Imagine being one of the two young songwriter/lyricists who are invited to an imposing Hollywood mansion to meet with movie legend Gloria Swanson. Greeting you in all her movie star glamour, Gloria pitches her idea for a Broadway musical based on her starring role in the brilliant movie “Sunset Boulevard”. Three months later, your musical BOULEVARD is ready for the big time. Unfortunately, that version of the musical never gets produced. But, in a delicious twist, the real-life story of the love triangle between Gloria and the two young songwriters (Dickson Hughes and Richard Stapley) ends up being a mirror image of the plot of “Sunset Boulevard”.
In Ken’s thoroughly entertaining Top Docs conversation with filmmaker Jeffrey Schwarz (“BOULEVARD! A Hollywood Story”), Jeffrey shares all the juicy details of unearthing the amazing story of these three unlikely collaborators. How much fun was it for Jeffrey to go on this creative journey about a movie classic he has seen “7,000 times”? Who were Dickson Hughes and Richard Shapley? How did their passionate but closeted relationship blossom into a professional partnership that led to Gloria’s door? In what ways was Richard’s acting career — and life — diminished by having to maintain a macho image that couldn’t account for who he really was? And will the “real” Gloria Swanson finally step forward out of the shadow of Norma Desmond? For all you “wonderful people out there in the dark,” we give you the Top Docs interview with Jeffrey Schwarz!
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