...ever see the movie “Sorcerer,” based on the French film “Wages of Fear,” directed by William Friedkin, and starring Roy Scheider?
Friedkin, who had just made The French Connection and the Exorcist and was riding higher than a kite in Hollywood, supposedly acted like a complete prick during production of Sorcerer. So much so that when the film was released (on the week of June 24, 1977, the same week as another little film called “Star Wars”) and bombed, he was ruined as a director. Everyone who he had been a horrible monster to on the way up, made sure he crash landed on the way down.
Originally set to star Steve McQueen (and also turned down by Clint Eastwood, Gene Hackman, Paul Newman, and Jack Nicholson), Friedkin eventually ‘settled’ on the “lesser” star, Roy Scheider.
Oddly, even though it’s considered one of the biggest flops in Hollywood history, it’s one of my favorite films, starrring one of my favorite actors. Scheider is awesome (as he is in Marathon Man, Jaws, The French Connection, and The Seven-Ups), so I did the (below) sketch of him...