The Richard O'Brien Crusade

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Transylvanian- Interview with Richard O'Brien

Recently I had the opportunity to speak briefly with Richard O'Brien. I tried to ask him some rather personal questions, and was quite surprised by the short, straightforward answers I received. For instance, who would imagine that the creative, wild, and witty O'Brien had a sane childhood?! What really spawned that fertile imagination of his? For now we'll have to ponder it a bit, but in upcoming issues we will delve a little more deeply into Richard and his madness.

As we all know, there is a sequel planned which will feature return performances by some of the starts of the RHPS. I asked Richard what was happening with the sequel.

Richard O'Brien: "Well, production is to begin in May of next year."

To go back a little bit, I then asked: "The persona of Frank N Furter that you created - was it based on Tim Curry's characterization, or did he..."

R.O'B.: "Well, I already had the text, but it was Curry and the part, Jim Sharman helped, it was a conglomerate effort."

Transylvanian: "When you work, which medium do you prefer, stage or film?"

R.O'B.: "Oh, I prefer the stage to film, I feel more fulfilled. With film I get frustrated sometimes...you have to hang about all the time."

Trans.: "What was your childhood like?"

R.O'B.: "It was sort of an ordinary childhood. I mean it was a bit, you know, shy. I had one or two friends as opposed to many. We found things to keep us occupied though..." (Here you can let your mind wander)

Trans.: "Did anyone influence you when you were younger?"

R.O'B.: "A few teachers, this one man was a sort of gentle, quiet man - he led the class around by the nose...he didn't force his philosophy on anyone, and I think he had a profound effect on me. He and another art teacher, they had this lifestyle, which you could feel - I can't explain really - it's a life thing."

Trans.: "Do you have any hobbies now?"

R.O'B.: "Well I like to play guitar and sing a bit, I play pool, and I like to draw. I may be doing Disaster (See last issue - Ed.) in Toronto around November with Pat Quinn, and Chris Malcolm will be involved; at least in production. Richard Hartley and I will be working on putting some rock 'n' roll in the music to sort of push it up a bit - I think people have expectations of us...I don't want people to be disappointed."

Trans.: "Disappointed?!"

R.O'B.: "Well, I think it was good - but we can write some R n' R. Yes, in fact, I don't know why we didn't in the first place..."

Trans.: "How do you feel about all the kids you've inspired?"

R.O'B.: "I feel very good about it!"

Trans.: "In closing, is there anything you'd like to say?"

R.O'B.: "I want to thank everyone for letting me entertain them with my madness, and I want to thank them for entertaining me with theirs."

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The Richard O'Brien Crusade est. 1996