Turner Classic Movies
Bringing Back The Old Hollywood
Written by Stephen Simon   

Book Review by Diana Saenger  

bringing_back_old_hollywood.jpgMany wonder what it's like to be part of Hollywood. As a celebrity interviewer I'm often asked who I interviewed lately or what I thought about someone's favorite star. In his book Bringing Back The Old Hollywood Stephen Simon reveals what it was like for him to grow up during the heydays of Hollywood and also to work in the industry for decades.

Simon didn't have to endure a casting call to get a spotlight. His father, S. Sylvan Simon, was a successful Hollywood producer/director who made films with such stars as Abbott and Costello, Lana Turner, and Red Skelton.  He worked as both a producer and an executive at Columbia Pictures under the legendary Harry Cohn, producing films such as Born Yesterday, the 1950 film that garnered a Best Actress Oscar for star Judy Holliday.

When his father died, Simon flourished under guidance of many including his godfather Frank Sinatra, and he acquired a stepfather when his mother Harriet married Armand Deutsch. He was a film producer at MGM who produced films with stars such as Robert Taylor, James Stewart, and Grace Kelly.

By this time Simon had the "movie" bug. Not only was he enjoying the who's who of Hollywood as dinner and part guests of his parents, he was actually getting doors to open mostly because of Sinatra.

As more and more doors opened and Simon actually began to work in the industry, it's fascinating how he himself was responsible for some of those doors slamming closed. Hint - the title on one of the chapters in his book is "Never Have Sex with Your Boss's Mistress."

That's the key positive about Bringing Back The Old Hollywood. While it could have been enhanced with a good grammar edit, Simon is truthful as he reveals his entertaining times and mistakes he made. Some with serious consequences.

His stories about playing touch football with Elvis Presley, being a regular on the Reagan ranch, and producing Somewhere in Time with Christopher Reeve and Jane Seymour are enjoyable to read. But more than entertaining, Simon has a mission for this book. To bring back old Hollywood and "create films that are uplifting and inspiring stories about the human experience."

"It is, rather, a practical and achievable goal," states Simon. "To do so requires the establishment of a new marketplace where people who care about the future of movies, can gather to discuss, debate and decide how movies outside The New Hollywood will get financed and distributed from this moment forward."

To learn more about these plans visit

Bringing Back The Old Hollywood

* Publisher: Green Solutions, LLC

* ISBN: 978-0-982-8201-0-0

* Pages: 262 pages

* Price: $14.95




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