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David F. Friedman

Highest Rated: 78% Mau Mau Sex Sex (2001)

Lowest Rated: 38% Blood Feast (1963)

Birthday: Dec 24, 1923

Birthplace: Not Available

Producer, screenwriter, and unrepentant carny David F. Friedman spent the bulk of the 20th century making and distributing exploitation films, working with some of the most notorious figures in the business and eventually adding his own name to that list. Born and raised in Alabama, Friedman became interested in showbiz at an early age. As a youth, he spent time in movie theaters owned by his uncle, and he worked with traveling carnivals during the summers while attending Cornell University. After a stint in the army, Friedman was hired by Paramount Pictures, where he worked in the distribution and publicity departments. He went independent in 1956 and hooked up with legendary road-show entrepreneur Kroger Babb, learning invaluable promotional scams from the veteran producer and eventually becoming a partner in his company, Modern Film Distributors. In the early '60s, Friedman made a series of films with director Herschell Gordon Lewis, starting with a number of fairly typical low-budget, nudist-colony features. While brainstorming a way to stay a step ahead of their competitors, the pair decided to switch to horror, and created what most regard as the very first "gore" films; Blood Feast, 2000 Maniacs, and Color Me Blood Red were crudely fashioned, but focused attention on graphic, bloody violence that films of the past had only hinted at. They were extremely successful, for better or for worse, helped ensure that future horror movies left far less to the imagination. Friedman next turned his attention to the adult film industry, following the zeitgeist of the times with stark, bad-tempered pictures that mixed nudity and simulated sex with brutality, also known as "roughies." As on-screen restrictions loosened in the early '70s, Friedman's films generally went easier on the violence and amplified the sexuality, leading to a string of bawdy softcore sex farces (Trader Hornee, The Erotic Adventures of Zorro, and Thar She Blows, among many others). Friedman was never interested in following the path of permissiveness all the way to hardcore pornography, so as triple-X films proliferated and the drive-in theaters that showed his pictures began closing, he decided to bow out of the business. Though retired, he held on to the rights to his films (which found a whole new audience on videotape) and kept his hand in the traveling carnival business. Friedman wrote a popular memoir entitled A Youth in Babylon: Confessions of a Trash-Film King and subsequently became known as the grand old man of exploitation cinema, in demand for documentaries and fan conventions for his colorful anecdotes and encyclopedic knowledge of low-budget film history.

Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

Movies

Credit
No Score Yet Bell, Bare and Beautiful Actor 2014
No Score Yet Daughter Of The Sun Screenwriter 2014
No Score Yet That's Sexploitation Actor 2013
No Score Yet The Thought Exchange Actor 2012
No Score Yet Bigfoot Terror Actor 2006
No Score Yet Blood Feast 2: All U Can Eat Executive Producer Producer Wedding Guest 2003
No Score Yet Schlock!: The Secret History of American Movies Actor 2003
78% Mau Mau Sex Sex Actor 2001
No Score Yet Schlock! The Secret History of American Movies Actor 2001
No Score Yet Southern Discomfort: Wrestling on the Indie Circuit Himself 2000
No Score Yet The Sore Losers Elder of the Lo-Fi Frequency 1997
No Score Yet Search for the Beast Actor 1997
No Score Yet Bikini Drive In J.B. 1994
No Score Yet Sex and Buttered Popcorn Actor 1989
No Score Yet Student Affairs Actor 1988
No Score Yet Johnny Firecloud Producer 1975
No Score Yet Bummer Director Producer 1973
No Score Yet La Noche de los mil gatos (Blood Feast) (The Night of a Thousand Cats) (Night of a 1000 Cats) Producer 1972
No Score Yet Trader Hornee Producer Actor Screenwriter 1970
No Score Yet Starlet Himself Screenwriter Producer 1969
No Score Yet She-Freak Producer Screenwriter 1967
No Score Yet A Smell of Honey, a Swallow of Brine? Screenwriter Producer 1966
No Score Yet The Notorious Daughter of Fanny Hill Screenwriter Producer 1966
41% Two Thousand Maniacs! Producer 1964
No Score Yet Color Me Blood Red Producer 1964
38% Blood Feast Producer Drunken Hotel Husband (uncredited) 1963
No Score Yet Scum of the Earth Producer 1963
No Score Yet Nature's Playmates Producer Screenwriter 1962

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