January 6, 2005


Oliver Stone Apologizes to Turkey: And Billy Hayes, author of Midnight Express, reacts (Paul Krassner, 1/07/05, LA Weekly)

Midnight Express was adapted from the book by Billy Hayes, an American who was sentenced to 30 years in prison for attempting to smuggle hashish out of Turkey, and eventually escaped. Stone also did a week’s worth of interviews with Hayes in a hotel room after he’d read the book.

"That was fun," Hayes recalled, "like being in a washing machine on tilt. And while some people find him a bit much, I love Oliver’s energy."

I contacted Hayes to get his reaction to Stone’s recent statement. "How," I asked him, "was the script overdramatized?"

"My biggest problem with the screenplay and the film was that you didn’t see a single good Turk," said Hayes...

Are Mr. Stone and Mr. Hayes the last ones to realize that the Turks were the heroes not the drug dealer?

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 6, 2005 6:18 PM

I'll never forget when I was in junior high school and was sick one week. I watched the 'Bill Boggs Show,' a brain-dead local talk show hosted by some nitwitted Anglo-Celtic pretty boy with an IQ smaller than that of a blender but who was pathologically liberal. He brought on Billy Hayes and the Turkish consul in NY. He let the drug addict whine endlessly about his treatment and wouldn't let the diplomat, who was obviously a pretty worldly guy, get a word in edgewise. Whatever impact 'Midnight Express' had on the West, it made me pro-Turk.

Posted by: Bart at January 6, 2005 10:04 PM
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