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View Full Version : Richard Simmons in a John Waters movie?


lissener
02-15-2000, 03:59 PM
Someone I work with tells me that pre-diet Richard Simmons was once in a John Waters movie. He played, apparently, a fat guy. She thinks it was Pink Flamingos, but IMDB has no such reference.

Any clues?

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If I were to say that today's tomatoes are an index of the decline of Western man I should be thought a crank but nations do not, I think, ascend on such tomatoes.
--Russell Hoban in _Turtle_Diary_

VileOrb
02-15-2000, 04:17 PM
Being an ex-and-future-Baltimoron, and from hanging out at the Club Charles and other venues that Mr. Waters frequents, I think I would have heard this before if it were true. However, maybe it is one of those things where everyone knows and talking about it as if it were a revelation would be showing your ignorance. Name dropping and being "in the know" rate up there with money and sex appeal in that crowd (luckily I get by on sex appeal :) ).

I can definitely see John getting along with Richard and using him. However, I have my doubts that Richard Simmons would be a part of Pink Flamingos. I know several people who were in Pink Flamingos and they claim that, other than Devine, the the cast was mostly made up of people who lives were in pretty bad shape. Several heroin addicts including one of my friends (now recovering) agreed to do the film for very little money because it was their only was to get ANY money. Whether you think Mr. Waters was abusing these down and outs, or just taking advantage of their angst to produce a piece of art for his minimal budget, depends somewhat upon your opinion of the film. Was Richard Simmons in a low enough point in his life to be a part of this crowd? Possibly.

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If men had wings,
and bore black feathers,
few of them would be clever enough to be crows.

- Rev. Henry Ward Beecher

VileOrb
02-15-2000, 04:22 PM
Boy, my brain's internal editor must be out of whack today. I'm writing some of the most over-complicated, difficult-to-interpret sentences of my life today. And I misspelled "Divine" to boot.

Padeye
02-15-2000, 04:29 PM
If Richard Simmons was in Pink Flamingos it's possible he wouldn't want anyone to know it today. As Vile points out, Waters' Dreamland group was rather a motley crew. Perhaps the only way to find out would be to trick Richard into singing Surfin' Bird. :D AFAIK Mink Stole is the only one of his original group still acting.

Eve
02-15-2000, 04:29 PM
"Was Richard Simmons in a low enough point in his life to be a part of this crowd?"

—Ahem, I was part of this crowd in the mid 1970s . . . No, Richard Simmons was NOT in Pink Flamingos, but maybe John used him as a celeb joke in one of the later films. By the way, you can spot me as an extra in Polyester—I came along with Edie Massey for the ride that day.

VileOrb
02-15-2000, 05:24 PM
Eve, do you know Danny who played Divine's son in Flamingos? I'll be seeing him when I visit Bmore next month. He shoots a very good game of pool when he's in the right mood, but I've been working on my game.

salinqmind
02-15-2000, 08:39 PM
Richard Simmons did appear in an Italian movie, "Fellini Satyricon" back when he weighed like 300 lbs. I don't believe Richard Simmons was ever "down and out" enough to appear in a John Waters film, he has always had a very close loving relationship with his family. Can't picture him down in the gutter with druggies, his big vice was food when he was young.

salinqmind
02-15-2000, 08:40 PM
Not that he had a starring role in "Satyricon", he was an extra in a Roman banquet scene!

Eve
02-16-2000, 09:22 AM
Salinqmind, you seem to have a very odd idea of who the Dreamlanders were. Yes, some of them took drugs and others didn't. But being in one of John's movies has never been about being "down and out." In the early days (c1970-80), it was a group project of a buncha friends having fun. That's how I got into Polyester—I was hanging out with Edie Massey and she said, "I'm gonna be in a film, hon, ya wanna come?"

John and Divine and the crew, I might add, were always very professional—no drugs or anything like that on the set! After 1980, being in one of John's films was an honor and a hoot.

So no, we were NOT a bunch of drugged-out Bowery Bums. More like impish middle-class kids with movie cameras.

Oh, and Vile, I never met Danny Mills, but give him my best, anyway. Glad he's doing well.

02-16-2000, 10:00 AM
I've Always admired John Waters and wanted to be in one of his films. I still remember watching Pink Flamingos with a guy pal from church. He sat silently, but I never saw him again after that!

salinqmind
02-16-2000, 10:36 PM
Far be it from me to diss John Waters, "Dreamlanders", Baltimore, or "Pink Flamingos", I love all of these things. Please refer to VileOrb's post above stating that people in the cast of P.F. were in pretty bad shape, some were heroin addicts, and down and outs. I cannot believe Richard Simmons would be mixed up with any of them. I'll have to read his autobiography and see if he says anything about living in Baltimore.

Eve
02-17-2000, 09:18 AM
For goodness sake, most of the people in Pink Flamingos were rebellious suburban kids!!! Yes, Edie Massey had a few screws loose, and David Lochary and Danny Mills took more drugs than were popular even in the Seventies, but you are confusing the cast with their roles. Divine was not, in real life, "the filthiest person alive," he was the pampered upper-middle-class son of daycare workers.

I used to hang out a great deal with those good folk and, as the New Yorkers can tell you, I'm about as "down and out" as Princess Caroline.

Arken
02-17-2000, 11:59 AM
Richard Simmons' appearance in Satyricon was apparently the cause for his fanatical devotion to exercise. The 300+ pound Simmons was featured in one of the food orgy scenes. Upon seeing this, a friend sent him a letter which read, "fat people die young, Richard. Please don't die." The rest is terrifying and horrible and involves 50s music and Letterman appearances.

elelle
02-17-2000, 09:03 PM
Wow! Eve, you knew Edith Massey? My already swell opinion of you rockets ever skyward...

As an aside, I had the pleasure of an evening with John Waters 15 years ago, and he's not a wacked out freak. Gentle, well-spoken and razor sharp was my impression... I can see Eve as the perfect accompaniment to his circle.

lissener
02-18-2000, 11:37 AM
Stupidly, when I posted the question that started this discussion, I checked the little box that asked me if I wanted to be notified of responses.

Now that this thread has wandered completely off the original topic and has become nothing more than a pathetic exercise in nostalgia and namedropping, is there any way to UNcheck that box, or request that this topoic be closed?

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If I were to say that today's tomatoes are an index of the decline of Western man I should be thought a crank but nations do not, I think, ascend on such tomatoes.
--Russell Hoban in _Turtle_Diary_

Eve
02-18-2000, 11:48 AM
Or better yet, is there any way that lissner can butt the hell out and let the rest of us have a dignified conversation without being called pathetic name-droppers?

Those folks are my friends, not "names."

lissener
02-18-2000, 12:03 PM
See, Eve, Darlin, I'm tryna butt the hell out, but since I'm the original poster, I get an email every time you decide to take a moment out of your busy day to prolong this tired thread.

Why don't you start a new discussion, in MPSIMS, entitled, say, The Last Time I Had Friends.

------------------
If I were to say that today's tomatoes are an index of the decline of Western man I should be thought a crank but nations do not, I think, ascend on such tomatoes.
--Russell Hoban in _Turtle_Diary_

lissener
02-18-2000, 12:38 PM
See, Eve, Darlin, I'm tryna butt the hell out, but since I'm the original poster, I get an email every time you decide to take a moment out of your busy day to prolong this tired thread.

Why don't you start a new discussion, in MPSIMS, entitled, say, The Last Time I Had Friends.

------------------
If I were to say that today's tomatoes are an index of the decline of Western man I should be thought a crank but nations do not, I think, ascend on such tomatoes.
--Russell Hoban in _Turtle_Diary_

lissener
02-18-2000, 12:46 PM
See, Eve, Darlin, I'm tryna butt the hell out, but since I'm the original poster, I get an email every time you decide to take a moment out of your busy day to prolong this tired thread.

Why don't you start a new discussion, in MPSIMS, entitled, say, The Last Time I Had Friends.

------------------
If I were to say that today's tomatoes are an index of the decline of Western man I should be thought a crank but nations do not, I think, ascend on such tomatoes.
--Russell Hoban in _Turtle_Diary_

manhattan
02-18-2000, 02:22 PM
The original question apparently has been answered, so I’m going to close the thread at the OP’s request. I did that "email me when there’s a post" thing once. Exactly once. Never again. Oy.

lissener
02-19-2000, 01:26 AM
See, Eve, Darlin, I'm tryna butt the hell out, but since I'm the original poster, I get an email every time you decide to take a moment out of your busy day to prolong this tired thread.

Why don't you start a new discussion, in MPSIMS, entitled, say, The Last Time I Had Friends.

------------------
If I were to say that today's tomatoes are an index of the decline of Western man I should be thought a crank but nations do not, I think, ascend on such tomatoes.
--Russell Hoban in _Turtle_Diary_

jdavis
02-19-2000, 01:28 AM
Test.

G.B.H. Hornswoggler
02-19-2000, 01:30 AM
Wow, a four-repeat post over more than an hour. I bet your wife is proud of you!

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...but when you get blue, and you've lost all your dreams, there's nothing like a campfire and a can of beans!

Heliogabby
03-26-2015, 02:34 PM
Someone I work with tells me that pre-diet Richard Simmons was once in a John Waters movie. He played, apparently, a fat guy. She thinks it was Pink Flamingos, but IMDB has no such reference.

Any clues?

------------------
If I were to say that today's tomatoes are an index of the decline of Western man I should be thought a crank but nations do not, I think, ascend on such tomatoes.
--Russell Hoban in _Turtle_Diary_

I think you're probably referring to the frizzy haired guy in Female Trouble, Ernie, who wants a date with Gator. He looks and talks a bit like Richard Simmons, at least in the movie. He's not Richard Simmons, though. His name is Bob Adams.

engineer_comp_geek
03-26-2015, 03:29 PM
Moderator Note

Moving thread from General Questions to Cafe Society.

Also, please note that this thread is 15 years old and many of the original thread participants are no longer around to view or comment on any replies.