Read the disaster artist my life inside the room the greatest bad movie ever made by Greg Sestero Tom Bissell Online


The hilarious and inspiring story of how a mysterious misfit got past every roadblock in the Hollywood system to achieve success on his own terms: a $6 million cinematic catastrophe called The Room.Nineteen-year-old Greg Sestero met Tommy Wiseau at an acting school in San Francisco. Wiseau’s scenes were rivetingly wrong, yet Sestero, hypnotized by such uninhibited acting,The hilarious and inspiring story of how a mysterious misfit got past every roadblock in the Hollywood system to achieve success on his own terms: a $6 million cinematic catastrophe called The Room.Nineteen-year-old Greg Sestero met Tommy Wiseau at an acting school in San Francisco. Wiseau’s scenes were rivetingly wrong, yet Sestero, hypnotized by such uninhibited acting, thought, “I have to do a scene with this guy.” That impulse changed both of their lives. Wiseau seemed never to have read the rule book on interpersonal relationships (or the instruc­tions on a bottle of black hair dye), yet he generously offered to put the aspiring actor up in his LA apart­ment. Sestero’s nascent acting career first sizzled, then fizzled, resulting in Wiseau’s last-second offer to Sestero of costarring with him in The Room, a movie Wiseau wrote and planned to finance, produce, and direct—in the parking lot of a Hollywood equipment-rental shop.Wiseau spent $6 million of his own money on his film, but despite the efforts of the disbelieving (and frequently fired) crew and embarrassed (and fre­quently fired) actors, the movie made no sense. Nevertheless Wiseau rented a Hollywood billboard featuring his alarming headshot and staged a red carpet premiere. The Room made $1800 at the box office and closed after two weeks. One reviewer said that watching The Room was like “getting stabbed in the head.”The Disaster Artist is Greg Sestero’s laugh-out-loud funny account of how Tommy Wiseau defied every law of artistry, business, and friendship to make “the Citizen Kane of bad movies” (Entertainment Weekly), which is now an international phenomenon, with Wiseau himself beloved as an oddball celebrity. Written with award-winning journalist Tom Bissell, The Disaster Artist is an inspiring tour de force that reads like a page-turning novel, an open-hearted portrait of an enigmatic man who will improbably capture your heart....

Title : the disaster artist my life inside the room the greatest bad movie ever made
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ISBN : 18902905
Format Type : Kindle Edition
Number of Pages : 289 Pages
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the disaster artist my life inside the room the greatest bad movie ever made Reviews

  • Patricia A
    2019-05-23 12:15

    Ha ha ha. What a story, Mark.

  • Brigid ✩ Cool Ninja Sharpshooter ✩
    2019-05-07 12:21

    For those of you who aren't familiar with The Room, it is a glorious piece of American cinema directed, written, and produced by the handsome devil Tommy Wiseau––who also plays the lead role in the film, naturally.… Okay, okay. So basically, this film is often regarded as being one of the absolute worst movies of all time. (Maybe only rivaled by the equally-ridiculous "Troll 2.") And Tommy Wiseau looks like a creepy muppet. That said, I'm a huge fan of The Room because I'm a sucker for hilariously bad movies. There is nothing quite like The Room, and I'm not sure how to describe it to those of you who haven't seen it. It follows a pretty basic plot about a man named Johnny who is engaged to a woman named Lisa. What Johnny doesn't know is that Lisa is cheating on him with his best friend, Mark. And the story unravels from there, chronicling how Lisa and Mark's betrayal slowly ruins Johnny's life.Sounds pretty straightforward, right? And yet … there's something quite special about this movie. What sets this film apart from other flat-out bad movies is that every moment of it is completely ridiculous. Every scene, every line is just so odd that all you can do is sit there and laugh uneasily the entire time. Just some of the memorable lines:Other WTF highlights include:- A weird man-child character named Denny who lives in the same building as Johnny and Lisa who they've "adopted" … kind of … ?- A drug dealer shows up and tries to kill Denny––which is never addressed again after it happens.- Lisa's mother casually mentions she's dying of cancer, to which Lisa shows no reaction and no one ever mentions it again.- Johnny, Mark, Denny, and some of their other friends play football in tuxedos in an alleyway for no reason. I could go on and on, but I think I'd have to just describe the entire movie scene-by-scene because like 90% of the scenes are completely irrelevant to the main plot and don't accomplish anything––and are never acknowledged again after they transpire.Anyway, I found out maybe a year ago that Greg Sestero (who plays Mark in the movie) was going to write a book about his experience, and I was ecstatic. There are so many mysteries surrounding this movie, and I was thrilled to find out I might finally get some answers out of Sestero––especially because Tommy Wiseau himself tends to avoid answering questions about it and usually just says something like:I checked for updates on this book regularly, but there seemed to not be much word about it anywhere until a few months before it was set to come out. Then I finally found out it was coming out on my birthday and I was like, "HELL YES."I eagerly awaited the release of this book, and it was well worth the wait. I expected it to be a fun read––maybe kind of stupid, but fun. I'm happy to say that this book far exceeded my expectations and took a different approach than I anticipated.What I feared about this book was that it would end up being 200 pages making fun of how insane Tommy Wiseau is. And while there are definitely a plethora of moments describing Tommy's unusual habits and qualities, I was glad that the book didn't antagonize or mock him to the extent I thought it might. The book isn't just about how crazy Tommy Wiseau and his movie are. It's also a pretty eye-opening look into what it's like to be a struggling actor. As well as chronicling his experience acting in The Room, Greg Sestero also shares his stories about trying to make it as a young actor––the frustrating processes of auditioning, trying to get an agent, etc. It also focuses a lot on the strange and unlikely––but often oddly touching––friendship between Sestero and Wiseau.BFFs <3Don't worry, there are plenty of hilarious anecdotes about the filming of the movie––things that had me laughing harder than I've laughed at a book in a long time. (For example, one of Wiseau's original plans for the film included a part in which Johnny's car "flies off the roof and into the sky," to indicate that "maybe Johnny is a vampire." … OMG I CAN'T EVEN. I. WHAT.)But in the end, I found this book to actually be quite bittersweet. While it's hilarious, it also shows Tommy Wiseau as a man who genuinely wanted to make an amazing film. Especially learning about some of his horrific life experiences, and seeing how much time and effort he put into the movie, it is quite sad in some ways that his film ended up being such a laughing stock. Of course, he still got he wanted in an unexpected way––because the film does have hundreds of fans, and even ten years after its release, it still has a massive cult following. So, I loved this book. It's hilarious, it's touching … and I learned a lot about one of my favorite bad movies.And of course I can't end this review without saying:

  • Roxane
    2019-05-11 13:06

    This was a fascinating book about the making of the worst movie I have ever seen, The Room. And in reading this book I learned that The Room was made with all seriousness and not as, like, a parody of a bad movie. At the center of the narrative is Tommy Wiseau, a man who is secretive about his past, and everything in his life but who also wants to be a star, who wants, like all of us, to be seen and understood and loved. This book is fucking hilarious, told through the eyes of Tommy’s friend and an actor in The Room, Greg Sestero (and his co-writer). Greg is a little smug but given the travails he shares throughout, that’s kind of understandable. But this book is also heartbreaking and I found myself filled with tenderness for Tommy who is so misguided, and so deluded but who is, also, incredibly committed to an artistic vision he has little control of. Really, this is a story about loneliness and earnestness and The American Dream.

  • David
    2019-05-11 12:10

    Optimal mental health—if such a thing there be—probably lies somewhere roundabout midway on the self-awareness continuum, but often without thinking, people assume that 'not giving a fuck what other people think' is a sort of modern virtue, suggesting confidence, strength of character, and (if nothing else) the sheer convenience of living only for oneself. If we stop and scrutinize the concept, however, we soon realize that it's an ideal sorely in conflict with the fundamental nature of our lives: we are social beings, enmeshed in countless relationships with others, whether they are close friends and family members or strangers we find ourselves driving 75 MPH beside on the highway—both of us trusting that the other won't suddenly veer into our lane. We don't even consider these kinds of relationships because they are usually automatic; except maybe once in a while we marvel at the fact that we've survived however many years without some asshole harboring a death wish driving head-on into our car, killing us instantly. In the end there are just so many tacit (and fragile) rules holding this thing called society together.What does this have to do with anything, you wonder. Well, The Disaster Artist by actor Greg Sestero and writer Tom Bissell happens to be about a self-styled actor-director named Tommy Wiseau, who, if the particulars of this book are accurate, may be the most un-self-aware person I have ever heard of (who is not a diagnosed psychotic). Wiseau's magnum opus (and only opus) The Room from 2003 provides more than enough evidence to support the case that the man has absolutely no understanding of how the world works and how he fits into it. (If you are unfamiliar with the film, I recommend it to you. It is without a doubt one of the worst films ever made—which of course makes it more entertaining than many, many films that are objectively speaking better than it. This 'highlight' reel will give you some indication what the film's like.)I'm not implying that anyone should be limited by social conventions—but neither should one perhaps flout these conventions without understanding them... or at least being aware of them. It's as if Wiseau were dropped on the planet earth by an alien spacecraft and his only preparation for life on this planet was reading the Cliff's Notes on human civilization. What else can you say about a strange-looking man of indeterminate age and origin who imagines that suddenly he can decide to be an actor, a screenwriter, and a film director without any of the necessary skills or qualifications? This is a man who is unable to assimilate normal casual human behavior in his day-to-day life; how can he hope to emulate other behaviors? Lacking much empathy in his real life, how will he empathize with the characters he will play? Can such a level of narcissism even crawl out from under the weight of its own immediacy?Well, one logical solution is for the narcissist to write the role for himself—and to make that role as approximate to his own peculiar personality as is possible. He can go even one step further: he can position that self-characterization in a world that is entirely contrived to express his own childishly narcissistic agenda. As Sestero/Bissell points out in the book, one commentator said that The Room was essential a $6 million daydream in which an adolescent mentality (i.e., Wiseau's) gets to act out his suicide and watch his friends mourn him and regret how poorly they've treated him. Was there any petulant teenager who didn't have this fantasy at some time? But not all of us had millions of dollars to pour into a vanity project that would literalize the fantasy. The Disaster Artist is told from the perspective of Wiseau's co-actor in The Room and erstwhile friend Greg Sestero, a pretty-boy actor and former model who is (I believe) the only actor in the film that had a professional credit to his name. Sestero and Wiseau made for an odd couple. Sestero was young, tall, blond, and handsome while Wiseau was an eccentric raven-haired European, trollish in appearance and significantly older—although he would never reveal his actual age. The two met in acting class in San Francisco. Sestero was fascinated by the oddball Wiseau, whose acting was so bad that it beggared belief. After all, it's not easy to be that ostentatiously awful. But Wiseau was, and Sestero was intrigued. Gradually, as Sestero gets to know him better, Wiseau becomes all the more mysterious. He won't discuss his past—or what he does for a living—or where he gets all his money—or where he was born—or how old he is. Sestero, whose mother is French, is convinced he is not French, based on his accent, but his accent is strangely indeterminate—a mongrel accent that's impossible to pinpoint. Naturally, Sestero's girlfriend, his mother, and his friends are all leery of Wiseau and advise him to steer clear.As Sestero enjoys some limited measure of success in his career, their relationship becomes strained. Wiseau grows increasingly jealous of Sestero's auditions and his new friends. At one point when Sestero is dozing off on the sofa one night, Wiseau makes an ambiguous comment about sharing a bed. Is Wiseau in love with Sestero? Does he want to be Sestero? Suddenly Wiseau decides he's going to be an actor too—despite the fact that he's too old, too unattractive, and too untalented to embark upon a career. When he grows despondent from his lack of success in the acting biz, Wiseau elects to write, direct, and star in his own (self-financed) movie The Room, which is not only the self-aggrandizing vanity project to end all vanity projects; it's also a sort of revenge on everyone who rejected him—and even on Sestero himself.The Disaster Artist surprised me. I expected it to have a lot of interesting gossip, but I didn't actually expect it to be a good book. And it is. If you need any more convincing, I stayed up until 3 AM last night finishing it, and I was so tired this morning that I took a vacation day at work. It's more than a behind-the-scenes tell-all, it's also an engrossing character study. I don't know to what extent this book is Sestero's and to what extent it's Bissell's, but Sestero's first-person persona is likable and generous to a fault, as he navigates the unforgiving and unending road to stardom and exposes this odd little man named Tommy Wiseau, who took a shortcut. Ironically, The Room did make Wiseau a 'star' of sorts, in the sense that infamy is a parallel route to celebrity.

  • Kevin Kelsey
    2019-04-24 14:59

    Tommy Wiseau is a weird, weird dude who spent $6 million of his own money to make a terrible, terrible movie.

  • Madeleine
    2019-04-29 15:13

    (This review was originally written for and posted at the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography's site. Again, I preordered this bad boy well before I knew I'd be writing about it for anyone other than myself and GR.)In the long-running tradition of so-bad-it's-good entertainment, 2003's The Room is a fairly recent but impressively groan-worthy addition. Its low-budget approach to visual effects, a script held together by non sequiturs and the wealth of glaring continuity errors make it either instantly derided or ironically charming, depending on the viewer's stomach for shoddy craftsmanship and clueless defiance of cinematic etiquette. For the enviably/unfortunately uninitiated, The Room is yet another take on the love-triangle template, offering up one more tale of a fellow whose quietly mundane existence will be predictably turned upside down by the barely concealed affair between his fiancée and best friend, the latter played by Greg Sestero, who also served as the flick's line producer. What sets The Room apart is its enthusiastic departure from the conventions that make a movie watchable. The acting is uneven, as even the more talented cast members could only do so much with the ridiculous script and inept director. Dramatis personae inexplicably come and go with all the finesse of a drunken hippopotamus, and they cling to and then disregard their motives with similarly contrary abandon. The dialogue is wooden at best and hilariously incoherent at worst. Plot lines are introduced, run with and cast off without resolution. In short, this is the very stuff that cult followings are made to immortalize, and the audience participation that screenings both public and private invite help to reshape this train wreck into sublime chaos. While this book heralds itself as being Sestero's life inside The Room, The Disaster Artist reads more as Sestero's attempt to make sense of both writer/producer/director/lead actor Tommy Wiseau, depicted as an independently wealthy manchild who houses more insecurities than does a comprehensive guide to mental maladies, and his self-funded, self-promoted and self-delusional labor of love. Sestero, with enough writing assistance from journalist Tom Bissell to warrant a co-authorship, explores the torturous trajectory of The Room from nascence to its opening night, as well as the strained but symbiotic friendship between Wiseau and Sestero. Sestero's own faltering forays into Hollywood are chronicled as a sort of apologetic explanation for why he stuck with a project he clearly expected to fizzle into obscurity and stuck by a man who gave him both a place to live and an opportunity for work in exchange for the mind-bogglingly creepy way that Wiseau leeched off Sestero--the more successful actor and infinitely more attractive and youthful of the two--as if Sestero's good looks and acting chops were things he could possess for himself via sheer proximity.Much of the book is devoted to recounting Wiseau's especially memorable bouts of weirdness, jealousies and general inability to function as an adult: Goading Sestero into nearly abandoning him just to prove that he has the power to offend; producing a demo reel fashioned nearly blow-for-blow from a scene in one of Sestero's other movies; spectacularly failing to remember the very lines he wrote; subjecting the whole of The Room's creative team to his unnecessary and gratuitously filmed nudity; spending extravagantly on the film when he feels it's in the best interest of his vision but skimping on paychecks and other details he arbitrarily dismisses as minor.To me, if not for a friend's firsthand assurance that Sestero is a genuinely likable guy who regards his accidental ascent to pseudo-fame with equal parts wry humor and gratitude, the book's tone--that of a young actor desperate to make it in L.A., whose naivete, curiosity and willingness to look beyond his vampiric guardian angel's downright hostile quirks all work together to cement an uneasy friendship that barely survives a disastrous attempt at living together--would be off-puttingly glib. Wiseau is painted as the perennial (though unintentional) sad clown who would be a tragic figure if not for his nigh unflappable hubris. But Sestero does, to his credit, try to soften his description of a man who has clearly suffered some obsessively guarded psychological setback that has seemingly forever grounded him in the defensive, combative mindset of a newly minted teenager. An example: All attempts to inject a hint of unscripted coherence in Wiseau's film are met with such disproportionate resistance and unfounded accusations that it's unsurprising the film went through several incarnations of its cast and crew; Sestero attempts to explain that, to the best of his understanding, Wiseau sees all attempts at changing his project for the better as mutinous trespasses, a threat to the tenuous authority he has purchased with his self-propelled picture. Even in the instances where Sestero seems inexplicably passive in his inability to assume control when Wiseau has lost all touch with reality, there is a strong undercurrent of desperately gleaned sympathy that keep his remembered interactions buoyantly surreal rather than needlessly cruel.Still, the bulk of the book's humor is at Wiseau's expense, as it is impossible to read about his diva-sized antics, tantrums, paranoia and obstinate refusal to divulge personal details without cackling the nervous guffaws of tension-eroding disbelief because Wiseau's fiery outbursts are in no way proportional to their triggers. The Sunset Boulevard and Talented Mr. Ripley quotes that begin each chapter and, later, the copious nods to both films just may be the most perfect encapsulation of Wiseau within these pages. This is a man who is painted as sleepwalking through life, who literally cannot help how bizarre he is, who rewrites his own personal history as he sees beneficial.The lingering effects of The Disaster Artist are an increased sense of respect for the hapless players at the mercy of Wiseau's deranged puppet master as well as a nagging suspicion that $6 million can't quite buy talent but it sure can stack the odds in one's favor if one is hellbent on crafting a blockbuster from incoherence and birthing a star from a woeful dearth of thespian proficiency, reality be damned.

  • Jenna
    2019-04-25 10:59

    I can remember when I was living in Los Angeles and seeing a billboard advertising for "The Room" movie, and there being an RSVP with a phone number. The billboard was there forever, but I had forgotten about it until I ordered the DVD online and saw the same image on the cover. It was funny to learn that Tommy Wiseau (whom the story is mostly centered on) paid for this prime billboard spot for five years...yes, FIVE YEARS! At $5,000 per week for the advertising space times fives years, I believe that adds up to $1.3 Million and it all came out of his pocket as well as the cost for the movie ($6M) and only earned $1,800 at the box office.I was reading an article where James Franco was listing his three favorite books of 2014 and my interest was peaked when he mentioned this book. He said that Seth Rogan had bought the rights to make a film about it, or something to that nature. I decided to read the premise and I knew I had to purchase it once I read all of the praise it had received and what it was about. Not only that, but I ordered the DVD(as stated above) so I could really jump into the experience and even had a friend watch along with me. I swear we laughed so hard that my stomach hurt the next day! The movie was so intriguing that my friend also bought the book. Although we purchased the book we broke down and ordered the audiobook as well, of which I would recommend because Greg Sestero (narrator and co-author)really nails Tommy's accent and makes the experience that much more enjoyable.So what's it about? Well, basically it is about what most consider the worst movie of all time. It's terrible! It's so terrible that it's good, in a comedy sense. The movie was directed, produced, written, and starred Tommy Wiseau, a man of mystery. He speaks with a thick eastern European accent and has an incredible amount of money that one can only speculate where it came from considering he was poor until his thirties. Tommy has a love for America and the film industry and knows that the only way he will ever star in a movie is by making one himself and on his own dime. Tommy has a mindset that his film is spectacular and worthy of an Oscar. It's not. This movie has plot holes galore, the acting is terrible, it goes in way too many directions, a random actor appears at the end that hasn't been in the entire movie and who in the hell he is was never implied. There is a scene where four friends dress in tuxedo's and throw a football around...why? Who knows. In another one, they go to a coffee shop where we see various people ordering drinks and then he sits and talks with his friend about basically nothing. My favorite was when two characters just squat down in the doorway and have a conversation. He thrived on scenes that would normally be cut out of a movie because it adds absolutely nothing to the movie or doesn't progress it in any way. It basically makes no sense and has zero continuity, but this book helps give some idea into the making of the script and its origins. Afterward, I actually wanted to watch it again and again with a new perspective. I've seriously never laughed so hard and the whole experience of watching the movie and reading the book was incredibly fun. I highly recommend for those with a well-rounded sense of humor.

  • Paul Bryant
    2019-05-16 15:57

    “Maybe I am too unique”- Tommy WiseauThe Room is a popular choice for the best worst movie ever*. It was a GIGANTIC VANITY PROJECT bankrolled by, produced by, starring, written and directed by a guy called Tommy Wiseau who was more than a little odd.He was a guy in his 40s, long dyed black hair, looked like one of those heavy metal band guys who’ve been doing drugs and staying up late for 35 solid years, his face looked facelifted, puffy and like he never went outside and slightly melted, and he had a weird voice with an unplaceable European accent so that English sounded like his third language, he’d got this mangled syntax and every well-known phrase would come out wrong; and in the movie, he’s like an alien trying hopelessly to pass as human, his reactions slow, off-centre, he chuckles inappropriately, his lines are all in this monotonous singsong, he’s mesmerizingly terrible. You think : there’s something fairly wrong with that guy. In The Room the other main male character is played by the author of this book Greg Sestero, who was a young pretty blonde cardboard cutout actor wannabe when the story opens,and also when it closes, because if you check your IMDB young Greg has hardly had what you might call a career in movies. I think Greg’s mom was right. IRRATIONAL, DIM-WITTED AND ALL-ROUND CREEPYThere are three stories told in this book – first, the painful, unfunny and quite dull story of how Greg tried to become a Hollywood actor – headshots, agents, blagging, auditions, managers, callbacks, all the stuff made great fun of in the character of Joey in Friends, and here it’s so not that much fun. Then, in an acting class Greg befriends the older weirdo Tommy, and this friendship is story number two. It’s probably the best part, a friendship barely recognisable as such by Greg, until, reluctantly, it dawns on him that he actually really likes Tommy. Who appears to have no other friends. The third story is how they made The Room, and this does have a certain humour to it; but it turns out that jeering at egomaniacs is not that funny when the egomaniac is a sympathetic character. Because however irrational, frankly dim-witted and all-round creepy Tommy is, he’s not a bad man. He’s a sad man. He’s lonely. No one cares about him, he’s lost. And he’s picked up this absurd dream of being an actor from somewhere; and he made a lot of money selling knock-down schmatter in San Francisco; and now he decides that if Hollywood will never like him, he’ll be his own Hollywood. I found I couldn’t laugh heartily at his antics, the laughs died in my throat. OUTSIDER ART“We have moment-to-moment acting in my film. Words are secondary.”- Tommy WiseauOutsider Art : that’s what The Room is, like the Watts Towers, the recordings of Daniel Johnson or the beach sculptures at Rothéneuf by the Abbé Fouré. It’s by a person who does not recognise the agreed-upon common-or-garden reality most of us subscribe to. It’s not knowing, unlike your John Waters or your Russ Meyer, not deliberately bad like Pink Flamingos or Beyond the Valley of the Dolls. It’s raw. Most people will laugh at it. I did a couple of times. It’s excruciating; but most of it is, unfortunately, only bad, rather than so-bad-it’s-good. Well, its fans disagree with me, they laugh till their sides split. I don’t have a good explanation for this, but I just saw a movie called Satan’s Little Helper, and that was in the same badness ballpark as The Room, but without any of the technical ineptitude. SLH had all the professionalism of any modern low budget horror movie – it was its ideas which were awful, plus having an unbearable kid as the main role who did most of the talking throughout the movie – I was praying he’d be the first victim, but no such luck. Other eyegogglingly eptless nightmares I have seen or failed to make through in recent times : Suspiria, Switchblade Romance, The Woman, The Counselor, Brick and Zak and Miri Make a Porno. In all of these cases the badness comes from the horrid inhumane or stupid ideas in the movie. They’re all technically good. But The Room has no technical competence. There’s no coherence in the script. Many plot points are mentioned once & once only. There are continuity errors by the dozen. All the actors are first timers or are embarrassed to be there. There is no relief to be had from this relentless tsunami of crapness on every possible filmic level from minute one to minute last. A SCENE FROM THE ROOMJohnny : I never hit you. You shoulda hed any secrets from me. I’m your future husband.Lisa : You sure about that? Maybe I’ll change my mind. Johnny : Don’t talk like that. Whaddoo mean?Lisa : What do you think? Women change their minds all the time.Johnny : (Throws head back and runs hands through hair in a gesture of carefree merriment) Haha. You mus be kidding aren’t you.Lisa : Look, I don’t wanna talk about it. I’m going to go upstairs and wash up and go to bed. Johnny : How durr you tok to me like dat. (Pushes her back onto the couch). You should tell me everything.Lisa : I can’t talk right now. Johnny : Why Lisa WHY Lisa please talk to me PLEASE . You’re part of my life, you’re everything. I could not go on without you Lisa.Lisa : You’re scaring me. (He’s scaring everyone at this point.)Johnny : I never hit you. YOU’RE TEARING ME APART LISA!Lisa : (Scared and hostile) Why are you so hysterical?Johnny : (Pushing her back on the couch a second time) Do you ustellife? (note : I think he means Do you understand life?) Do you? (Now Lisa finally gets up off the couch without being pushed back, third time lucky, & walks up the stair, but pauses and turns to Johnny.)Lisa : (Sudden change of tone to warm and friendly) Don’t worry about it. Everything will be alright. Johnny : You drive me crazy. Lisa : Goodnight Johnny.Johnny : Don’ worraboudit. I still love you. Goodnight Lisa. A QUOTE FROM JULIETTE DANIELLE (who played Lisa)It’s hard to remember a time before The RoomI know what you mean, Juliette!*It’s currently on Youtube so you can join in all the fun.

  • emma
    2019-05-09 17:56

    I was going to write a full review of this, but really everything I has to say boils down to the following list of directions.One: Watch the movie “The Room.” (IMMEDIATELY.)Two: Read this book.Three: See “The Disaster Artist.”Bonus points if you choose to listen to either of the How Did This Get Made? podcast episodes about it. Double bonus points if you, like me, develop a crush on Jason Mantzoukas following the above.That is all.---review to come

  • Nenia ✨ Queen of Literary Trash, Protector of Out-of-Print Gems, Khaleesi of Bodice Rippers, Mother of Smut, the Unrepentant, Breaker of Convention ✨ Campbell
    2019-05-19 15:15

    Instagram || Twitter || Facebook || Amazon || PinterestVox did a video about The Room recently with the co-author of this book, Tom Bissell, called Why people keep watching the worst movie ever made. He said of it in the interview: "[The Room] is like a movie made by an alien who has never seen a movie but has had movies thoroughly explained to him." That sentence is scarily appropriate, and goes a long way towards explaining why people thought this book was important enough that it not only deserved a book, but then a second movie based on that book. The story behind the movie's inception is almost as bizarre as the movie itself, if not more so. In his memoir, Greg Sestero writes about how he met the creator of The Room, Tommy Wiseau in an acting class, intrigued by his odd behavior and pirate-like appearance. The book chronicles Sestero's own rise from minimum wage worker and discouraged aspiring actor to a B-list actor with a couple of serious roles under his belt. Meanwhile, in the background like the proverbial elephant, lurks The Room, and interwoven with Sestero's own narrative is the narrative of what it was like to be behind the set The Room..And, of course, Wiseau's own narrative arc, as well.Wiseau is one of those characters who is larger-than-life (hence the movie). At times he's hilarious and endearing, at other times, creepy and terrifying. His mood shifts made him difficult to work with and sometimes delayed production, because he had a vision and God help anyone who stood in the way of that. He basically funded this entire movie out of pocket, from a bottomless money hole that led some of the cast members to believe he had illicit ties to the mob. His history remains largely a mystery, although Sestero shares some of the details that he pieced together from the rare anecdote Wiseau thought fit to regale him with, and it seems like he was from an Eastern European country and became wealthy via the American Dream, by starting as a toy-seller in Fisherman's Wharf. Apparently his name is a corruption of Oiseau, which is French for "bird" (because the toys he sold were shaped like bird), although Wiseau himself does not appear to be French.I really enjoyed this book a lot. It's darkly funny and utterly ridiculous. According to Vox, movies like The Room fall into a category of movies called "paracinema," because they're not typical movies and they are not really viewed by a typical audience. The Room, in particular, is a trash film - which I think is probably a nice way of saying "s***." It's funny, because while I was reading this, I was thinking about this documentary I watched a few years ago called Best Worst Movie (2009), which chronicles another trash film: Troll 2 (1990). I watched Troll 2 (although I haven't yet seen the room), and it's about as terrible as you might expect... but there is an art to that awfulness. The timing somehow works out to be so wrong, that rather than being scary, it ends up like a comedy.My Wiki-hopping ended up taking me to a page of movies that are considered to be among the worst ever made. Troll 2 and The Room are both on it, but so are a number of movies that I actually like, such as The Avengers (not the superhero one), Batman & Robin, and Glitter. The Avengers is actually my favorite movie, B&R is my favorite Batman movie, and Glitter was my favorite movie when I was a middle schooler and didn't know any better. Showgirls is on there, as well, but Showgirls is basically the NC-17 version of Glitter, so as you can imagine, I also liked that movie, too. Apparently I have s*** taste in films. (But, again, according to that Vox article, liking trash films is apparently correlated with higher intelligence because they are "subversive." Which, now that I think about it, might go a long way towards explaining my attraction to bodice rippers and pulp.)THE DISASTER ARTIST is the perfect length, in my opinion, and does a nice job balancing both Sestero's and Wiseau's stories. The humor is great, snappy, and witty, peppered with odd-ball humor that fits the subject. Sestero details his tempestuous relationship with Wiseau, and how he slowly but inevitably got dragged in on this crazy project along with the rest of the cast. You also get cool behind-the-scenes trivia, such as why certain lines were said, or why the outfits they're wearing are so weird, or why that one table in the living room is covered with framed pictures of spoons.If you're at all interested in this movie, I highly suggest you read THE DISASTER ARTIST. Watching the movie isn't even necessary to enjoy it (I didn't), although I'm sure it helps. But if you want to feel like you've watched the movie without going through the effort, I urge you to watch CinemaSins's video, Everything Wrong With The Room In 8 Minutes Or Less.What a crazy, crazy story.4 stars

  • Simone
    2019-04-23 18:06

    Unlike the people rating a book they haven't read, I was fortunate enough to get my hands on an advance copy and have in fact read it, and as an avid fan of the 2003 cult hit, 'The Room' (I've seen it around 35 times) I can assure you it's everything I hoped it would be! Greg Sestero, star of the Room and Tommy Wiseau's right hand man (and line producer) reveals to us some of the greatest mysteries of the cinematic universe: how did this movie get made, and what is the deal with Tommy Wiseau? It switches back and forth between the history of Sestero’s relationship with the enigmatic Tommy, and the making of 'The Room'. People unfamiliar with the movie and Tommy should be equally compelled by his portrayal, though they may find it hard to believe anyone actually talks like that and may think it's made up. I assure you, it is not.When you watch The Room you are often left with a sinking feeling, just wishing you could hear more from Tommy in his often indecipherable accent, and on that count, this book really delivers with quote after quote of Tommy talk to fill that void. The way the story is told feels very honest, showing Tommy as both a tyrant and somewhat of an inspiration. Neither angle seems to have an agenda. It just feels like Sestero is telling it like it is. I expect this book finds an audience with anyone who enjoys bizarre character studies even if they have not seen the 'The Room', but for anyone who has seen it ("at LEAST twoice" - TW) it is essential reading which will have you laughing out loud and giddy over the revelations contained. While it would be impossible to answer every question the film raises, it comes through answering the majority of headache-inducing questions this train wreck leaves in its wake. This book was not an accident. Everything was meticulously planned.

  • Danger
    2019-05-15 14:06

    Oh man, I LOVED this. I usually don’t read nonfiction, but the story surrounding the genesis and production of The Room is as fascinatingly bizarre as the movie itself. The story paints Tommy Wiseau as a megalomaniacal weirdo auteur, whose supreme lack of talent is only eclipsed by his unrelenting drive. Sure, this is partly a cautionary tale about unchecked hubris, but it’s also a tribute to friendship and never-saying-die, and in that regard, the book is elevated way beyond mockery into something touching and a little bit profound. Before reading The Disaster Artist, I would've never guess that I'd end up thinking that Tommy Wiseau is someone we should all strive to be. BONUS: I listened to the audiobook, narrated by Greg Sustero (Mark in the film) who does a PERFECT Tommy Wiseau impression anytime he reads any of Tommy’s dialogue. It really added a layer of entertainment on top of an already interesting book.

  • Korey
    2019-05-15 16:57

    I am a super fan of The Room and I am obsessed with that mystical muppet Tommy Wiseau so of course I had to blow off work yesterday and read this book in one sitting the day it came out. I cannot keep my stupid comments in my pocket anymore. I have to review this masterwork. I had ridiculously high expectations for this book and I am happy to say it totally delivered. I don't know if I have ever laughed out loud so hard when reading a book in my life. This is so consistently funny I had tears in my eyes from laughing. You will get lots of great behind the scenes info about this trainwreck production. There are also some poignant and insightful moments as Sestero unpacks his bizarre relationship with Wiseau. As for the man, the myth, the legend himself, this book provides a lot of info on what makes Wiseau tick without puncturing the air of mystery around him. I was worried Sestero might pull his punches given his ongoing relationship with Wiseau but he does not hold back. While I read this book because of my fascination with the Room and Wiseau, Sestero's discussion of his own fledgling acting career outside of the Room was also surprisingly engaging. I became interested in him as a person as well, not just as a Wiseau information delivery system. If I had one thing to change about this book I only wish it had been longer. It is so interesting you never want it to end. So stop playing tuxedo football and read it already, preferably in the company of your best friend and future wife. Definitely don't get breast cancer before you get to finish.

  • Tom
    2019-05-02 15:14

    The Disaster Artist is an amazing book, and I don’t mean that in the same way that people say the film The Room is amazing, i.e., amazingly bad. I mean that it is actually a really amazing character study of one Tommy Wiseau, the wealthy, earnest and completely bizarre auteur behind what has been called "the Citizen Kane of bad movies." As is often the case, truth is stranger than fiction, and the character of Johnny from the film only scratches at the surface of the weirdness of the real-life Tommy.Tommy speaks bizarrely broken English with a heavy Eastern European accent, but insists that he’s from New Orleans. Tommy wants to be an actor even though he can’t remember simple lines in a script that he wrote himself. Tommy always puts his phone on speaker so that he can record conversations with a cheap tape recorder and play them back later. Tommy is so secretive and paranoid that even after a number of years his close friend Greg is still clueless about whether he has any family or what he does for a living. Tommy is someone who steadfastly occupies his own reality and refuses believe anything else, real world evidence notwithstanding.We meet Tommy through the eyes of his close friend, actor Greg Sestero. Disaster Artist is in fact Greg’s memoir, not Tommy’s biography, but there really is no better way to approach the subject, since verifying even simple biographical facts about Tommy is virtually impossible, let alone figuring out what's going on in his head. Seeing him from Greg's perspective helps to humanize him.An aspiring actor in San Francisco, Greg meets Tommy at an acting class. Charmed by Tommy’s fearless obliviousness to his lack of acting ability, Greg strikes up a friendship with Tommy, a friendship that will prove to be crucial for both men. Tommy will help jump-start Greg’s acting career by renting him a cheap apartment in Los Angeles. And Greg will be Tommy’s close friend, maybe his only friend, and help Tommy make the film which will make him infamous.Intercut with this story is the making of The Room itself. If you haven’t ever seen The Room, I urge you to do so immediately. It is a unique experience and laugh out loud funny. The film is sort of a love-triangle dramedy gone wildly off kilter. It’s a story about chasing the American dream as it might be written by a space alien who had only read about such fantastic concepts as ‘football’, ‘friendship’ and ‘emotions’. People spout nonsensical lines like "leave your stupid comments in your pocket", plot lines lead nowhere, continuity errors abound and characters are constantly and ham-handedly throwing footballs around for no reason.Whatever strange confluence of events the viewer might imagine resulted in such a weird film, the truth is surely stranger. The sublimely ridiculous rooftop scenes were shot in a hastily erected set in a parking lot, despite the fact that Tommy owned an actual rooftop with gorgeous views of downtown San Francisco. Tommy routinely showed up for filming four hours late. He shot on both film and HD cameras simultaneously, even though he had no intention of using the HD footage. Actors were scared away from the casting process due to Tommy’s insistence on meeting them at night in a parking lot. And famously, it would take hours and hours to get a passable take of many of Tommy’s simplest lines even though he wrote them himself. All of these bizarre stories and many more are faithfully recalled by Tommy’s best friend on and off the screen, Greg Sestero, but the heart of the story is Sestero’s friendship with Tommy. Sestero comes across as an unbelievably patient and forgiving friend, willing to let Tommy be his own weird self and encouraging him in his starry-eyed ambitions. This despite the fact that at times his friendship with the paranoid and secretive Tommy feels extremely toxic. Tommy is, after all, the guy who hired a documentarian to secretly spy on the cast and crew of the film. Although Sestero makes it clear that he knows more of Tommy’s story than he is willing to reveal, he does drop hints of an extremely rough upbringing in Europe and the rocky road to fortune - and eventually fame, of a sort - in America. Still, much about Tommy remains mysterious. Where he originally came from, the nature of his business and what happened to his face are matters of guesswork.Nonetheless, Sestero makes abundantly clear that the secret to ‘The Room’, the thing that makes it such a uniquely strange and riveting film, is that it’s filtered through Tommy Wiseau’s unique vision. Tommy Wiseau would be one of the great characters in literature, if he weren’t completely real. To their credit, Sestero and his co-author Greg Bissell do not approach their subject with a spirit of mockery. They treat Tommy as a genuine person, albeit a very unusual and fascinating one. Tommy has his highs of ebullient fearlessness and lows of manipulation and paranoia. Sestero and Bissell capture both in the style of the best documentarians painting a picture of a very complex and troubled individual. This book is compulsively readable, one of the best character studies I’ve seen, and made me laugh out loud at several points. Watch The Room if you haven’t seen it, then pick up The Disaster Artist immediately.

  • Lea
    2019-04-29 17:58

    I found this book incredibly sad.

  • Clair
    2019-05-04 13:53

    So, a couple of weeks ago I went to see my first ever screening of The Room. And the moment I walked back into my apartment, I had a whole bunch of questions running around my mind. How was the movie financed, and why did it wind up looking cheaper than an American soap opera? Why was it narratively paced and staged like a short play in three acts? Did nobody tell Mr. Wiseau that stage plays function differently to movies? How did nobody try and rewrite the dialogue, to actually make it sound... well... like how normal people speak?The Room is such an interesting phenomenon that there's two documentaries about it coming out soon. One is independently-financed and has been a collaborative effort between all the actors deciding to gather together and reminisce, and the second film is... well, going to be directed by James Franco. (Ick.)It's amazing to think that, had Tommy simply hired out a theatre school in Los Angeles and performed The Room there, in its original Tennessee Williams format, his play would have probably slipped into complete obscurity. Instead, he adapted it for the screen in the most hilariously incompetent way, but seemed to show a passion for film-making that pretty much made him the modern day equivalent to Ed Wood.Tommy Wiseau does come across as a funny figure most of the time. He brushes off the concerns of the production team with this lackadaisical "no don't worry about it and anyway, how is your sex life?" But it's also important to note that this is the exact same man whose crew went on strike because he threw a water bottle at an actress who flubbed her line. His actors spent a lot of time battling heatstroke in the Californian sun because Tommy was too cheap to rent an extra generator for air conditioning, prompting another crewman to permanently walk off set after one too many unfulfilled promises.Tommy was too cheap (cheep cheep cheep) to spring for the welfare of his actors and production staff, but he did somehow pony up the money to spend tens of thousands of dollars on merchandising, over $360,000 on a billboard to advertise the film in Hollywood over a five year period, and even rented cinema space for it for ages, despite only ever making a few hundred dollars out of ticket sales.The Disaster Artist doesn't particularly answer one's questions on just how Tommy got the money... or just why he's such a strange being in the first place. For the former, some signs point to an elderly woman named Chloe Lietzke, who presumably took Tommy in and financed most of the production. She's credited quite a lot in the introduction to the film, despite never once actually visiting the set. For the latter, well... Tommy seems to not have very good memories of his early life in Europe and has an almost fanatical desire to be seen as an American. Even going so far as to make a Thanksgiving dinner every single day in November. Seriously.(My personal theory? Tommy is an actual vampire, ex-communicated from the vampire community. Presumably he had his memory wiped and was left out on the road somewhere. It's as valid a theory as any. :P)This has to be one of the funniest books I've ever read, though. Tom Bissell has a real way with words, and seriously, I was laughing like a hyena as Greg recounted Tommy doing Stanley's monologue from A Streetcar Named Desire.In short, this is a fantastic book that I recommend for all fans of The Room. 5 stars.Some more choice quotes:"Tommy, don't hurt my son." I put my hand over my eyes. The worst thing Tommy could do in response to this request, I thought, would be to chuckle creepily. "I would not," Tommy said, chuckling creepily. (p. 83)Dan had some questions about Chris-R. We all did. Why the name "Chris-R", for instance? What's with that hyphen? Tommy's explanation: "He is gangster." What about this drug business, which never comes up either before or after Chris-R's only scene in the film? "We have big problem in society with drugs. Chris-R is gangster and Denny takes drugs. So he must be rescued."(p. 34)'Sandy was not the only person on set, besides me, who'd been given a complete script of The Room. He'd done considerable work on it, mostly turning it's dreadful dialogue ("Promotion! Promotion! That's all I hear about. Here is your coffee and English muffin and burn your mouth.") into linguistic units human beings could exchange.'(p. 28)

  • Mizuki
    2019-05-03 13:15

    I kept seeing videos about this book on Youtube after I watched, and laughed out loud at honest trailer and videos about The Room, supposedly the most weird and aggressively BAD independent movie ever made.'You're tearing me apart, Lisa!'Who can ever forget this one! LOLOh why oh why there also is a Disaster Artist movie trailer here!?

  • Boyd
    2019-05-16 16:12

    For those who, like me, delighted in PLAN 9 FROM OUTER SPACE, generally considered to be the worst movie ever made, THE ROOM was, and is, a revelation. Even a movie starring the deceased Bela Lugosi and pocked with flying saucers variously identified by viewers as pie tins or paper plates cannot compare with the awfulness of Tommy Wiseau's self-directed, self-produced, self-written and self-starred-in masterpiece. Made for 6 million dollars, the film's inexplicably cheap-looking and ludicrous sets frame some of the worst acting--rooted in a peerlessly ridiculous script--ever witnessed by human eyes, with the auteur himself putting in a performance that has to be seen to be believed.THE DISASTER ARTIST, written by one of the film's lead actors, Greg Sestero, is a fabulous account of the production of THE ROOM and a somewhat loving portrait of the truly bizarre man behind it. Tommy Wiseau is a justifiably failed actor with an accent not found in nature, a background shrouded in mystery, and an apparently bottomless supply of cash from sources unknown. Wiseau, who can't remember the simplest line in his own script, tramples all over the openly laughing actors and crew like a rogue elephant, but at the same time is shown to be a vulnerable loner whose moods swing wildly between grandiosity, paranoia, and furious resentment. As sketched by Sestero, he is one of the most memorable non-fiction characters ever set loose on a page. Apparently the book is now being made into a film starring James Franco and Seth Rogen. I am beyond impatient for it to be released. Anyone who hasn't seen THE ROOM should go immediately to the nearest video store or Netflix account and view it without delay. Then after you've marveled over its insanity for a few days, read Sestero's book and get the deep background. Believe me, it's a world of its own.

  • Leigh
    2019-05-19 10:56

    As earnestly terrible as The Room is as a movie, there's something unseemly and desperate about Greg Sestero's expose. Yes, the behind-the-scenes look at the disastrous filming production and production process are just as jaw-dropping as the quality of the finished product, but the creepiness of Sestero and Wiseau's relationship--from both parties, let's be real here--just made me feel sorry for Tommy and empathize less with Greg, who just seems like a standard LA douche telling all kinds of personal stories about Tommy clearly without his permission. Plus, given his relentless criticism of the film, I would expect Sestero to at least have some kind of skill at writing, which he does not, and his co-writer does little to cover up. The quotes from Sunset Boulevard and the Talented Mr. Ripley were overkill as well. It just seems like Sestero is trying so hard to elbow his way in on the cult status of The Room and break down the myth of Tommy Wiseau, that it's a little distasteful. Sestero seems to be waving his hands around saying, SEE I WAS HERE TOO AND I CAN TELL YOU WHAT REALLY HAPPENED, when we all know what happened: the best bad movie ever made.It's an interesting enough read, but only if you know and love the hot mess that is The Room and realize that there's a reason Sestero hasn't done any sort of acting or writing or much of anything since (hint: he's not good at it).

  • noelle
    2019-04-29 15:15

    “Before running the scene one final time, Tommy wanted to talk to the flower shop owner about her dog. “So cute,” he said, as he petted the dog. “Hopefully he doesn’t bite me, my God.”I think the owner somehow misinterpreted this as Tommy wanting the dog out of the next take. “Well,” she said, “he’s actually really old now. He just sits around. He won’t bother anyone. He kind of rules over this counter.”Tommy nodded, smiling, still gazing down at the motionless little dog. “So is it real thing?”The flower shop owner looked at Tommy uncertainly. “I’m sorry?” she said, after a moment.“Your dog,” Tommy said, unfazed. “Is it real thing?”The woman kept looking at Tommy, probably trying to figure out whether this man who’d taken over her store was really asking if her dog was real. Did Tommy think it was a robot? An android pug of some kind?“Yes,” the woman said finally. “My dog is a real thing.”i haven't been reading a lot lately, but i devoured this book within a few hours. so gdamn good.

  • Rebeca
    2019-04-25 13:12

    ...whatever Tommy had been running from, he'd managed to turn and face it down in his script. Instead of killing himself, he wrote himself out of danger.I took this book with me while crusading through the odder parts of Miami today. I'd barely read fifty pages of it before it started to feel like the universe was trying to align perfectly and make me experience this story in full. For example, barely before 10 am, some woman on the street wandered into the Starbucks I was at. She kept trying to get people's phones, rambled on and on with nonsense, went up and down the street trying to run across traffic, yelled at people at random, and somehow disappeared before the police arrived to check on her. At a bus stop, another woman sat beside me. She had dusted her eyelids in rainbow eyeshadow and glitter and she was dressed in frilly layers of skirts, all stitched together--which might have been neon colors once but were now washed out and faded--with handmade cloth jewelry hanging off every wrist and finger. She asked me what I was reading, read the cover out loud, asked multiple times if it was boring, and engaged me in some odd conversation before asking if I wanted to buy anything she had on for a dollar.If I could, I'd mention where I went for an interview afterwards. Sufficed to say, during that very peculiar interview, I heard a story involving a very sick woman wielding a butter knife and what she tried to do with said butter knife.Then on the bus back, three really drunk construction workers simultaneously tried to yell through the back door at people on the street and then kindly saved and offered me a seat.And really, what better way is there to experience this book than with the reminder that the world is weird? People can be weird. Art, especially, good or bad, is really weird.I've seen The Room before and cringed and laughed at all the right places. I've become kind of put off by the douchey nature of some of its male fans (and if you've ever seen this movie with a crowd entirely made up of college boys, you might be inclined to agree), but I've never really stopped to consider the people involved. Or the creator. I know enough about film to know it takes hard work--more than I could ever be able to put forth. So you'd think at some point I would have realized something like The Room shouldn't have even happened. How many people just as strange or stranger than Wiseau would have written the most gratuitous self-insert script ever and then given up on it after forcing their best friend to read it?When this book delves into all the work people put in, it's actually kind of admirable. Even the people who eventually walked away clearly tried to stick through it for as long as possible--in need of money and some experience, but nevertheless, still trying to see things through to the end. At first I wasn't too taken with the format of the book. It's told in two timelines, alternating every other chapter. The first is Greg Sestero realizing his love for film, trying to become an actor and struggling through that, and meeting Tommy and the friendship they developed in those first few years together. The second timeline takes place entirely through the filming of The Room. And it's hilarious. It's seriously hilarious. This whole book had me laughing practically every page. Given the subject matter, that probably wasn't difficult to accomplish. What undoubtedly was difficult, and what is truly an accomplishment, is how much it made me feel torn up. And how much it made me think about art in general. As it ended, I realized why the book had such a specific format--Tommy is strange and hilarious and creepy at the beginning of the production. He's strange/hilarious/creepy when he first meets Greg Sestero. But as time passes, we learn more about him, understand more about him. That first timeline contextualizes the production scenes slowly, and it can even lead to some really sad or frightening moments.Make no mistake, from what we see here, Tommy Wisaeu is a terrible person. He emotionally manipulated a young Sestero, he treated people like shit in his production, he acted like a total freaking creep with the female actresses and just the crew in general. At times, as funny as some scenes could be, they were also making me incredibly uncomfortable. I could barely imagine how some of the cast and crew felt having to deal with this man all the time, and when he lost it in the car with Sestero, I couldn't figure out why the two of them would stay friends, let alone make a movie together.But in a way, that's what makes the book work. Just as Sestero can write about being absolutely terrified of Tommy, he can also show moments where the two of them had fun, where they encouraged each other, where they shared a very interesting kind of friendship.Anyone who has seen The Room knows that--among its many, many problems--it's nothing more than a narcissistic story where a great, wonderful, incredible man is fucked over by the people he loves and who don't deserve him. Tommy Wiseau wrote a classic self-insert Gary Stu and spent thousands of dollars to make a film around it. Discussion of the Mary Sue has changed over the years. Now there's some talk of how young girls so often turn to it in fiction because they're put down by societal expectations. Oftentimes the creation of a Mary Sue character is how they find confidence, acceptance, love. And it certainly makes for terrible fiction and it can reveal some pretty problematic undertones and it's important for artists to grow out of it--but there is merit in that kind of thing. And as terrible as Tommy can be in the stories told here, I do feel I can sympathize as a fellow artist. We write, paint, film, create because it's how we survive. It doesn't often help all of us and some of us turn out to be terrible at our chosen mediums, but even if the end result is bad, art is still there as that outlet for everyone and anyone.In some ways, reading this book kept reminding me of Banksy's Exit Through the Gift Shop. The documentary is a bit more interesting in that it leaves some ambiguity in the questions it asks as opposed to The Disaster Artist's slightly neater conclusion, but they're both about art in the end, what we consider art, what makes art good or bad, and what merit is there in either? It's all certainly worth thinking about.

  • Dana Aprigliano (TheVaguelyArticulateReader)
    2019-04-28 13:21

    The Disaster Artist is, hands down, one of the best books I've read in my entire life. If I were to read only one book for the rest of my life, this would be it. If I were to take only one book to a desert island, this would be it. If I were to rate only one book six out of five stars throughout all my existence, THE DISASTER ARTIST WOULD BE IT!This book is a nonfiction memoir of about 260 pages written by actor Greg Sestero with journalist Tom Bissell, and I read it in the paperback form with the above cover (not the movie tie-in cover). I give this book SIX OUT OF FIVE STARS.Here's a quick summary before I go into the actual review. The narrative is told through the eyes of Greg Sestero, a young actor who is about nineteen years old when he meets the man who will change his life. This man's name is Tommy Wiseau, and as it would turn out, Tommy Wiseau is not only an extraordinarily unique actor, but the owner of an apartment in Los Angeles which Greg would be more than happy to move into as a first step in starting his acting career. But Greg's career doesn't seem to take off as quickly as he would have liked it to, and whenever he does get something to do his joy is overshadowed by Tommy's jealousy. Finally, in a fit of inspiration fueled by jealousy, Tommy Wiseau decides: screw Hollywood, he'll make his own movie! The resulting movie: The Room, commonly referred to as the "worst movie of all time"; a movie bogged down with a terrible script, bad production, and laughably ridiculous continuity errors. Riding shotgun of Wiseau's Mercedes-Benz on the road to the worst cinematic disaster of all time: poor Greg Sestero, who only wanted money, a stable job, and the ability to live out his acting job.I'll start off this review just by saying that to understand this book and revel in its absurdity and hilarity fully, you must, and I repeat, must, watch The Room first. Preferably in a theater filled with Room superfans throwing spoons at the screen and shouting "GO, GO, GO!" every time the camera pans over the Golden Gate Bridge and the greater San Francisco area. Sestero constantly references both the movie and the fan base (which I am a proud member of) in his narrative, and the reader should have a good feel for both before attempting to comprehend this opus and all its nuances. This fact does not make the book bad; on the contrary, The Disaster Artist just knows its audience all too well.The Disaster Artist is hysterically funny. Never before have I laughed out loud while reading a book as much as I have while reading this book. Tommy Wiseau himself is a person who seems almost unreal in his oddity, and as the main figure in a book such as this, he jumps off the page in a hilarious mess of Greg's embarrassment, others' astonishment, even others' disgust and irritation, and the reader's uncontrollable laughter. The Room itself was so funny, too, that a "Giggle Tent" was necessary during filming for crew members to hide away and let loose their laughter in during times when Tommy's on-set and on-camera behavior was especially ridiculous and volatile. Even Sestero himself admits to multiple lengthy sessions in the "Giggle Tent", and while reading this book you'll undoubtedly understand why.The Disaster Artist is an emotional tale of a devoted and true-to-life friendship. Greg Sestero and Tommy Wiseau's friendship is the kind that, while you're reading about it, will make you think about those important friendships in your own life. Greg stayed friends with Tommy against all common sense and logic, against literally all of his other loved ones' objections, and, at times, against his own better judgment. He dealt with Tommy's abject bullshit for years upon years, and still does. He was by Tommy's side when he was at his worst, at his best, and at his darkest and most secretive. He saved Tommy from the brink of innumerable nervous breakdowns, sticky situations, and more. He truly, to this day, understands Tommy like no one else, and almost acts as Tommy's liaison with the rest of the world.Bottom line, this book is amazing. Just go read it. But watch The Room first.

  • Shelby
    2019-05-02 16:05

    Greg Sestero had quite a story on his hands when he met the creator of the best worst movie ever made, Tommy Wiseau. However it feels like once he put it down in writing the story became clunky, even with the help of Tom Bissell. Also, he made way too many references to Retro Puppet Master. We get it Sestero. Retro Puppet Master was your first big Hollywood gig, but I bet most of your readers weren’t interested in that.

  • xTx xTx
    2019-05-12 09:56

    There should be a piece of Tommy Wiseau in all of us. The world would be a better place.

  • Gauri
    2019-04-29 09:56

    I cannot emphasize enough how entertaining this book is, and how absolutely bizarre its subject is.This book is about the independent film The Room. One critic named this movie "the Citizen Kane of bad movies". Another declared it was "the modern Plan 9 from Outer Space". This book calls it "a literal comedy of errors". There is a cult following behind this movie that gives the it the Rocky Horror treatment during sold-out screenings. This movie is famous because it lacks so much coherence that it is in fact, one gigantic plot hole. The star of the film says his lines as though he doesn't understand them -- even though he was the one who wrote them. My favorite quote from this movie: "Keep your stupid comments in your pocket."This book details the process behind creating this movie, as well as the man behind the film. If you think the film is insane, you better read this book. Tommy Wiseau, director, producer, and writer (or the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost), is so utterly devoid of self-awareness that he had skyscraper-high ambitions for something he couldn't recognize (and still can't recognize) as one of the biggest messes in cinematic history. Honestly, his character and his personal history are so perplexing that I wonder how he sees the world around him. I have a rough idea. Bissell crafts a story out of Sestero's memories so well that it made me laugh out loud from start to finish. Pure. Hilarity. Watch the movie. Read this book. This is a bucket-list kind of thing.

  • Andi
    2019-05-12 10:02

    I love bad movies. I love MST3K. I love watching something derail.So, naturally, I loved this book. There is some strange mystical quality of watching a film that was honestly meant to be good by it's creator and yet, it makes no sense at all. Or perhaps it did, just not the way we think. So yes, I have seen The Room, and yes, it was a mind-fuck.The narrative, the memories, all recollected by Greg Sestero are so wild, so 'oh my god, I can't' that you gotta keep reading. It's not badly written either. So, if you're like me and you like 'so bad it's good', pick this book up.

  • Natalie
    2019-05-09 15:02

    Absolutely hilarious - highly recommend to anyone who's a fan of Tommy Wiseau's 2003 masterpiece The Room or to anyone who's curious about how the film industry works in general.

  • Vanessa
    2019-05-18 15:02

    In short, the funniest book I have read in ages. A MUST read.(also, the source material for the upcoming James Franco movie.)In the late summer of 2002, a young, struggling actor named Greg Sestero began work on an extremely independent film. On June, 27, 2003, against all odds, that film premiered. This is the story of how The Room was born and made. (I'm not normally a gif-er, but for this review some visual context is helpful. Nay. Demanded.)So, The Room:The Room:The Room:And, The Room:If you somehow haven't seen or heard of The Room yet, here is a synopsis:Johnny lives in San Francisco with his fiance Lisa and their priceless collection of spoon art. He works at a bank where he works at a bank. Everybody loves Johnny: florists, dogs, florist's dogs. In his spare time, Johnny likes to play throw footballs to his best friend Mark on the roof of his building. But Lisa decides one day that Johnny is boring (also, he seems to think her vagina is located somewhere around her gall bladder.) So she starts an affair with his best friend Mark. Then Johnny finds out and confronts them at his surprise birthday party. Mark and Lisa leave to go have sex at Mark's place for a change. Then Johnny gently trashes his apartment, has an adult relationship with Lisa's dress, and commits suicide. Everyone finds him and feels bad and Mark doesn't love Lisa any more. Johnny was his best friend, by the way.Oh, also, there is this creepy kid who lives in their building and he owes a drug dealer money. Also, Lisa's Mom definitely has breast cancer. The End.Greg Sestero met Tommy Wiseau in an acting class in San Francisco, where the vaguely Eastern European Wiseau was both a terrible and mesmerizing performer and later, Sestero's scene partner. Soon, they are friends of a sort despite Wiseau's paranoia, unique mannerisms, and purposeful and aggressive vagueness about nearly every detail of his personal life. Wiseau offers Sestero the use of his Los Angeles apartment so he (Greg) can further pursue his acting career. Bit parts and a starring role in a Puppet Master sequel follow, but Greg never breaks thru. To Tommy though, the blandly handsome Sestero's success burns away at him. Wiseau has plenty of money (to this day, how he acquired it is unclear), but his ultimate goal and obsession is to be an acclaimed actor. So one day, he decides to write his magnum opus, which he then produces, executive produces, writes, directs, and stars in himself. That opus was, of course, The Room, a movie that is often referred to as "the Citizen Kane of bad movies."This book answers all some of your burning Room questions, like:What movie inspired the writing of The Room? Hint: the character of Mark is named after an actor in that movie that Tommy admired, Oscar winner "Mark Damon."Why does Johnny respond to Mark's story about a woman that was beaten up by her boyfriend (and ended up "in a hospital on Guerrero street") with insouciant laughter?How many film crews did the movie go through during production? (Spoiler: THREE)Is the trailer for the James Franco film exaggerating about how many takes were needed to nail the "I did not hit her! I. Did. Not. Oh, hai Mark" scene? (No)Why was the guy who played Chris-R (the only drug dealer who apparently offers a layaway plan) so strangely, legitimately good?Speaking of which, why was his character's name hyphenated like that?Seriously though, what is the deal with the spoon pictures?I don't know if Sestero is naturally that funny (he comes off far more taciturn in his interviews) or he had significant help from his co-author, magazine writer Tom Bissell, but the book is loaded for chicken bear with hysterical scenes:That night would be the pirate's {how Sestero referred to Wiseau before learning his name}final performance with his current scene partner. They'd decided to do a scene from A Streetcar Named Desire......He wasn't even bothering to direct his agony toward his partner, the intended focus of the scene. He was just launching his performance out into space......The pirate's scene partner valiantly tried to bring him around with the smelling salts of actual lines from the script, but he kept yelling over her, "Stella! Stella!"He also refused to let the Palm's valet park his silver SL500 Mercedes-Benz, worried the guy would fart in his seat."I want my car," Tommy began, "to fly off the roof and into the sky.""Why," Raphael said, "do you want to do this, exactly?""It's just possible side plot. Maybe Johnny is vampire." Meanwhile, Tommy's idea of directing an actress during auditions was to push her in front of a camera and emotionally terrorize her. "Your sister just become lesbian!" he'd say, and wait for the "acting" to kick in. If that didn't work, he'd yell: "Your mother just die!"Hilarious, educational both about how movies are professionally made (versus how this movie was), and occasionally sweet, this book was so much fun to read. Highly, highly and very sincerely recommended. One final note, while reading the book, I ended up re-watching many of the Room clips on YouTube. This one was my favorite (the book, once again, has a play-by-play of how this and many other iconic scenes came to be):

  • Rade
    2019-05-04 09:56

    "Oh, Hi Mark!"Holy crap, what a ride haha. If you are not familiar with The Room movie,you are probably not the only one. It was the most absurd piece of American cinema directed, written, and produced by Tommy Wiseau. To say that Tommy is an absurd director and/or a crazy son of a bitch is an understatement of a century. This book follows a young Greg Sestero who just so happens to costarring with Tommy in his movie. Sestero, from a very early time in his life dreamed of becoming an actor but he never seemed to find gigs or land any large roles that will propel him to a stardom that everyone in Hollywood (especially Tommy) dreams of. Eventually during one of his acting classes, Sestero meets Tommy who appears to be the most absurd character he ever met. They form a friendship and eventually Sestero agrees to be in Tommy's film, which he regrets many times throughout the book but I think eventually accepts it as part of his life. Tommy, not telling anyone where he gets the seemingly endless buckets of money he spends on his movie (seriously, he BUYS cameras and all the other equipment for his movie. Even the biggest movie studious in Hollywood don't do such things) finally starts to get the movie cameras rolling which creates endless problems. Some include script making no sense, emotions showed at most pointless moments, filming at weird locations that creates many problems for camera operators, putting HD camera and normal camera together to shoot the scenes simultaneously, fight with crew members, fights with actors/actresses over lines that a normal person would never say (Ex: "You betrayed me! You're not good. You, you're just a chicken. Chip-chip-chip-chip-cheep-cheep." "You don't understand anything, man. Leave your *stupid* comments in your pocket!" "As far as I'm concerned, you can drop off the earth. That's a promise." and many more). Tommy was also spending money on stupid things around the set but he was making a lot of people on the set by refusing to pay them, not buying air conditioner in a 93 degrees set, and showing up 4 hours late to his own movie set. He also carried cameras home as he did not trust his staff which made production drag on even longer (takes a while to set up cameras). Throughout all this time. Tommy and Sestero had disagreements where Tommy started to become jealous of Sestero and his auditions that he started to get. Tommy kept saying that Hollywood does not understand him and therefore do not understand talent when they saw it. This was coming from a guy who took three hours and thirty two takes to remember and say a phrase "I did not hit her. It is not true. I did not (comes out as nahhht)" while clearly being angry. Followed by, "Oh , hi Mark." which he said with a straight face and no anger in it(he needed to say this while throwing a bottle on the ground). Tommy was notoriously hard to work with. He never let people change lines, ad lib them, or ask for change in scenery. He did it his way and most lines in the movie make no sense. There were MANY errors and countless continuity errors (one scene start in mid day, and changes to dark in few seconds, characters holding items which disappear few sec later, etc.)That being said, PLEASE watch The Room. It is called The Citizen Kane of bad movies. In fact, Sestero even said the first time he showed the movie to his family, they all laughed like crazy and replayed/paused many times throughout this $6 million dollars abomination. Tommy was incredibly proud of this movie (he had tears in his eyes during premiere), thinking it will launch his acting career. However, being very demanding, not taking criticisms well, and insisting that his acting is top notch might be more than a small obstacle he has to overcome before Hollywood gives him an Oscar. Still, for a man to direct a movie he wrote, directed and produced while thinking it will be a dramatic piece of cinema which later turned out to be nothing shorter than an absurd comedy, is a grand feat in itself.

  • Alex
    2019-04-24 15:52

    Wow, what a story, Greg.I love The Room. I love bad movies, bad music, stuff that's not supposed to be bad but turns out so--I'm not sure why. I normally have terrible secondhand embarrassment for a lot of more normal things, but this stuff keeps me alive. I knew going into this book that The Room was an absolute shitshow. What I didn't expect was just *how much* of a shitshow it was.Alternating chapters chronicle both Greg's fascinating, bizarre friendship with Tommy Wiseau, who is by far one of the strangest people that's ever existed on this earth, and the filming of The Room itself. At first I thought the structure was a bit cheesy, but the more I went on, the more it worked, especially when seeing how bad the production does and wondering how on earth Greg managed to agree to be in this film. Tommy's magnetic, oddly charming, and while I don't agree with his methods at all, I respect the fact that he doggedly pursued his passion project. It may have been one of the worst passion projects I've ever seen, but there's something to be said for that. Greg's also more interesting than I thought he'd be, and his story of breaking into Hollywood (err, if you can call it that) was more interesting than I thought it'd be.We're all here for the dirty details on The Room's filming, though, and boy does this ever deliver. I knew intellectually that several cast/crew members left while filming, but I don't think I ever clocked what that did to production until reading through this book and seeing it all dramatized. Credit to Greg Sestero and Tom Bissell--the way this book was written made me feel like I was there. It was also, frequently, laugh-out-loud funny; I found myself giggling in the lunch room over how absurd the entire enterprise was. Most of the small trivia I knew (Tommy wanted to have the vampiric subplot, the "hi doggie" was improvised, etc.) but getting a big picture of the entire ordeal was fantastic.If I had one complaint, it's that the book ended a bit abruptly with the premiere of The Room. While the intro touches on the fact that it's become a cult film (clearly), I suppose I wanted more of the in-between time from premiere to cult stardom, and how Tommy coped with that, although that's just me.If you're looking for a fun read and love bad cinema, please read this book. It's definitely worth it, and I'm glad I finally picked it up!