Nicholas St. John (screenwriter)

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For the English politician, see Nicholas St. John.

Nicodemo Oliverio,[1][2] better known as Nicholas St. John, is an American screenwriter. He has collaborated with film director Abel Ferrara in nine films together including The Driller Killer (1979), Body Snatchers (1993) and The Addiction (1995).[3] For his work in the film, The Funeral (1996), also directed by Ferrara, St. John was nominated for the Independent Spirit Award for Best Screenplay.[4] Other films St. John wrote include Ms. 45 (1981) and King of New York (1990), both of them also directed by Ferrara.[5]

Life and career[edit]

St. John attended Lakeland High School.[1] It was at high school where he met and befriended Ferrara.[5] Together, both he and Ferrara attended and graduated from New York University.[2][6]

Under the pseudonym Nicholas George, St. John wrote the screenplay for Ferrara's 1976 pornographic film, 9 Lives of a Wet Pussy.[7] He went on to write the screenplay of Ferrara's directorial debut, The Driller Killer (1979).[3] Then, St. John wrote Ferrara's second film, Ms. 45 (1981).[6]

A notable Ferrara film in which St. John did not write the screenplay was Bad Lieutenant (1992). A devout Catholic, St. John refused to work with Ferrara on that particular film because of its blasphemous images.[8] St. John also tried to dissuade Ferrara and Harvey Keitel, who played the titular role, from even making it.[9] Despite this, St. John wrote the scripts of Ferrara's next films Body Snatchers[9] and Dangerous Game,[10] both released in 1993. The last two films that St. John has written to date are Ferrara's The Addiction (1995) and The Funeral (1996).[11]

In 2005, it was reported that St. John co-wrote a script with Danish filmmaker Nicolas Winding Refn titled Billy’s People.[12] However, the script was never made into a film due to box office disaster results from Refn's films Bleeder (1999) and Fear X (2003).[13]

Ferrara said of St. John in 2015, "We started making films when we were 16, and then at a certain point he just had enough, you dig? He didn’t dig the business, he didn’t dig the spirituality of the business, didn’t dig the lifestyle; and at the height of his game, of our game, he just said: enough."[14] It has been said that St. John and Ferrara's longtime collaboration ended as a result of a falling-out.[15]

Filmography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Nicole Brenez, Abel Ferrara, University of Illinois Press, 2007 page 2
  2. ^ a b Kjolseth, Pablo. "THE DRILLER KILLER - FROM THE SICK MIND OF ABEL FERRARA". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 11 May 2016.
  3. ^ a b Chris Vander Kaay and Kathleen Fernandez-Vander Kaay, Horror Films by Subgenre: A Viewer's Guide, McFarland, 2016 page 196
  4. ^ Puig, Claudia (10 January 1997). "'Fargo' Is Leader in Spirit Award Nominations". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 11 May 2016.
  5. ^ a b Goldstein, Patrick (28 October 1990). "MOVIES : The Prince of Darkness : Director Abel Ferrara practices a kind of gonzo filmmaking, and his violent vision isn't a particularly popular one in Hollywood". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 11 May 2016.
  6. ^ a b Ric Meyers, For One Week Only: The World of Exploitation Films, Eirini Press, 2011 page 49
  7. ^ Nicole Brenez, Abel Ferrara, University of Illinois Press, 2007 page 174
  8. ^ "Abel Ferrara Biography". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 11 May 2016.
  9. ^ a b Wellman, Chris (3 January 1993). "Abel Ferrara: Lights! Camera! Anguish!". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 11 May 2016.
  10. ^ Phyllis Rauch Klotman, Gloria J. Gibson, Frame by Frame Two, Indiana University Press, 1997 page 120
  11. ^ Greg Merritt, Celluloid Mavericks: The History of American Independent Film, Basic Books, 2000 page 364
  12. ^ Kaufman, Anthony (1 February 2005). "Nicholas Winding Refn's Wages of "Fear X"". IndieWire. Retrieved 12 December 2016.
  13. ^ McClanahan, Erik (20 September 2011). "The Road To 'Drive': The Films Of Nicolas Winding Refn". IndieWire. Retrieved 13 December 2016.
  14. ^ Righelato, Rowan (11 September 2015). "Abel Ferrara: 'Pasolini's death is not some kind of fictional event'". The Guardian. Retrieved 14 September 2016.
  15. ^ Tobias, Scott (15 January 2009). "King Of New York". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 13 December 2016.

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