Susan Strasberg is an actress and the daughter of Lee Strasberg the director of The Actor's Studio who trained such actors as Paul Newman, Marlon Brando, James Dean, and Marilyn Monroe in what came to be known as "method acting." Susan Strasberg made her acting debut at 17 as Anne Frank in a Broadway production of "The Diary of Anne Frank." Strasberg has recently written her memoirs, "Bittersweet," which discuss growing up in her eccentric family, her love affairs with figures such as Richard Burton and Warren Beatty, and her daughter, who was born with a
Ellen Willis is a writer for the the New Yorker. Her collection of essays, "Beginning to See the Light: Pieces of a Decade," covers many of the social and political issues of the last ten years. Feminism, rock music, 60s counter-culture and the backlash against it, the changing definitions of "family" amongst the left, religion, and abortion are covered. She also discovers her reconsidering of Judaism and God in general, after a her brother became Orthodox. She joins the show to discuss the book and its subjects.
Humorist, writer, and storyteller Garrison Keillor is the host of the radio show "A Prairie Home Companion," which is inspired by the Grand Ol' Opry and takes place in the fictional place of Lake Woebegone, Minnesota. His latest book is "Lake Woebegone Days."
Evangelical minister Jerry Falwell has cultivated a network of political, educational, and media ventures to promote his conservative beliefs in culture and politics. He tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross about how he came to be a Christian, and how he hopes to guide others to the faith.
Screenwriter Shawn Slovo. Her first film, "A World Apart," is the autobiographical story of the relationship between a white woman, committed to fighting apartheid, and her 13-year-old daughter, who is struggling to cope with the political choices her mother has made. Slovo's parents were early members of the outlawed African National Congress; Her mother reported on the injustices of apartheid for alternative newspapers, while her father defended blacks in the court system. Slovo's mother was murdered in exile by a parcel bomb.
Standup comic Richard Lewis. In his act, Lewis portrays a spastic, tortured, self-deprecating man living a life of unrelieved pain. He says of his comedy that after he's finished his act "people throw prescription drugs and the names of their therapists instead of roses. I'm the wreck they can't be." Lewis has appeared roughly 35 times on the "Late Night with David Letterman" show. His new HBO comedy special, "Richard Lewis: I'm Exhausted Concert," premieres on June 18th.
The sequel to the lackluster Winds of War is well worth the time, says TV critic David Bianculli. The miniseries about World War II already has a third installment in the works, which is slated to air next year.
Critic Stuart Klawans reviews the new Mike Leigh film, about working class people and their gentrifying London neighborhood. It's the director's first movie since the 1970s; Klawans says it was worth the wait.
The prolific and award-winning author is uncomfortable with fame, and has kept a low public profile. Now he opens up in a new collection of autobiographical essays. Updike uses his own body as a jumping-off point for his ruminations.