Photoplay Magazine (US) , April 1980
Excerpts from "Linda Blair"
(No Author Given)
Article mainly discusses Ms. Blair's drug bust in Florida. But there were some Roller Boogie nuggets and here they are. It's amazing how human Linda Blair is, especially when she discusses her battle with weight (like the rest of us normal people do.) You go Linda!
"The impression she's giving at the moment is of self-assured young woman who, at 21, still retains some charming childlike mannerisms. We're in her suite at the Regency Hotel in NY, where's she's come to promote her latest movie, Roller Boogie. She's been on a whirlwind schedule of television and press interviews, braving them all out with good humor--and for good reason: She's got a percentage of the take of the film.
"I didn't get any money for it," she explains. "I have a percentage, so if it does well, I get money. If I'm a good girl, I get a reward." She pauses and laughs. "At the rate I'm going, I'll never be rich!"
On her weight in Roller Boogie:
"I don't know, maybe I don't see myself the way I really am, but I think I photograph a good ten pounds heavier than I am in person."
"She's right. The Linda I'm looking at is -- if not quite skinny -- slim and well proportioned, with a delicately featured face. She does admit, though, to having a lot of trouble with her weight."
"I'm very short -- only 5'2"-- so I look at food and it goes.." She smacks her hips and thighs. "When I'm at home, every day I wake up and say, 'We're going on a diet today."
"To cheer her up, I tell her how at the screening of Roller Boogie the night before the men in the audience had had a truly lascivious reaction to the sight of Linda in her stretchy little latex numbers. "Really? You know, I really wouldn't understand why, 'cause thin is so in and everybody in that film is so skinny. When I saw it, I said, 'I'm ten pounds heavier than anyone else.' It's very depressing. I struggle and I really try to diet for three days -- and then I stuff my face."
From "Film Threat" an online interview with Roller Boogie director Mark Lester by David Grove
"Irwin and I got along great. He was very eager to finance more
movies after 'Halloween,'" recalls Lester. "I met Irwin in Cannes and we started
talking movies and he wanted to know if I had any ideas. Well, a few weeks later
I was roller skating in Venice and you know, roller stuff was a really big fad
back then, so that's when I got the idea for 'Roller Boogie.' Irwin bit
and we were shooting in no time.
"Roller Boogie" starred Linda Blair as a young skater who along with her friends teams up to stop the closure of their favorite rink from an evil magnate. Former Friday scream queen Kimberly Beck also starred in the film. For Lester working on the film was the most fun he's ever had on a project, and maybe the most interesting given that he once again was teamed with an eclectic crew of former and current stars beginning with "Exorcist" star Blair who would go on to team with Yablans in "Hell Night."
"Oh yeah, I loved 'Boogie.' Still do," says Lester with a laugh. "I don't care what people say. The picture did okay too. Anyway, Linda was at a point in her career where after 'The Exorcist II,' you know, her career was kind of in a slump. We had a list of actors, but we chose Linda. Part of the reason was that her asking price at that moment was what we could afford. Another thing was that she was about to go on trial in Texas for something, and there was lots of publicity around her, so I think that hurt her, but she was great. She eventually had to leave to go to the trial but she did great in the film."
Aside from Blair, "Boogie" gave Lester a chance to work with ace cinematographer Dean Cundey, then fresh off his "Halloween" triumph, and "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" photographer Daniel Pearl, who would go on to work on "Class of 1984." As well, "Halloween" and frequent Carpenter camera operator Raymond Stella worked on the film. "Oh yeah, those guys were great, although I don't remember working with Daniel on that one. I think he did a lot of the roller skating camerawork," says Lester. "You could see that Dean was a great talent. Those guys made the film look really slick. They made it look at least twice what it cost."
Once "Roller Boogie" was completed, Lester threw his hat back in the producing ring when he oversaw production of Tobe Hooper's classic "The Funhouse," but not before he was offered the chance to direct another, more notorious film - "Hell Night."