Ted Demme

Last updated
Ted Demme
Born
Edward Kern Demme

(1963-10-26)October 26, 1963
New York City, United States
DiedJanuary 13, 2002(2002-01-13) (aged 38)
Santa Monica, California, United States
Occupation Film director, film producer, actor
Years active1988–2002
Spouse(s)
Amanda Scheer
(m. 1994;his death 2002)
Children2
Relatives Jonathan Demme (uncle)

Edward Kern "Ted" Demme [1] [2] ( /ˈdɛmi/ DEM-ee; [3] October 26, 1963 – January 13, 2002) was an American director, producer, and actor. [4]

Contents

Early life

Demme was born in New York City, the son of Gail (née Kern) and Frederick Rogers Demme. [5] He grew up in Rockville Centre, New York on Long Island and attended South Side Senior High School. He graduated from SUNY-Cortland in 1985. He was the nephew of film producer and director Jonathan Demme. [6]

Career

Demme's media career may have begun with a radio show at WSUC-FM (SUNY-Cortland), a mix of comedy and talk radio with the usual sidekick, as well as some music and was widely listened to on and off campus.[ citation needed ] His career had modest beginnings—starting as a production assistant at MTV, he later became a producer in the On-Air Promotions Department and created the cable network's hip-hop show Yo! MTV Raps (with Peter Dougherty), and directed other projects for them, including the black-and-white rants starring then-unknown chain-smoking comedian Denis Leary.[ citation needed ]

Over the course of his career, he established a group of actors that he chose to work with on more than one occasion. The most frequently used of these was Leary, whom he directed as a lead or star in No Cure for Cancer , The Ref , and Monument Ave. [ citation needed ]Leary produced the 2001 crime drama film Blow , which starred Johnny Depp as George Jung and was directed by Demme. [7]

Personal life

Demme was married to Amanda Scheer, with whom he had two children. [2] Scheer later opened several popular Los Angeles bars, including Teddy's at the Roosevelt Hotel, named in honor of her late husband. [8] He was a fan of the Green Bay Packers.[ citation needed ]

Death

On January 13, 2002, while playing a celebrity basketball game, Demme collapsed and died of a heart attack which may have been related to cocaine later found in his system during an autopsy. [9] [10] Actor Michael Rapaport was one of the participants in the game, and missed a taping of the IFC television series Dinner for Five , as discussed on season 1 episode 5 and season 1 episode 7 of that series. Demme was cremated, and his ashes were given to his family.[ citation needed ]

Tributes

Much of one edition of the IFC program Dinner for Five was given over to a description of Demme's last night and fond reminiscences about his life, mostly by Denis Leary and the show's host Jon Favreau. This touched on Demme's being a fan of the Green Bay Packers and his fondness for playing practical jokes.

At the 2002 Golden Globe awards show, one week following Demme's death, Kevin Spacey wore a picture of Demme on his suit jacket. [11] He was also in the 74th Academy Awards In Memoriam tribute that was also presented by Kevin Spacey.

His uncle Jonathan Demme's remake of Charade , The Truth About Charlie , was dedicated in his memory.

The 2003 album Blackberry Belle by The Twilight Singers led by Greg Dulli, was written in tribute to Demme, Dulli's close friend. Dulli had been working on another project, titled Amber Headlights (which would later see the light of day in 2005), but abandoned those sessions due to Demme's death. The recordings which followed, fueled in part by the memory of Demme, resulted in Blackberry Belle.

The 2002 film Punch-Drunk Love , written and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, is dedicated to Demme.

Filmography

Awards and nominations

YearAwardResultCategoryFilm
1996 San Sebastián International Film Festival Nominated Golden Shell Beautiful Girls
1999 Emmy Award Won Outstanding Made for Television Movie A Lesson Before Dying(Shared with Robert Benedetti, Ellen Krass, and Joel Stillerman)
2001NominatedOutstanding Nonfiction SpecialA Decade Under the Influence(Shared with Alison Palmer Bourke, Caroline Kaplan, Jerry Kupfer, Gini Reticker, and Jonathan Sehring)
2001 Karlovy Vary International Film Festival NominatedCrystal GlobeBlow
2003 National Board of Review of Motion Pictures NominatedWilliam K. Everson Film History AwardA Decade Under the Influence(Shared with Richard LaGravenese)
2003 Sundance Film Festival NominatedGrand Jury PrizeA Decade Under the Influence(Shared with Richard LaGravenese)

Related Research Articles

Jonathan Demme American director, producer and screenwriter

Robert Jonathan Demme was an American director, producer, and screenwriter. He is best known for directing the psychological horror The Silence of the Lambs (1991), for which he won the Academy Award for Best Director. He also directed Melvin and Howard (1980), Swing Shift (1984), Something Wild (1986), Married to the Mob (1988), the concert film Stop Making Sense (1984), Philadelphia (1993) and Rachel Getting Married (2008).

<i>Beautiful Girls</i> (film) 1996 film by Ted Demme

Beautiful Girls is a 1996 American romantic comedy-drama film directed by Ted Demme from a screenplay written by Scott Rosenberg, starring Matt Dillon, Lauren Holly, Timothy Hutton, Rosie O'Donnell, Martha Plimpton, Natalie Portman, Michael Rapaport, Mira Sorvino and Uma Thurman.

<i>Blow</i> (film) 2001 biopic about George Jung directed by Ted Demme

Blow is a 2001 American biographical crime film about American cocaine smuggler George Jung, directed by Ted Demme. David McKenna and Nick Cassavetes adapted Bruce Porter's 1993 book Blow: How a Small Town Boy Made $100 Million with the Medellín Cocaine Cartel and Lost It All for the screenplay. It is based on the real-life stories of George Jung, Pablo Escobar, Carlos Lehder Rivas, and the Medellín Cartel. The film's title comes from a slang term for cocaine.

The Afghan Whigs band

The Afghan Whigs are an American rock band from Cincinnati, Ohio, United States. Originally active from 1986 to 2001, they have since reformed. The group – with core members Greg Dulli, Rick McCollum, and John Curley (bass) – rose up around the grunge movement, evolving from a garage band in the vein of the Replacements to incorporate more R&B and soul influences into their sound and image. After releasing their first album independently in 1988, the band signed to the Seattle-based label Sub Pop. They released their major-label debut and fourth album, Gentlemen, in 1993. Pitchfork described them as "one of the few alt-bands to flourish on a major label" in the 1990s.

State University of New York College at Cortland

The State University of New York College at Cortland is a public college in Cortland, New York. It is part of the State University of New York (SUNY) system.

George Jung major player in the cocaine trade in the United States in the 1970s and early 1980s

George Jacob Jung, nicknamed Boston George and El Americano, is an American former drug trafficker and smuggler who was a major figure in the cocaine trade in the United States in the 1970s and early 1980s. Jung was a part of the Medellín Cartel, which was responsible for up to 85% of the cocaine smuggled into the United States. He specialized in the smuggling of cocaine from Colombia on a large scale. His life story was portrayed in the biopic Blow (2001), starring Johnny Depp. Jung was released from prison on June 2, 2014, after serving nearly 20 years for drug-smuggling. On December 6, 2016, Jung was arrested for violating his parole. He was arrested while giving a speech in San Diego.

The Twilight Singers

The Twilight Singers are an American indie rock band. The group was initially formed as a side project of The Afghan Whigs leader Greg Dulli in 1997. After the Afghan Whigs disbanded, Dulli used The Twilight Singers as his own artistic vehicle, and has now released five studio albums backed by worldwide tours.

<i>The Ref</i> 1994 film by Ted Demme

The Ref is a 1994 American black comedy film directed by Ted Demme, starring Denis Leary, Judy Davis and Kevin Spacey.

André "Dr. Dré" Brown is an American radio personality and former MTV VJ.

<i>Monument Ave.</i> 1998 film by Ted Demme

Monument Ave., originally titled Snitch in the United States and titled Noose in Australia, is a 1998 American crime comedy-drama film directed by Ted Demme and starring Denis Leary. The film also stars Famke Janssen, Martin Sheen, Ian Hart, and Lenny Clarke. Cam Neely also makes a brief appearance as a man returning home from work who finds his house has been broken into. The film takes place in Charlestown, Massachusetts and centers on small-time criminal Bobby O'Grady (Leary), who becomes conflicted due to Charlestown's code of silence when his loyalty and drive for self-preservation are tested after two of his close family members are gunned down by their boss.

Paul Scheer American actor, comedian, writer, and producer

Paul Christian Scheer is an American actor, comedian, writer, producer, director, and podcaster.

<i>Dinner for Five</i> US television program

Dinner for Five is a television program in which actor and film director Jon Favreau and a revolving guest list of celebrities eat, drink and talk. The program aired on the Independent Film Channel with Favreau the co-executive producer with Peter Billingsley.

Bob Gosse is an American film producer, film director and actor.

<i>Blackberry Belle</i> 2003 studio album by The Twilight Singers

Blackberry Belle is the second full-length album released by The Twilight Singers. It was released by One Little Indian Records on October 14, 2003 and features guest appearances by Mathias Schneeberger, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Stanton Moore, Petra Haden, Kamasi Washington and Mark Lanegan. The album is a tribute to director Ted Demme, a close friend of Greg Dulli's who died of a heart attack while playing a game of basketball in January 2002. Dulli had been working on another project entitled Amber Headlights, but abandoned those sessions due to Demme's death. The recordings which followed, fueled in part by the memory of Demme, resulted in Blackberry Belle.

Joshua Jacob Marston is an American screenwriter and film director best known for the film Maria Full of Grace.

R-Kal K-Quan Truluck ( AR-kal TROO-luk was an American professional football player. R-Kal died on November 29, 2019 due to complications from ALS and cancer.

<i>Subway Stories</i> 1997 television film

Subway Stories: Tales from the Underground is a film made in 1997 and produced by Home Box Office for television. It began as a contest among New Yorkers who submitted stories about their experiences within the New York City Subway. HBO picked ten of the stories and cast mostly well-known or accomplished actors, and ten well-respected directors.

<i>Amber Headlights</i> 2005 studio album by Greg Dulli

Amber Headlights is an album by Greg Dulli. In 2001, Dulli started to work on the follow-up to The Twilight Singers' debut album Twilight as Played by The Twilight Singers. However, the death of his close friend Ted Demme in January 2002 led him to decide to start a new project in tribute to Demme that would eventually become Blackberry Belle. The song "Cigarettes" became "Follow You Down" on Blackberry Belle. Three years later, Dulli decided to release the songs on his own label, Infernal Recordings.

Greg Dulli American musician

Greg Dulli is an American musician. He has been a member of The Afghan Whigs and The Twilight Singers.

Amanda Scheer Demme is an American photographer and creative director. Previously a music supervisor, label owner, and artist manager, she is best known as a nightlife producer. Demme was described by the Los Angeles Times as an "expert at 'building a room,' choosing a precise mix of guests, sculpting space with light and shadow, and cultivating a mood something akin to performance art." She conceptualized and shot the award-winning #theemptychair image for New York magazine's 2015 cover story "Bill Cosby: The Women."

References

  1. Instantcheckmate.com
  2. 1 2 "Ted Demme". The Independent. London. January 17, 2002. Retrieved November 22, 2008.
  3. NLS Other Writings, Say How: A, B, C, D Library of Congress.
  4. "Ted Demme, 38, Director for TV And for Movies, Including 'Blow'". The New York Times . January 16, 2002.
  5. Familytreemaker.genealogy.com
  6. Susman, Gary (January 14, 2002). "He Was the Man". ew.com. Retrieved November 22, 2008.
  7. Turner, Megan (April 1, 2001). "Just Say 'Blow': Director Ted Demme Captures the Glitz and the Agony of a Big-Time Drug Dealer". New York Post. Retrieved 18 January 2020.
  8. Baltin, Steve (June 23, 2005). "Invitations are being sent". The L.A. Times. Retrieved November 22, 2008.
  9. "Demme took cocaine, says coroner". BBC News . February 3, 2002. Retrieved November 22, 2008.
  10. Andy Taylor-Fabe (2002-01-15). "Cardiac arrest claims life of Blow director Ted Demme". The Michigan Daily . Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  11. Harris, Beth. "Awards return glitz to Hollywood". Chicago Tribune.