Hansen, Matthew Scott 1953-
HANSEN, Matthew Scott 1953-
Born 1953; married; wife's name Stephanie.
Home—Southern CA. Agent—c/o Author Mail, Virtualbookworm.com Publishing, Inc., P.O. Box 9949, College Station, TX 77842.
(With Bob Zmuda) Andy Kaufman Revealed! Best Friend Tells All, backword by Jim Carrey, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1999.
(With Lynn Brewer) House of Cards: Confessions of an Enron Executive, Zuna3 Press, Virtualbookworm.com (College Station, TX), 2002.
(With Bob Eubanks) That Would Be in the Book, Bob, Benbella Books (Dallas, TX), in press.
WORK IN PROGRESS:
Hominid, a novel.
Matthew Scott Hansen is the coauthor of two books on subjects that received much play in the media. Andy Kaufman Revealed! Best Friend Tells All, written with Bob Zmuda, is the story of comedian Andy Kaufman, who died in 1984. House of Cards: Confessions of an Enron Executive was written with former Enron executive Lynn Brewer, who witnessed firsthand the corruption within the giant energy corporation.
Andy Kaufman is considered by many to have been a brilliant comedian. He was also a "shock artist" who drove his audience to the point where they were not sure whether or not the comic was joking. Even his death at age thirty-five from lung cancer was considered by some to be just a huge joke at first. Bob Zmuda was Kaufman's best friend. With Hansen, Zmuda describes Kaufman's rise from his early days as a stand-up comedian to his role on the television sitcom Taxi. Zmuda also comments on Kaufman's later work, which some felt bordered on "performance art." Critic Lance Gould wrote in the New York Times that although Andy Kaufman Revealed! does not substantially penetrate Kaufman's personality, it is "an often hilarious tribute … that does reveal many of this master trickster's secrets."
In dealing with the Enron controversy, House of Cards: Confessions of an Enron Executive ran into some controversy of its own. Coauthor Lynn Brewer was a high-ranking Enron executive. When the huge energy corporation went bankrupt due to criminal business practices, Brewer decided to offer information to government officials on the company's corruption. Surprisingly, the government had no interest in her assistance. So, with Hansen, she put her findings and her own story into a book, which HarperCollins accepted for publication, giving the authors a six-figure advance. However, once the book was submitted to the publisher's lawyers for review, HarperCollins declined to publish it. Hansen and Brewer then found a small publisher in Texas that was willing to release the book. In House of Cards the authors detail the massive fraud, cover-ups, conspiracies, and bullying of employees that went on in the inner workings of the company. A reviewer on the Press World Web site found the book "a riveting, shocking, richly detailed, and often hilarious look at the company that has become the gold standard for ethical misconduct and blinding greed."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, September 15, 1999, Mike Tribby, review of Andy Kaufman Revealed! Best Friend Tells All, p. 214.
New York Times, September 26, 1999, Lance Gould, review of Andy Kaufman Revealed!, section 7, p. 21.
Plain Dealer (Cleveland, OH), October 3, 1999, review of Andy Kaufman Revealed!, p. I1.
Publishers Weekly, August 16, 1999, review of Andy Kaufman Revealed!, p. 69.
Washington Post, September 19, 1999, review of Andy Kaufman Revealed!, p. X11.
Press World,http://economy.press-world.com/ (October 7, 2002), review of House of Cards: Confessions of an Enron Executive.