His first feature, the nudist comedy The Immoral Mr. Teas (1959), cost $24,000 toproduce and eventually grossed more than $1,000,000 on the independent/exploitationcircuit, ensconcing Meyer as "King of the Nudies." Over the next decade, he madenearly twenty movies with a trademark blend of warped humor, huge-breasted starletsand All-American sleaze, including classics Faster Pussycat! Kill! Kill! (1965) andVixen (1968). Russ Meyer was a true auteur who wrote, directed, edited, photographedand distributed all his own films. He was able to finance each new film from theproceeds of the earlier ones, and became very wealthy in the process.Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! starring Tura Satana, is usually considered to be hismost well known film and it also routinely chosen as having some of the mostpowerful female characters ever seen on the big screen. It has a cult following allover the world and has inspired countless imitations, music videos and tributes. Because his films were expertly photographed and unique he was able to eventuallyfind mainstream success and press, even with an X rating. After the huge success ofboth Cherry, Harry & Raquel!(1966) and Vixen, Hollywood, which had initiallyrejected him, came calling and at the height of his independent career, Russ Meyergot the chance to make a big-budget Hollywood film for 20th Century Fox, producingthe brilliant but not-exactly-what-Fox-expected Beyond the Valley of the Dolls(1970, co-written by Roger Ebert). After a second film for Fox (The Seven Minutes)Meyer returned to the independent film world and made four more films, includingSupervixens (1974). Beneath the Valley of the Ultra-Vixens, his final film proper(1979), is considered by many to be his funniest and it is also his most sexuallyexplicit. It should be noted that Russ Meyer never did hardcore pornographic films and eventually retired because of how cynical and unprofessionalthe world of adult films had become by the late 1970s.