Design: Russ Meyer – Movie Posters
Russell Albion “Russ” Meyer (March 21, 1922 – September 18, 2004) Russ Meyer was an American film maker with a penchant for stupid humour and big breasted women. His first feature, the nudist comedy The Immoral Mr. Teas (1959), cost $24,000 to produce and eventually grossed more than $1,000,000 on the independent/exploitation circuit, instantly making Russ the”King of the Nudies.” Over the next decade, he made nearly 20 movies with a trademark blend of odd humor, huge-breasted starlets and All-American sleaze, including the classic Faster Pussycat Kill, Kill (1965), Mudhoney (1965) and Vixen (1968). Russ Meyer was a true auteur – he wrote, directed, edited, photographed and distributed all his own films. As a side note, I called his video distributing company once to see if I could get a movie poster of Faster Pussycat… and Russ answered the phone.
After the unexpected success of the low budget Easy Rider and impressed by Meyer’s frugality and profitability, 20th Century Fox signed Russ to produce and direct a proposed sequel to Valley of the Dolls in 1969, fulfilling his ambition to direct for a major Hollywood studio. What eventually appeared was Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (1970), scripted by film critic (and Meyer devotee) Roger Ebert and bearing no relation to the novel or first film at all. Variety said it was “as funny as a burning orphanage and a treat for the emotionally retarded.”Contractually stipulated to produce an R-rated film, the brutally violent climax (depicting a decapitation) ensured an X rating. Needless to say Russ’s chance for another major release was pretty dim. Russ however got the last laugh making millions on his films in the new VHS and DVD markets of the 80’s and 90’s. In 2000 he publish his 3 volume autobiography A Clean Breast. He died in 2004 of pneumonia.