What did you think of the Doors movie? Of the actress who played you?
Oliver Stone, who is, of course, Satan, raped both me and Jim on screen. The whole story of my encounter with him is laid out in detail in Strange Days, but I will say here that even had the movie been about Led Zeppelin, for God’s sake, I would still think it was a vile evil nasty piece of work.
Oliver had the chance to make the Citizen Kane of Sixties movies, the Lawrence of Arabia of that amazing era — and Jim is the ONLY rock star about whom such a movie could have been made — and he blew it. I mean, here is this guy who has absolutely everything going for him: He’s brilliant, he’s romantic, he’s talented, he’s gorgeous, he’s a creative genius, he’s one of the greatest rock vocalists of all time, he has two mythic and dramatic love relationships with two women of similar age and similar hair and similar names who could not otherwise be more different — and he lives his far too brief life in the most unbelievable pain, and the most unbelievable excesses, doing his best to destroy not only himself but anyone who cares about him, and he dies doomed and alone at 27. WHY??? The answer to that could have made a compelling piece of cinema.
So does Oliver Stone make an unbearably beautiful, heartbreaking piece of art from all this? No! He makes a lying vicious mean-spirited piece of unmitigated garbage. What I will NEVER forgive him for is that you don’t care that the Jim character is dead at the end of the movie; nowhere in that evil, damned piece of meretricious slander is the viewer made to care about Jim and what becomes of him. That’s not an artist at work, that’s just Oliver fucking Stone doing business as usual, and that is why I say in Days that had he been present when I first saw the movie at a screening, I would have ripped his throat out. The upside to that being we would never have had another Oliver Stone movie inflicted on us again…
It’s interesting, though, that ever since The Doors he’s become a sort of national punchline — you might even think somebody put a CURSE on him. Hey, Oliver! What goes around comes around, camera boy — didn’t the 60’s teach you anything?
I’ve been told that Oilier — oops, Oliver has been quoted recently as saying that since the character Patricia was always intended to be a composite, she should not have been called ‘Patricia Kennealy.’ He and I agreed before shooting ever started that though there is some merit to that, it seemed to both of us that any woman in Jim’s life depicted in the movie who was a rock journalist, a witch, who married him in a pagan ceremony, who got pregnant by him and who confronted him in Miami about the pregnancy, could ONLY be me, and I insisted the character must bear my name, thinking it would be too tiresome explaining afterwards why she did all these things that only I in Jim’s life ever did but was called ‘Anne Riordan’, not ‘Patricia Kennealy’…
Oliver did tell me that the character would do things I didn’t do, but he never told me about the things the Jim character would do and say to her, which are now being taken as truth by credulous ignoramuses who think (if you can call it that), ‘Hey, it’s in the movie, duh, it must be true!” Well, wrong, wrong and wrong again…and several persons connected with the film have since apologized to me, privately and profoundly. But they are not the guilty party.
What Oliver did to me was terrible. But what he did to Jim was criminal, and if he’s really the devout Buddhist he claims he is (or even if he’s not) he should know that he will pay. And Jim and I will be around to watch.
On the upside, Kathleen Quinlan, who played me, became and remains a dear friend; she even borrowed my 18th-century diamond drop earrings to wear to the Oscars in 1996 (she was nominated as Best Supporting Actress for her role in Apollo 13; didn’t win, but the earrings looked fabulous on TV, as did she), and there’s no greater esteem than that! I mean, she could have worn Harry Winston, for heaven’s sake, much grander jewels by far, but she went with Patricia Morrison… She is a lovely, gifted, generous, humorous woman, and I am eternally honored by her friendship and that of her husband Bruce Abbott, a great gentleman and a vivid actor (Dark Justice).
The character Patricia, though she isn’t entirely me, and does things I never did but have been erroneously blamed for, is the ONLY strong woman character Oliver has ever managed to get on film — she’s smart and sexy and funny, she doesn’t take crap from her guy, she has a life of her own apart from him, and when he’s with her it’s the only time in the whole damn movie where the Jim character actually seems to be enjoying himself. (Though Oliver still couldn’t get it right, not even with the real-life woman in question telling him nothing but the endless truth.) And Kathleen made me look soooo good…
(Not that I didn’t look modestly good in real life, I hasten to add: I was never pretty like Pamela, or indeed beautiful like Kathleen, but in my days with Jim I was 117 pounds when I was thin and 125 when I was fat; either way, at almost 5’9″ that’s far from chubby. One has put on a few pounds since then, of course, but hey! I’m 50 years old, my husband isn’t around, I don’t have to weigh 117 pounds anymore if I don’t feel like it…and I still have red hair down to my behind.)