The guy who wrote the majority of Abel Ferrara’s work from the 70’s to the mid 90’s. Does anyone know what happened to him? He seems to have dissapeared off the face of the earth after The Funeral.
Aahh…didn’t know all those Ferrara films were written by the same guy
Holy shit, I’ve always been asking the same thing in my head for quite a while now. He wrote some really great movies with Ferrara. We need to contact the FBI or something because this guy needs to write more stuff.
He and Ferrara had a falling out, obviously, the exact nature of which no one other than the two men seem to know.
Matt Parks is Nicholas St. John under a pseudonym. Shhhhhh…..
I thought I heard Nicholas St. John found God or became a teacher or something….
From a 1997 interview:
Ferrara: "The bottom line is, he’s a believer, and it’s a simple thing on the one hand, the hardest thing in the world on the other. I’m a believer, but am I follower?
Question: Is that the difference between you and Nicky?
Ferrara: It starts there.
St. John (quoted in Brad Stevens’s book):
“Harvey [Keitel] and Abel ask very very tough questions. My problem is the answers. And if I am not ready to give an answer which I believe in 100 percent, I can’t do it . . . And that’s why I opted not to work on
Bad Lieutenant, basically for Christological reasons”
So he became a monk, according to Matt Parks.
There is no God.
Thanks for those interview snippets. I’ve also been pondering this question for a long time. However, I’ve also come to realize that at least three of Ferrara’s post-St. John films are better than anything they wrote together (Blackout, New Rose Hotel, and 4:44). Ferrara’s description of their falling out is fascinating in that he seems less and less sure of his answers but yet becomes more and more interesting as a result.
That said, it’s always sad to see productive partnerships run to an end. At least they finished on a very high note of the one-two of The Addition and The Funeral.
“I thought I heard Nicholas St. John found God or became a teacher or something…”
. . . and, actually, theologically, I’d imagine I’m closer to Ferrara than to St. John.
^ I just did some very quick google sleuthing going on the assumption that if he became a teacher, he went back to his original name and that he would be teaching in the greater New York area. I think I may have found him – the likely candidate is a middle school English teacher and around 60 years old – about the same age as Abel. Makes sense.
What does it mean to be theologically closer to Ferrara?
I’ve also heard Ferrara say in an interview (or remember reading it somewhere) that The Addiction represents St. John’s philosophy/theology best.
There’s a long conversation. Suffice to say, “I’m a believer, but am I follower?”
Catholic school, Ari?
^ I thought you were referring to chasing the dragon.
It’s a public school (don’t want the post the link since it has the guy’s email address on it and I’m figuring if it is in fact him, he doesn’t want to be found). That would be one hell of an 8th grade English teacher.
Yeah, I wouldn’t want to put the guy out there if he doesn’t want to be out there.
“chasing the dragon”
Naw, never had that kind of free time.
I remember watching the “Short Film on the Long Career of Abel Ferrara” extra on the King of New York DVD and they were all talking about how St. John had been working on what he called the “Frank White Story” for years until it eventually became King of New York. Apparently the original “Frank White Story” had much more of a life chronicling aspect to it than the film’s prison release and brief rise and fall story. I wonder if this had any strain added to their relationship in the long run.
Interesting that the original King of New York idea had more of a “life chronicling” aspect, because from what I understand Ferrara was trying to get a prequel to the film off the ground throughout the 2000’s.
I also think I read somewhere that St John was getting increasingly pissed at Ferrara progressively ditching his dialouge in favor of improvisation, particularly with Dangerous Game.
I wonder if the two men are still in contact?
St.John found god? I thought he was always a believer? I"m sure i read that he attended Church at least once a week. He was a true believer, whereas Ferrara is more of a ‘lapsed Catholic’ who in some respects continues to see the world through a quasi-religious lens. They worked extremely well together.
’Found God?" Is God like the car keys or something?
Is Ferrara a reliable narrator? It seems like all of this business about St. John getting God comes from Abel’s interviews (who seemed more like the Cain of that relationship).
“St.John found god? I thought he was always a believer?”
Yeah, he was.
ARI: Nah, i doubt he is reliable.
I really wish St.John would come back into the picture. I understand the arguments for Ferrara developing as a formalist since their partnership ended, but i can’t help but feel in some respects that this ‘shift’ is perhaps more due to a lack of ideas than any real creative ingenuity on his behalf.