The Life and Work of Dr. Thompson , "After Africa he just couldn't write. He couldn't piece it together". Plans for Thompson to cover the presidential campaign for Rolling Stone and later publish book fell through after Wenner canceled the project without informing Thompson. Thompson arrived in Saigon just as South Vietnam was collapsing and as other journalists were leaving the country.
Again, Wenner pulled the plug on the project. The incidents strained Thompson's relationship with Wenner and Rolling Stone. From the late s on, most of Thompson's literary appeared as of a four-volume series of books entitled The Gonzo Papers. Beginning with The Great Shark Hunt in and ending with Better Than Sex in , the series is largely a collection of rare newspaper and magazine pieces from the pre-gonzo period, along with almost all of his Rolling Stone pieces.
Starting in about , Thompson became more reclusive. He would often retreat to his compound in Woody Creek, rejecting projects assignments or failing to complete them. Despite a lack of new material, Wenner kept Thompson on the Rolling Stone masthead as chief of the "National Affairs Desk", a position he would hold until his death.
In Thompson divorced wife Sandra Conklin. The same year marked the release of Where the Buffalo Roam , a loose film adaptation based on Thompson's early s work, starring Bill Murray as the writer. Murray eventually became one of Thompson's trusted friends.
Extensively illustrated by Ralph Steadman , the piece first appeared in Running magazine in as "The Charge of the Weird Brigade" and was excerpted in Playboy. In , he covered the U. In Thompson accepted an advance to write about "couples pornography" for Playboy. The experience evolved into an as-yet-unpublished novel tentatively entitled The Night Manager. Thompson next accepted a role as weekly media columnist and critic for The San Francisco Examiner.
The position was arranged by former editor and fellow Examiner columnist Warren Hinckle. The next week it would be incisive political analysis of the highest order. Many of these columns were collected in Gonzo Papers, Vol. Songs of the Doomed: More Notes on the Death of the American Dream , a collection of autobiographical reminiscences, articles and previously unpublished material.
It was briefly excerpted in Rolling Stone in , and Thompson himself described in as " It's about the manager of a sex theater who's forced to leave and flee to the mountains. He falls in love and gets in even more trouble than he was in the sex theater in San Francisco ". Thompson continued to publish irregularly in Rolling Stone , ultimately contributing 17 pieces to the magazine between and Bill's Neighborhood" was a largely factual account of an interview with Bill Clinton at a Little Rock, Arkansas steakhouse.
Rather than traveling the campaign trail as he had done in previous presidential elections, Thompson monitored the proceedings on cable television; Better Than Sex: Confessions of a Political Junkie , his account of the presidential campaign, is composed of reactive faxes to Rolling Stone.
Fear and Loathing, Campaign ", a brief account of the presidential election in which he compared the outcome of the Bush v.
Gore court case to the Reichstag fire and formally endorsed Senator John Kerry , a longtime friend, for president. Thompson's work gained renewed attention with the release of the film Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. New editions of the book were published, introducing Thompson's work to a new generation of readers.
The same year, an early novel The Rum Diary was published, as were the two volumes of collected letters. Thompson's next, and penultimate, collection, Kingdom of Fear: Published in , it combined new material including reminiscences of the O'Farrell Theater , selected newspaper and digital clippings, and other older works. Thompson finished his journalism career in the same way it had begun: From until his death in , he wrote a weekly column for ESPN. His son Juan, daughter-in-law Jennifer, and grandson were visiting for the weekend.
His wife Anita, who was at the Aspen Club, was on the phone with him as he cocked the gun. Anita said she mistook the cocking of the gun for the sound of his typewriter keys and hung up as he fired.
Will and Jennifer were in the next room when they heard the gunshot, but mistook the sound for a book falling and did not check on Thompson immediately. Juan Thompson found his father's body. According to the police report and Anita's cell phone records,  he called the sheriff's department half an hour later, then walked outside and fired three shotgun blasts into the air to "mark the passing of his father". The police report stated that in Thompson's typewriter was a piece of paper with the date "Feb.
Thompson's inner circle told the press that he had been depressed and always found February a "gloomy" month, with football season over and the harsh Colorado winter weather. He was also upset over his advancing age and chronic medical problems, including a hip replacement; he would frequently mutter "This kid is getting old. That is 17 years past I am always bitchy. You are getting Greedy.
Act your old age. Thompson's collaborator and friend Ralph Steadman wrote:. He told me 25 years ago that he would feel real trapped if he didn't know that he could commit suicide at any moment.
I don't know if that is brave or stupid or what, but it was inevitable. I think that the truth of what rings through all his writing is that he meant what he said. If that is entertainment to you, well, that's OK. If you think that it enlightened you, well, that's even better.
He could never stand being bored. On August 20, , in a private funeral, Thompson's ashes were fired from a cannon. This was accompanied by red, white, blue and green fireworks—all to the tune of Norman Greenbaum 's " Spirit in the Sky " and Bob Dylan 's " Mr. The plans for the monument were initially drawn by Thompson and Steadman, and were shown as part of an Omnibus program on the BBC titled Fear and Loathing in Gonzovision Depp told the Associated Press , "All I'm doing is trying to make sure his last wish comes true.
I just want to send my pal out the way he wants to go out. Thompson is often credited as the creator of Gonzo journalism, a style of writing that blurs distinctions between fiction and nonfiction. His work and style are considered to be a major part of the New Journalism literary movement of the s and s, which attempted to break free from the purely objective style of mainstream reportage of the time. Thompson almost always wrote in the first person , while extensively using his own experiences and emotions to color "the story" he was trying to follow.
Despite his having personally described his work as "Gonzo", it fell to later observers to articulate what the term actually meant. While Thompson's approach clearly involved injecting himself as a participant in the events of the narrative, it also involved adding invented, metaphoric elements, thus creating, for the uninitiated reader, a seemingly confusing amalgam of facts and fiction notable for the deliberately blurred lines between one and the other.
Thompson, in a interview in Playboy addressed the issue himself, saying "Unlike Tom Wolfe or Gay Talese, I almost never try to reconstruct a story. They're both much better reporters than I am, but then, I don't think of myself as a reporter. The majority of Thompson's most popular and acclaimed work appeared within the pages of Rolling Stone magazine.
Along with Joe Eszterhas and David Felton, Thompson was instrumental in expanding the focus of the magazine past music criticism; indeed, Thompson was the only staff writer of the epoch never to contribute a music feature to the magazine. Nevertheless, his articles were always peppered with a wide array of pop music references ranging from Howlin' Wolf to Lou Reed.
Armed with early fax machines wherever he went, he became notorious for haphazardly sending sometimes illegible material to the magazine's San Francisco offices as an issue was about to go to press. Robert Love, Thompson's editor of 23 years at Rolling Stone , wrote that "the dividing line between fact and fancy rarely blurred, and we didn't always use italics or some other typographical device to indicate the lurch into the fabulous.
But if there were living, identifiable humans in a scene, we took certain steps Hunter was a close friend of many prominent Democrats, veterans of the ten or more presidential campaigns he covered, so when in doubt, we'd call the press secretary. Discerning the line between the fact and the fiction of Thompson's work presented a practical problem for editors and fact-checkers of his work.
Love called fact-checking Thompson's work "one of the sketchiest occupations ever created in the publishing world", and "for the first-timer You knew you had better learn enough about the subject at hand to know when the riff began and reality ended.
Hunter was a stickler for numbers, for details like gross weight and model numbers, for lyrics and caliber , and there was no faking it. Thompson often used a blend of fiction and fact when portraying himself in his writing as well, sometimes using the name Raoul Duke as an author surrogate whom he generally described as a callous, erratic, self-destructive journalist who constantly drank alcohol and took hallucinogenic drugs.
Fantasizing about causing bodily harm to others was also a characteristic in his work used to comedic effect and an example of his brand of humor. A number of critics have commented that as he grew older the line that distinguished Thompson from his literary self became increasingly blurred.
I'm leading a normal life and right alongside me there is this myth, and it is growing and mushrooming and getting more and more warped. When I get invited to, say, speak at universities, I'm not sure if they are inviting Duke or Thompson.
I'm not sure who to be. Thompson's writing style and eccentric persona gave him a cult following in both literary and drug circles, and his cult status expanded into broader areas after being portrayed three times in major motion pictures.
Hence, both his writing style and persona have been widely imitated, and his likeness has even become a popular costume choice for Halloween. Thompson was a firearms and explosives enthusiast in his writing and in life and owned a vast collection of handguns , rifles , shotguns , and various automatic and semi-automatic weapons, along with numerous forms of gaseous crowd control and many homemade devices.
He was a proponent of the right to bear arms and privacy rights. Part of his work with The Fourth Amendment Foundation centered around support of Lisl Auman, a Colorado woman who was sentenced for life in under felony murder charges for the death of police officer Bruce VanderJagt, despite contradictory statements and dubious evidence.
The Colorado Supreme Court eventually overturned Auman's sentence in March , shortly after Thompson's death, and Auman is now free. Auman's supporters claim Thompson's support and publicity resulted in the successful appeal. Thompson was also an ardent supporter of drug legalization and became known for his detailed accounts of his own drug use. He was an early supporter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws and served on the group's advisory board for over 30 years, until his death.
It might be a little rough on some people for a while, but I think it's the only way to deal with drugs. In a letter to his friend Paul Semonin, Thompson explained an affection for the Industrial Workers of the World , "I have in recent months come to have a certain feeling for Joe Hill and the Wobbly crowd who, if nothing else, had the right idea.
But not the right mechanics. I believe the IWW was probably the last human concept in American politics. Thompson is seen in several scenes wearing different Che Guevara T-shirts. Additionally, actor and friend Benicio del Toro has stated that Thompson kept a "big" picture of Che in his kitchen. After the September 11 attacks , Thompson voiced skepticism regarding the official story on who was responsible for the attacks.
He speculated to several interviewers that it may have been conducted by the U. Government or with the government's assistance , though readily admitting he had no way to prove his theory. In , Thompson wrote: Thompson wrote a number of books, publishing from to the end of his life. His best-known works include Hell's Angels: As a journalist over the course of decades, Thompson published numerous articles in various periodicals. He was also guest editor for a single edition of The Aspen Daily News.
Tales of Shame and Degradation in the '80s. The Essential Writings of Hunter S. The book was edited by the magazine's co-founder and publisher, Jann S.
Wenner, who also provided an introduction to the collection. Thompson wrote many letters, which were his primary means of personal communication. He made carbon copies of all his letters, usually typed, a habit begun in his teenage years. The Fear and Loathing Letters is a three-volume collection of selections from Thompson's correspondence, edited by the historian Douglas Brinkley. The first volume, The Proud Highway was published in , and contains letters from to Fear and Loathing in America was published in and contains letters dating from to A third volume, titled The Mutineer: As of January , it has yet to be sold to the public.
It contains a special introduction by Johnny Depp. Accompanying the eccentric and colorful writing of Hunter Thompson, illustrations by British artist Ralph Steadman offer visual representations of the Gonzo style. Steadman and Thompson developed a close friendship, and often traveled together. Though his illustrations occur in most of Thompson's books, they are conspicuously featured in full page color in Thompson's The Curse of Lono , set in Hawaii.
Thompson was an avid amateur photographer throughout his life and his photos have been exhibited since his death at art galleries in the United States and United Kingdom. Thompson's snapshots were a combination of the subjects he was covering, stylized self-portraits, and artistic still life photos. The London Observer called the photos "astonishingly good" and noted that "Thompson's pictures remind us, brilliantly in every sense, of very real people, real colours.
The film has achieved something of a cult following. The novel's premise was inspired by Thompson's own experiences in Puerto Rico. The film was written and directed by Bruce Robinson. There's a great comfort in it for me, because I get a great visit with my old friend who I miss dearly.
The Crazy Never Die. Wayne Ewing created three documentaries about Thompson. The film Breakfast with Hunter was directed and edited by Ewing. It documents Thompson's work on the movie Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas , his arrest for drunk driving , and his subsequent fight with the court system.
When I Die is a video chronicle of making Thompson's final farewell wishes a reality, and documents the send-off itself. Fear and Loathing in Denver chronicles Thompson's efforts in helping to free Lisl Auman, who was sentenced to life in prison without parole for the shooting of a police officer, a crime she didn't commit.
All three films are only available online. In Come on Down: Buy the Ticket, Take the Ride: The original documentary features interviews with Thompson's inner circle of family and friends, but the thrust of the film focuses on the manner in which his life often overlapped with numerous Hollywood celebrities who became his close friends, such as Johnny Depp, Benicio del Toro , Bill Murray , Sean Penn , John Cusack , Thompson's wife Anita, son Juan, former Senators George McGovern and Gary Hart , writers Tom Wolfe and William F.
The Gonzo Patriots of Hunter S. Thompson , produced, directed, photographed and edited by Blue Kraning, is a documentary about the scores of fans who volunteered their privately owned artillery to fire the ashes of the late author, Hunter S. Thompson held at the Denver Press Club. The film premiered on January 20, , at the Sundance Film Festival.
Gibney uses intimate, never-before-seen home videos, interviews with friends, enemies and lovers, and clips from films adapted from Thompson's material to document his turbulent life. Stein persuades London's 'Time Out' Magazine to put Thompson up for a fortnight, in exchange for him writing a cover story to publicize the play. Thompson doesn't write the story, but does rampage around London on Time Out's expense account. The play was revived for the Vault Fringe Festival in A Brutal Chrysalis is a one-man show about Thompson written by Paul Addis, who also played the author.
Set in the writing den of Thompson's Woody Creek home, the show portrays his life between and James Cartee began playing the role soon after Addis's arrest in , and again after Addis's death in From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For the musician, see Hunter G. Thompson left in with Oscar Zeta Acosta. The Battle of Aspen. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail ' Retrieved August 3, I complete my profile on the website, www.
I say I want a younger man who will enjoy, but not resent, my lifestyle. I attach a couple of glamorous photos: No sooner do I hit the send button than the responses start to pour in. Many are from young men in the U.
They all look as if they could be Britney Spears' chavvier brothers and that every meal they eat comes from a takeaway chicken bucket. I also receive a simply hilarious message from Giles, an Englishman based in Sydney, Australia, who wants me to fly him first class, of course to London and to put him up at the Dorchester.
In return, he will help me run my business and, he says, boost my turnover massively. Then there is Kevin, a toothless roofer from Pontefract, who writes: Not forgetting Ian from Newport who, at 54, is surely too old to qualify as a sugar baby. He writes to tell me that he is riddled with arthritis and walks with the aid of two sticks, but 'let me reassure you that my lack of mobility in no way affects my performance in the bedroom'.
Most of the British-based men who contact me are aged 25 to 35 and aren't attractive enough to be employed as a rich woman's arm candy. Anyone searching for the character Richard Gere portrayed in American Gigolo can forget it.
Claudia farewells one of the gold-digging toyboys she met through the website. She was amazed by their brazenness. We speak briefly on the phone and arrange to meet the next day.
Alex arrives ten minutes early at the Italian restaurant I've chosen, bringing with him a rather wilted rose. It is wrapped in brown paper, rather than cellophane, which makes me wonder whether he's just stolen it from someone's garden. He is wearing a black satin shirt, which seems a little inappropriate for our midday meeting, and reeks of cheap aftershave. He is also a culture vulture who adores the theatre, opera and ballet, if only he could afford it, he adds rather pointedly.
At this point, I wonder whether he thinks he's entering Miss World or trying to seduce a mature cash cow. He tells me I am the first woman he has met from Seeking Arrangement, but that he has had previous relationships with several other rich, older women, including a Japanese lady he claims to have met while working in Tokyo as a croupier.
Things fizzled out when her grown-up children took an intense dislike to him and told him to leave her alone. When I attempt to speak to him in French, he looks utterly horrified and declares that it is his rule to speak only English when he is in England. He is clearly an Eastern European who has convinced himself that a smooth-talking Parisian will have more luck with the very wealthy ladies. The spanner in the works is that he doesn't have the money needed to carry out this expertly thought-out and fail-safe scheme.
When I remark that it sounds rather risky, he assures me 'that's all exaggerated to stop people like me'. The whole tone of his business pitch has a 'don't you worry your pretty little head, just give me the money' feel about it.
No wonder the Japanese lady's children gave him his marching orders. After an hour, Alex has to get back to work, but he generously assures me he will give me first refusal on the chance to invest in his business.
It's unlikely I will ever be named businesswoman of the year, but even I can see that Alex's moneymaking venture is possibly one of the worst ideas I've ever heard. Later that day, I meet up with Nick, who is English and works as a theatrical set designer.
In his profile, he says he is fed up with younger girls because they are vacant, vain and too high maintenance. He is 36 and appears good looking in his photos, although they turn out to be ten years out of date.
He says this is his first time on any type of internet dating site, and the phrase 'sugar mummy' makes him feel uncomfortable. He thinks that an older, financially secure woman might not be as hard on his pocket as a young woman. I never hear from him again, not even a 'thanks for lunch', which makes me wonder if he just cruises the internet looking for a free meal.
On Seeking Arrangement, there are thousands of British men all looking to meet a sugar mummy. But the number of women is woefully lacking. There are only three of us: Neither of the others has posted a photograph, and since the 'new media mogul' can't spell 'entrepreneur' I wonder how deluded they are. Most of the men online have posted very poseurish photos of themselves. Nearly all are reclining on fur rugs or shirtless.
There are many examples of young women dating older men, such as Rolling Stones guitarist Ronnie Wood, 61, and his year-old girlfriend Ekaterina Ivanova. But there are fewer cases of young men with older women. Ricardo, the fawning Italian text pest, has opted for the reclining-on-a-rug-pose.
He is wearing a tight white T-shirt and has frosted blond highlights. He writes to me declaring that my beauty and honesty shine through and that even though we both live in London, he will meet me anywhere in the world. Unfortunately for him, I suggest we meet in a restaurant south of the Thames rather than the south of France.
He arrives 15 minutes late in a puff of Brylcreem, cologne and drama, declaring that he located me because: Ricardo tells me he is working in a call centre only because he is between rich women. He has no shame in admitting that he has spent the past five years being the plaything of wealthy women.
His last 'victim' was a New York-based head of a pharmaceutical company who paid for him to spend long weekends at her Fifth Avenue apartment, as well as taking him on holiday to Mauritius and Hawaii. She also, he reveals, kitted him out in his expensive designer wardrobe. Well, his coat is Calvin Klein How do I know? Because he insists on showing me the label. He constantly kisses my hand and attempts to remove nonexistent threads and hairs from my shoulder. Unlike the previous two gold-digging men I've met, Ricardo isn't subtle when it comes to the subject of my money.
Conveniently, Ricardo is more than happy to live at any one of those locations. In fact, so enthusiastic is he that he declares he will resign from his call-centre job immediately: He does think it's unwise that we live together, and thinks it's probably best if I just rent him an apartment 'in Chelsea or somewhere like that. You can call me and say "Ricardo come to me now," and I will be there in minutes.
I panic slightly when he insists that he should escort me back to my office to meet the 90 staff I claim to employ, but I manage to dissuade him by saying that I have to go straight to a meeting. Five minutes after bidding me goodbye with a series of theatrical double-cheeked kisses, I receive a text from him saying: The prospect of seaside luxury proved irresistible for Ricardo, who offered to quit his job immediately.
A few minutes later another appears, declaring: For the rest of the day, the texts come thick and fast: Well, he got that last one right. By now, interviewing for a prospective sugar baby is proving to be an exhausting business... Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Steadman and Thompson developed a close friendship, and often traveled. Thompson's output notably declined from the mids, as he struggled with the consequences of fame, and he complained that he could no longer merely report on events as he was too easily recognized. After Nixon's death inThompson described him in Rolling Stone as a man who "could shake your hand and stab you in the back at the same time" and said "his casket [should] have been launched into one of those open-sewage canals that empty into the ocean just south of Los Angeles. The New York Times. He could never stand being bored.