Bret Easton Ellis on Less Than Zero, Its Adaptation, and Its Sequel Imperial Bedrooms

But then it happened really fast.

It happened super fast. It happened unbelievably fast, less than two and a half years.

And the director has only made two films since then.

I know. The second film he made, Where the Money Is, actually opened on the same weekend that American Psycho opened. He had a miserable experience on Less than Zero. I never met him until about three weeks before the movie opened. I was going to a screening of the movie, and he wanted to meet with me, and I didn't know why. I met him at 5 o'clock in the afternoon at Nell's in Manhattan. He was the only person in the place, and he was drunk, and he looked up and said, "I'm so sorry. I'm so sorry."

He intended to make a tougher movie?

I think so, yeah. I mean, Andrew McCarthy's talked about this as well. I think one of the producers took over and kind of directed the last half of the movie.

Did you have any say in Andrew McCarthy doing the audiobook for Imperial Bedrooms?

Well, not input, but...I don't know how it came about. The producer of the audiobook, who produced the audiobook of Lunar Park, asked me if I had any ideas. I think maybe he tossed out three or four names, and I thought the best out of them would be Andrew McCarthy, for any number of reasons.


Are you still in touch with Robert Downey Jr?


The film helped launch him.

It did. You know what, we were both partying a lot when we knew each other. I think there came a point where Robert had to move away from the people he'd been doing that with, and I completely understand that. During my partying days, I had friends who stopped doing it, and they just couldn't hang out with me anymore. I think that was one of the reasons that Robert and I have not spoken in a while.

He's in a very different place.

A totally different place. It's unbelievable.

TOMORROW: Ellis takes on American Psycho, his unnerving first meeting with Christian Bale, and his issues with female directors.

Pages: 1 2


  • Krugmanic Depressive says:

    And with this series, I now have something to build my week around...

  • Berlin says:

    "Less Than Zero" didn't launch Robert Downey, Jr. "Weird Science" did. Watch it (again) if you want to see a youthful and raw RDJ.

  • The Winchester says:

    You can't deny his brilliant work in Back to School, either.

  • Will says:

    Call me crazy, but I loved this adaptation. I was surprised how far the movie went for its time (e.g. McCarthy walking in on Downey mid-BJ). The production design and costumes are so incredibly evocative of the 80s, too. If I remember correctly, Roger Ebert loves this gem, too.

  • Victor Ward says:

    If you were fucking Christian Bale five times a week, I still wouldn't be as jealous of you as I am over your getting to speak with Ellis. He is my favorite author/artist/whatever by far, even if he never responds to my adorable if slightly creepy/obsessive tweets.

  • Kyle Buchanan says:

    I never would have gotten that from your screen name!

  • […] Bret Easton Ellis on Less Than Zero, Its Adaptation, and Its Sequel Imperial Bedrooms […]