PERSONAL: Born in Brooklyn, NY. Education: University of Southern California, graduated from School of Cinema-Television.
ADDRESSES: Agent—Don Buchwald & Associates, 6500 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 2200, Los Angeles, CA 90048; fax: 323-655-7470.
CAREER: Cofounder of ZM Productions. Executive producer of films, including H-E Double Hockey Sticks, 1999. Producer of films, including 2010: The Odyssey Continues, 1984; (with Les Mayfield) Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse, Triton, 1991; Encino Man, Buena Vista, 1992; and Wildfire 7, 2004. Executive producer and producer of videos, including Under Pressure: Making The Abyss, 1993; The Making of Jurassic Park, 1995; Saturday Morning Cartoons' Greatest Hits, 1995; and William Shatner's Star Trek Memories, 1995. Executive producer of television movies and programs, including (as co-executive producer) "What'z up?" (series), 1994; The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes, American Broadcasting Companies (ABC), 1995; Freaky Friday, ABC, 1995; Escape to Witch Mountain, ABC, 1995; The Barefoot Executive, ABC, 1995; (as co-executive producer) Encino Woman, ABC, 1996; The Cape, 1996; Tower of Terror, ABC, 1997; The Love Bug, ABC, 1997; Images of Life, 1998; Beverly Hills Family Robinson, Disney Channel/ABC, 1998; Frank Capra, an American Legend, 1998; The Making of Terminator 2: 3-D, 2000; The Sports Pages, Showtime, 2001; and Buried Alive, 2002. Producer of television movies and programs, including The Secrets of the Back to the Future Trilogy, 1990; (with Mayfield) Psycho IV: The Beginning, National Broadcasting Company (NBC), 1990; All in the Family: 20th Anniversary Special, 1991; and The Shaggy Dog, 1994. Director of The Whole Shebang, 2001. Assistant editor of The Magnificent Major, Viacom, 1977. Played a janitor in Psycho IV: The Beginning, NBC, 1990. Contributor to sound production for The Making of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, 1984, and Indiana Jones: Making the Trilogy, 2003.
(With Shawn Schepps) Encino Man, Buena Vista, 1992.
(With Z.A. K.) Dogmatic, Spectacor, 1999.
(With Jeff Rothberg) The Whole Shebang, 2K Media, 2001.
Also author of series pilots and episodes for The Cape, 1996; and episode for The Sports Pages, Showtime, 2001.
SIDELIGHTS: George Zaloom has a long list of credits as a producer for both films and television programs, as well as for his writing and occasional acting parts. With Les Mayfield, he founded ZM Productions, which has produced such films as Psycho IV: The Beginning, in which Zaloom also played the part of the janitor. Written by Joseph Stefano, who wrote the original screenplay, and starring Anthony Perkins, who reprises his role as Norman Bates, the film examines the childhood (the young Norman is played by Henry Thomas) and horrors of the man who, in the original Psycho directed by Alfred Hitchcock, famously slashed actress Janet Leigh in the shower. Olivia Hussey plays the mother who psychosexually torments her young son in this television film. Rick Kogan, reviewing the film in the Chicago Tribune, noted that this follow-up "is less a horror film—fewer knives and chills—than it is a rather disturbing portrait of emotional terror."
Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse is documentary film produced by ZM Productions that examines the difficulties involved with making Francis Ford Coppola's epic film Apocalypse Now. The film was supposed to be shot in sixteen weeks, but it stretched out to thirty-four, and the budget nearly tripled. Actor Harvey Keitel was fired, and Martin Sheen, who replaced him, suffered a heart attack. Marlon Brandon came to the set overweight and difficult to work with. The movie, which portrays the Vietnam conflict, was shot in close proximity to battles then being fought in a very similar war in the Philippines, and some of the sets were destroyed by a monsoon. The film draws from nearly sixty hours of footage shot by Coppola's wife, Eleanor, during the making of the 1976 film; it also relies on interviews with the stars, who included Dennis Hopper, as well as the Coppolas, John Milius, and director George Lucas, who also worked on the film. Michael Wilmington wrote in the Los Angeles Times that the film is "an almost hypnotic document. All the interviewees are salty and unsparing, of themselves especially. Milius is bearish and hilarious; Eleanor idealistic, precise; Coppola nakedly open."
Zaloom also produced and cowrote the screenplay for Encino Man. The film stars Sean Astin as Dave and Pauly Shore as Stoney, two teens who discover Cro-Magnon Brendan Fraser frozen in a glacier. They defrost him and pass him off as Link, an exchange student, in their California high school, where the cave man tries to adapt to their culture. Of this comedy, Caryn James said in the New York Times that "Fraser plays Link as an endearing caveman, suggesting some of the guileless charm of Tom Hanks." Another comedy Zaloom directed is The Whole Shebang, starring Stanley Tucci as Giovanni, an Italian who has had a recent romantic breakup and accepts an offer by his cousin to come to New Jersey to help run his fireworks business.
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Chicago Tribune, November 9, 1990, Rick Kogan, review of Psycho IV: The Beginning, p. 1.
Los Angeles Times, January 24, 1992, Michael Wilmington, review of Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse, p. F1; April 2, 1995, Ed Dwyer, "The Tube Masters of Nostalgia," Magazine section, p. 18.
New York Times, May 22, 1992, Caryn James, review of Encino Man.
Pantagraph, June 6, 1992, Dan Craft, "Wit Extinct in 'Encino Man,'" p. B7.
Times-Picayune (New Orleans, LA), May 22, 1992, David Baron, "Neanderthal Happenings," p. L21.
Variety, September 3, 2001, Eddie Cockrell, review of The Whole Shebang, p. 41.
Washington Post, May 22, 1992, Desson Howe, review of Encino Man.
Internet Movie Database, http://imdb.com/ (June 16, 2005), career information on George Zaloom.
Writers Boot Camp, http://www.writersbootcamp.com/ (June 16, 2005), interview with George Zaloom.