RARA-AVIS: Re: James Atlee Phillips

From: Richard Moore ( moorich@aol.com)
Date: 09 Apr 2008

--- In rara-avis-l@yahoogroups.com, DJ-Anonyme@... wrote:
> Richard wrote:
> "Finally, James Atlee Phillips belongs in my personal hall of fame for
> having written the screenplay to that wonderful drive-in favorite
> "Thunder Road" starring Robert Mitchum."
> For anyone in the DC area, the movie is playing at AFI Silver
> (www.afi.com/silver) several times between 4/18 and 4/24. I'm looking
> forward to finally seeing it on something larger than a TV screen.
> Mark

Man, I saw that flick first at the Starlight Drive-in on Moreland Avenue south of Atlanta and saw it at least twice more at the McDonough Theater. It played forever in the south.

My cousins in Asheville, NC took me to all the locations where the movie was filmed. They had a fiftieth anniversay of the movie in Asheville last year.

From what I understand the final script for Thunder Road was hammered out by Phillips and Mitchum in the Grove Park Inn in Asheville. Friends, let me tell you, the Grove Park Inn may not be heaven but if I wake up there when I die, I won't complain. My Uncle Andy and his brothers brought the rocks in for their massive fireplaces and if it was good enough for F. Scott, it suits me too.

According to Lee Server's excellent biography of Robert Mitchum, James' brother David Atlee Phillips, a senior official at the CIA (and a player in the Bay of Pigs adventure), made some phone calls that opened the door to help at the ATF (Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms unit at the Treasury Department).

Richard Moore

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