A cast of killers

 
9780091670801: A cast of killers

An illustrated account of the 1922 murder of flamboyant director William Desmond Taylor reconstructs the events leading up to the crime and speculates about the possible murderer. Reprint. NYT.

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From Publishers Weekly:

As he was researching his "official" biography of King Vidor, the late film director, Kirkpatrick made the discovery on which this true crime story is built. Vidor, planning to make a movie about William Desmond Taylor, murdered in 1922, set out to investigate the unsolved crime 45 years later. Taylor had been a famous director of silents and his death was a sensation that ruined the careers of actresses Mary Miles Minter, Mabel Normand (the victim's reputed lovers) and other Hollywood luminaries. Kirkpatrick skillfully leads the reader into Vidor's search as the director studies old files and questions people in the movie colony who remembered those involved in the tragedy. The result is a riveting mystery. In his dramatic reconstruction, Kirkpatrick uncovers Vidor's convincing evidence, never disclosed by the director, that Taylor was killed by the mother of ingenue Minter. Photos not seen by PW. 50,000 first printing; major ad/promo; author tour. (June
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal:

In 1922, Hollywood film director William Desmond Taylor was murdered, and the crime was never officially solved. In 1967, the late director King Vidor decided to investigate the mystery in order to make a film about it. (No film resulted.) Kirkpatrick recounts the story of Vidor's sleuthing, which uncovered scandal, corruption, coverups, and, ultimately, Vidor believed, the identity of the killer. This is a well-researched book, breezily related, whose impact is lessened somewhat by digressions into Vidor's personal life. The combination of Hollywood and murder is likely to be popular. For most public libraries. Gregor A. Preston, Univ. of California Lib., Davis
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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