He’s Tarantino’s hero: who is Roger Corman who received a standing ovation at Cannes?

Present to present the Grand Prix at the 76th Cannes Film Festival, Quentin Tarantino introduced, on stage, a giant of American cinema, Roger Corman. Who is he exactly?


I never understood the concept of guilty pleasure. Pleasure is pleasure!” It is with these words that director Quentin Tarantino, who came to present the Grand Prix at the 76th Cannes Film Festival, introduced one of his “hero”: Roger Corman. Aged 97, this director, screenwriter and actor is one of the biggest giants of American cinema.

Mainly known for his numerous horror films and his multiple collaborations with Vincent Price, he is also one of the most prolific producers in history. He would have, in total, produced nearly 500 films and many of the emblematic directors of our time – Martin Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola and Joe Dante, to name a few – have been spotted by him.

Quentin Tarantino’s introduction:

Among his most famous films, there is The Raven, The Fall of the House of Usher, but especially The Little Shop of Horrors which offers Jack Nicholson one of his first roles. As an actor, Roger Corman made a few small wink appearances, as in The Silence of the Lambs, but also Scream 3.

While the posters of his films paraded behind the members of the jury, Roger Corman was greeted by a very long standing ovation in the Palais des Festivals. Without a doubt, one of the greatest moments of this 76th edition.

Roger Corman’s speech:

Wow, Cannes! Finally ! What a joy to share this scene with Quentin [Tarantino]. My cinema knows no inhibitions, it is full of excess, of laughter and I have the impression that Cannes is too. It is the most interesting film festival in the world and you are all lucky to be part of it. THANKS.

Check out his detailed biography:

After studying engineering, Roger Corman joined the 20th Century in 1948 and gradually rose through the ranks of the Hollywood major.

In the mid-1950s, he began a very prolific artistic career which saw him alternate between the roles of producer, distributor, screenwriter and actor. At the same time, he asserts himself as the discoverer of many talents such as Martin Scorsese, Brian De Palma, Robert De Niro or Ron Howard.

It was by founding the company American International Pictures (AIP) in the company of Samuel Z. Arkoff and James H. Nicholson that Roger Corman achieved success.

All genres are approached by the American, but he reveals himself from 1960 with the production of horror films: The Little Shop of Horrors then eight films adapted from works by Edgar Allan Poe such as The Fall of the Usher House, The Torture Chamber and The Empire of Terror.

Behind the camera, Roger Corman only distinguished himself for about fifteen years. He made his debut in 1955 with the western Five Guns in the West, and would not stop until 1990, after the release of The Resurrection of Frankenstein, with John Hurt and Bridget Fonda.

He then focused on his acting career. We see him in big productions like The Silence of the Lambs, Philadelphia, Apollo 13 or Scream 3. Francis Ford Coppola had also offered him a role as a senator in 1972 in The Godfather, 2nd part.

As a producer, whether directly or indirectly involved, Roger Corman can be linked to more than 400 films, an impressive number explained by the fact that AIP distributed one film per month or even more for years. There are thus 18 feature films for the year 1957 alone.

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