Monday, January 22, 2018

The Disaster Artist by Greg Sestero

The Disaster Artist
My Life Inside The Room, the Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made
by Greg Sestero, Tom Bissell
narrated by author

Find out more about this book and author:

Published: 2013
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre: Humor, Movies, Memoir
Hardback: 288
Rating: 5

First sentence(s):
Imagine a movie so incomprehensible that you find yourself compelled to watch it over and over again.

The hilarious and inspiring story of how a mysterious misfit got past every roadblock in the Hollywood system to achieve success on his own terms: a $6 million cinematic catastrophe called The Room.

Nineteen-year-old Greg Sestero met Tommy Wiseau at an acting school in San Francisco. Wiseau’s scenes were rivetingly wrong, yet Sestero, hypnotized by such uninhibited acting, thought, “I have to do a scene with this guy.” That impulse changed both of their lives. Wiseau seemed never to have read the rule book on interpersonal relationships (or the instruc­tions on a bottle of black hair dye), yet he generously offered to put the aspiring actor up in his LA apart­ment. Sestero’s nascent acting career first sizzled, then fizzled, resulting in Wiseau’s last-second offer to Sestero of costarring with him in The Room, a movie Wiseau wrote and planned to finance, produce, and direct—in the parking lot of a Hollywood equipment-rental shop.

Wiseau spent $6 million of his own money on his film, but despite the efforts of the disbelieving (and frequently fired) crew and embarrassed (and fre­quently fired) actors, the movie made no sense. Nevertheless Wiseau rented a Hollywood billboard featuring his alarming headshot and staged a red carpet premiere. The Room made $1800 at the box office and closed after two weeks. One reviewer said that watching The Room was like “getting stabbed in the head.”

The Disaster Artist is Greg Sestero’s laugh-out-loud funny account of how Tommy Wiseau defied every law of artistry, business, and friendship to make “the Citizen Kane of bad movies” (Entertainment Weekly), which is now an international phenomenon, with Wiseau himself beloved as an oddball celebrity. Written with award-winning journalist Tom Bissell, The Disaster Artist is an inspiring tour de force that reads like a page-turning novel, an open-hearted portrait of an enigmatic man who will improbably capture your heart.

My two-bits:

I listened to this memoir in preparation for watching the movie version. Also, watched the film, The Room before the listen. And also, before the James Franco story release about his #Timesup pin at the Golden Globes ceremony.

I really enjoyed listening to the author read his story. Being an actor he did very well with capturing the essence of Tommy throughout the reading.

It was fascinating to follow this friendship and to learn about Greg's experience with the making of The Room.

Thoughts about art, passion and success come to mind.

Off to see the movie version...


* Listened to audiobook version.


  1. So disappointing to hear about Franco. I think I'll skip the book but I may check out the movie. Can't wait to hear how the movie compares with the book!


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