those
kindly words and applied himself to the Herculean task. Spending about
16 hours a day learning every angle there is to know about show business,
he's managed to do himself and adviser Todd proud. In the last four
years, Cassavetes has accounted for about 90 television roles and four
pictures: "The Night Holds Terror," "Crime In The Streets," "Edge Of
The City," and "Fever Tree." Most of his work had the
critics doing handsprings. Sandwiched between all this expolsive activity,
found time to start a new actors' workshop called Shadows, Inc.
John, here with actress-wife Gena Rowlands, "is the place where
a man can let down the guard on his weakness."
should have called to remind him you'd be here at 12:30. John has so
many things on his mind, sometimes he's inclined to be forgetful. If
wife didn't lay out clothes for him. . . ." McEndree shrugged off the rest.
One of the things
Cassavetes might have had on his mind right around then could very
easily have been the long-term contract he recently signed with MGM. In
his first picture, "Three Guns," he'll be a sort of Western delinquent,
playing Robert Taylor's hot-headed kid brother.
When the red-hot item finally catapulted into the office, an hour and a
half late, McEndree and Burt Lane, Cassavetes partner in Shadows, Inc.,
had done a complete job of spreading the happy word which had marinated
with their tour of the little theatre, and introducing the case— no
one looked older than about 20— of the experimental picture Cassavetes
continued on page 20
"I come equipped
with all this energy," Cassavetes will admit with a large hint
of pride. "It's the trend these days to worry about overdoing.
Take it easy! Relax! Count to ten! I can't be bothered with all that
nonsense. There's never been anything wrong with me that work wouldn't
At 27, in thriving
health, the lean, dark Cassavetes has every reason to be impatient.
He thinks he knows what's wrong with
entertainment in general, and if it were up to him, another day won't
go by before some radical changes are made. He refuses to believe people
deliberately turn on a television set, or go to the movies to see a
While we had been
waiting for Cassavetes to appear in the small high-ceilinged business
office painted a dull, uninspired brown, Maurice McEndree,
Shadows, Inc. producer, explained Cassavetes has an amazing effect
on everyone he meets. Like a twister, he picks everything up in his
path and sweeps it away with him. "He has so much genuine talen, enthusiasm
and drive." McEndree looked at his watch, shook his head.