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An intimate portrait by the enigmatic comic's closest associates share secrets Kaufman wanted withheld until the deaths of his parents, discussing rumors about his "faked" death while offering behind-the-scenes insights into Man on the Moon. 30,000 first printing.
Taking as his starting point the 1999 biopic Man on the Moon, Florian Keller explores Andy Kaufman's career within a broader discussion of the ideology of the American Dream, grasping Kaufman's radical agenda beyond avant-garde theories of transgression. Presenting readings of Kaufman's most significant performances, Keller shows how he mounted a critique of America's obsession with celebrity and individualism.
Andy Kaufman defied explanation. Between 1978 and 1979, acclaimed novelist and New Yorker short story writer Julie Hecht attempted to arrange an interview with him, hoping to discover how he came to do what he did. The one-hour interview turned into innumerable surreal meetings and phone conversations with her subject; but she couldn't always tell when his act was on. Whether driving recklessly on icy roads or drawing the author unawares into his schemes and Dada-esque pranks on unsuspecting waiters and college students, Andy Kaufman never seemed to separate himself from his stage personality -- or personalities. Was This Man a Genius? is the culmination of a series of bizarre, frequently hilarious meetings. In describing them, Hecht, herself a master of wit and observation, illuminates the enigma of Andy Kaufman's work and life.
Comedian and performer Andy Kaufman’s resume was impressive—a popular role on the beloved sitcom Taxi, a high-profile stand-up career, and a surprisingly successful stint in professional wrestling. Although he was by all accounts a sensitive and thoughtful person, he’s ironically best remembered for his various contemptible personas, which were so committed and so convincing that all but his closest family and friends were completely taken in. Why would someone so gentle-natured and sensitive build an entire career seeking the hatred of his audience? What drives a performer to solicit that reaction? With the same nuance and sympathy with which he approached Andre the Giant in his 2014 biography, graphic novelist Box Brown's Is This Guy For Real? takes on the complex and often hilarious life of Andy Kaufman.
Best known for his sweet-natured character Latka on Taxi, Andy Kaufman was the most influential comic of the generation that produced David Letterman, John Belushi, and Robin Williams. A regular on the early days of Saturday Night Live (where he regularly disrupted planned skits), Kaufman quickly became known for his idiosyncratic roles and for performances that crossed the boundaries of comedy, challenging expectations and shocking audiences. Kaufman's death from lung cancer at age 35 (he'd never smoked) stunned his fans and the comic community that had come to look to him as its lightning rod and standard bearer. Bob Zmuda -- Kaufman's closest friend, producer, writer, and straight man -- breaks his twenty-year silence about Kaufman and unmasks the man he knew better than anyone. He chronicles Kaufman's meteoric rise, the development of his extraordinary personas, the private man behind the driven actor and comedian, and answers the question most often asked: Did Andy Kaufman fake his own death?
From renowned journalist Bill Zehme, author of the New York Times bestselling The Way You Wear Your Hat: Frank Sinatra and the Lost Art of Livin', comes the first full-fledged biography and the only complete story of the late comic genius Andy Kaufman. Based on six years of research, Andy's own unpublished, never-before-seen writings, and hundreds of interviews with family members, friends, and key players in Andy's endless charades, many of whom have become icons in their own right, Lost in the Funhouse takes us through the maze of Kaufman's mind and lets us sit deep behind his mad, dazzling blue eyes to see, firsthand, the fanciful landscape that was his life. Controversial, chaotic, splendidly surreal, and tragically brief--what a life it was. Andy Kaufman was often a mystery even to his closest friends. Remote, aloof, impossible to know, his internal world was a kaleidoscope of characters fighting for time on the outside. He was as much Andy Kaufman as he was Foreign Man (dank you veddy much), who became the lovably bashful Latka on the hit TV series Taxi. He was as much Elvis Presley as he was the repugnant Tony Clifton, a lounge singer from Vegas who hated any audience that came to see him and who seemed to hate Andy Kaufman even more. He was a contradiction, a paradox on every level, an artist in every sense of the word. During the comic boom of the seventies, when the world had begun to discover the prodigious talents of Steve Martin, Richard Pryor, John Belushi, Bill Murray, and so many others, Andy was simply doing what he had always done in his boyhood reveries. On the debut of Saturday Night Live, he stood nervously next to a phonograph that scratchily played the theme from Mighty Mouse. He fussed and fidgeted, waiting for his moment. When it came, he raised his hand and moved his mouth to the words "Here I come to save the day!" In that beautiful deliverance of pantomime before the millions of people for whom he had always dreamed about performing, Andy triumphed. He changed the face of comedy forever by lurching across boundaries that no one knew existed. He was the boy who made life his playground and never stopped playing, even when the games proved too dangerous for others. And in the end he would play alone, just as he had when it was all only beginning. In Lost in the Funhouse, Bill Zehme sorts through a life of disinformation put forth by a master of deception to uncover the motivation behind the manipulation. Magically entertaining, it is a singular biography matched only by its singular subject. From the Hardcover edition.
Famous for his role as Latka Gravas on TV's Taxi, appearances on Saturday Night Live and his own variety show, legendary eccentric performer Andy Kaufman provoked a national outrage in 1977 by taunting the women of America on TV and challenging them to wrestle him live on television. Thousands of fired-up females (and a few males) responded to the call. Kaufman received a torrent of impassioned challenges, hate mail and love letters from would-be wrestling contenders - all exhibited in this fascinating and sometimes bizarre collection.

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