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Blowing out candles for Roger Corman and William Shatner

To mark the occasion of Roger Corman’s 98th birthday, exactly two weeks after William Shatner’s 93rd birthday, I am pleased to present Wicked Messenger’s subscribers with an opportunity to see their forgotten collaboration in its full, uncut form, just as its creators intended.
Blowing out candles for Roger Corman and William Shatner
The Great Roger Corman, seen here in a candid behind-the-scenes shot taken on the set in 1970.

When the topic of famous, respected film schools is mentioned, which come to mind first?

For many, it may be the University of Southern California, where the likes of Darryl Zanuck and Irving Thalberg taught, and successful filmmakers such as George Lucas, John Singleton, Robert Zemeckis, and Ryan Coogler studied. For others, it may be NYU, which proudly claims Spike Lee, Charlie Kaufman, Woody Allen, Vince Gilligan, and Alec Baldwin among their alumni. The American Film Institute is where revered, iconoclastic directors like David Lynch, Terrence Malick, Ari Aster and Darren Aronofsky learned their craft. Then, there’s always UCLA’s film department, which boasts Alexander Payne, Gore Verbinski, Rob Reiner and celluloid provocateur Larry Clark in its list of graduates.

However, there’s another less formal but highly influential institution of higher learning which looms large over the cinematic developments of the past 70 years. I’m speaking of the "Roger Corman School of Film" — an immersive but unofficial vocational trade school that despite its lack of a physical campus, faculty list or even a class schedule, proved essential in the evolution of American filmmaking from the 1950s through the present day.

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