Sam Shepard's Henry Moss Subject of New Film

By Robert Simonson
05 Jan 2004

Sam Shepard
Sam Shepard

Sam Shepard's play The Late Henry Moss, which received a splashy world premiere at San Francisco's Magic Theatre in late 2000, is the subject of a new documentary by Michael Almereyda, titled "This So-Called Disaster."

The film will play Manhattan's Film Forum April 21-May 4.

The Magic production features a cast chock full of Hollywood names, including Nick Nolte, Woody Harrelson, Cheech Marin and Sean Penn. The run quickly sold out. The Almereyda film includes interviews with Shepard, Nolte and Penn, talking about what attracted them to acting.

Set in the Shepardian version of the American West, Henry Moss pits two brothers, Earl and Ray (Nolte and Penn), against the memory of their father Henry (James Gammon), whose family secrets and death are revealed in mysterious ways. Spicing up the comic mix are Marin's neighbor, whose spends his time making the Mexican tripe and chili soup, Menudo; Harrelson's talkative cab driver; and a rhumba-dancing girlfriend.

Almereyda directed the recent film version of Hamlet, which starred Ethan Hawke, Liev Schreiber, Bill Murray, Roger Rees and Julia Stiles.