A former radio and TV broadcaster is opening a Hollywood time capsule of sorts and giving away the treasures inside.
Elliot Mintz did hundreds of celebrity interviews in the 1960s and ’70s for his nationally syndicated shows. Stars such as Stevie Wonder, Groucho Marx, Donna Summer, John Coltrane, Jayne Mansfield and scores of other artists and entertainers spent hours talking to him on air.
Determined to retire after five decades in Hollywood, the 69-year-old is releasing what he calls a “cyberography”: A free website filled with more than 150 hours of his radio and TV interviews comprising hundreds of celebrities. There are even intimate discussions with Salvador Dali and Timothy Leary, as well as advice for Hollywood hopefuls from Mintz himself.
Mintz said he’s a better storyteller than writer. The website is both memoir and parting gift.
“This is the most personal way I could think to reach people,” he said in a recent interview. “And it’s free.”
Nothing is for sale and there are no ads on the site, just hours and hours of interviews with entertainment legends frozen in time: Jack Nicholson discussing the challenge of his “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” role before he won the Oscar for it; Bob Dylan reflecting on his own songwriting (“Nothing about me is exceptional”); John Wayne lamenting his popular cowboy image; and John Lennon, on what broke up the Beatles.
Longtime radio host Jim Ladd assisted with the project by interviewing Mintz about his career.
ElliotMintz.com went live Sunday.
Gibson’s battery conviction vacated
A Los Angeles court has vacated Mel Gibson’s misdemeanor domestic violence battery conviction in a case filed after a highly publicized fight with his ex-girlfriend.
The dismissal was finalized Monday by Superior Court Judge Deborah Brazil, and her order was released Friday.
Gibson pleaded no contest in 2011 to one count of misdemeanor spousal battery of his former girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva. He was sentenced to three years of probation, domestic violence counseling and two days of community service.
The Oscar-winning director completed the terms of his sentence within a year.
He was accused of striking Grigorieva during a fight in January 2010, although she did not report the incident to authorities until months later. By then, the pair was locked in a custody battle over their infant daughter.
The birthday bunch
PBS newscaster Jim Lehrer is 80. TV personality David Hartman is 79. Actor Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca in “Star Wars”) is 70. Musician Pete Townshend (The Who) is 69. Singer-bassist Dusty Hill (ZZ Top) is 65. Singer-actress-model Grace Jones is 62. Drummer Phil Rudd (AC/DC) is 60. Singer Shooter Jennings is 35. Actor Eric Lloyd (“The Santa Clause”) is 28.
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