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Directors Tell the Story, 2nd Edition by Mary Lou Belli, Bethany Rooney

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Chapter 16

Being a Director

Bethany tells this story about the first Hollywood director with whom she worked: “His name was Jackie Cooper. He had been a child movie star in the 1930s and a TV star in the 1960s, and by the time I met him, in 1978, he was a grizzled cowboy, wearing boots, rodeo-type silver belt buckle through the loops of his jeans, smoking a Cuban stogie. He was loud and brash and totally sure of himself. He was the director of the first show I worked on, called The White Shadow, which was about a white basketball coach teaching at an inner-city high school. Jackie was a fantastic director, especially for the young men who were the actors on the show; he gave them a lot of tough love, using cuss words and confrontation to get ...

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