Really, everything you need to know about how bad Ed Wood movies were can be summed up in this quote from the man himself.
"Plan 9 is my pride and joy. We used Cadillac hubcaps for flying saucers in that."
Imagine the possibilities of spinners.
Though we should throw in the fact that the star (Bela Legosi) died after shooting just a couple of scenes, and they just had another dude stand in (strategically covering his face the while time).
People Actually Paid For This Crap?
Like many visionaries, Wood wouldn't get true recognition until after his death. Two years later, Wood was named "Worst Director of All Time" in a book called The Golden Turkey Awards. This brief moment of mockery resulted in a cult following for Ed Wood the likes of which would make L. Ron Hubbard jealous (and probably file a lawsuit of some sort). We're betting you can't find a video store that doesn't have a DVD of Plan 9 From Outer Space on the shelf right now (and Amazon has two pages of various re-issues of the film).
These days, tributes to Ed Wood abound. The University of Southern California holds an annual Ed Wood Film Festival in which students are given a theme and tasked with building an Ed Wood style movie around it. Unofficial (meaning made up) estimates put the cost of making all those films somewhere in the 11 dollar range. There is also a legally recognized Ed Wood religion, The Church of Ed Wood, replete with holidays (way to forget our Woodmas gift on October 10) and manifestos (Wood Kamph). In 2001, rocker and Halloween franchise resuscitator Rob Zombie named his sophomore solo album, The Sinister Urge, after an Ed Wood film of the same name.
That certainly is a homage.
But the biggest tribute to Wood came in 1994 with the aforementioned Tim Burton film Ed Wood. Johnny Depp played Ed Wood and Martin Landau won an Academy Award for his portrayal of Bela Lugosi. Yes, 16 years after his death, they made a movie about his terrible movies, and that movie won awards.
It's safe to say that in the course of making some of the worst movies possible, Ed Wood has brought more joy to more people than 99 percent of the artists who've ever lived. If that doesn't inspire you, then you're dead inside. Someone get us a video camera and some hubcaps, pronto! We've got work to do!
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For celebrities that were just as lucky as these jerks, check out 7 Celebrity Careers That Launched by Accident. Or find out about how your favorite star is really a terrible person, in 7 Beloved Celebrities And The Awful Shit You Forgot They Did.
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