I'm REALLY, REALLY looking forward to this book! Greg's Web site says it will be published on June 17th, McFarland's site says this fall, either way I'm very excited!
Here's a description from McFarland:
In 1944, Laird Cregar played Jack the Ripper in The Lodger, giving one of the most haunting performances in Hollywood history. It was the climax of a strange celebrity that saw the young American actor—who stood 6’ 3" and weighed more than 300 pounds—earn distinction as a portrayer of psychopaths and villains. Determined to break free of this typecasting, he desperately desired to become “a beautiful man,” embarking on an extreme diet that killed him at 31. This first biography of Cregar tells the heartbreaking story of the brilliant but doomed actor. Appendices cover his film, theatre, and radio work. Many never before published photographs are included.
Here's a description from Greg's Web site:
He won his greatest fame as a mad, twitching Jack the Ripper in 1944’s The Lodger, but his most baroque role
came via his real-life, pitifully untimely death. Laird Cregar, the young, brilliant, behemothic actor, obsessively waged a
doomed battle with 20th Century-Fox and his personal demons as he fatally dreamed of becoming “a beautiful man.” But the crash dieting and plastic surgery went awry, the dream became a manically self-destructive nightmare -- and thus did a 320-lb. character star become a 220 lb. corpse.
Laird Cregar: A Hollywood Tragedy deeply explores the true story of Cregar and examines his film performances, the blessings and curses of the Hollywood contract system of the 1940s and the legacy of an actor who might have become one of the cinema’s greatest horror stars -- and character actors.
Lavishly illustrated with stills and candid photos.
Also coming in 2017 from Greg:
One Man Crazy: The Life and Death of Colin Clive, Hollywood’s Frankenstein (Midnight Marquee Press, 2017)
He immortalized Henry Frankenstein in Universal’s Frankenstein and Bride of Frankenstein; his tragic personal life was as horrific as the classic melodramas in which he starred. Deeply researched (with fresh and startling discoveries), richly-illustrated (with many rare photos), this sympathetic but unsparingly revealing biography will be the definitive account of the brilliant, hypersensitive actor who unforgettably cried “It’s alive!”
The Very Witching Time of Night, II (McFarland & Company, Inc. Publishers, 2017)
The critical and popular success of The Very Witching Time of Night: Dark Alleys of Classic Horror Cinema has inspired a contract for The Very Witching Time of Night, Part II. As with the original book, there will be 13 chapters, all on fascinating areas of Hollywood horror, with full coverage of never-before-covered topics and fresh slants on vintage favorites such as Island of Lost Souls and Tower of London. Exhaustively researched and profusely illustrated with many rare photos.