Summer of Sam co-writer Michael Imperioli says he met with a witch in the Chelsea Hotel and used otherworldly means to get movie made
Michael Imperioli may be best known for playing Christopher Moltisanti on the TV series The Sopranos, but he has over 100 other screen acting credits and several writing credits (including multiple episodes of The Sopranos). His first writing credit came on 1999 crime drama Summer of Sam (watch it HERE), which was directed by Spike Lee… and during an interview for the documentary Ghosts of the Chelsea Hotel (and Other Rock & Roll Stories), Imperioli revealed that he visited a witch and used otherworldly means in an effort to get Summer of Sam into production!
Scripted by Imperioli, Lee, and Victor Colicchio, Summer of Sam has the following synopsis: During the summer of 1977, a killer known as the Son of Sam keeps all of New York City on edge with a series of brutal murders. The philandering Vinny unwittingly almost becomes a victim of the psychopath, and soon he and numerous people in his orbit — including his wife, Dionna, his punk-rocker friend, Ritchie, and aspiring porn star Ruby — are trying to figure out the identity of the killer, before it’s too late.
The film stars John Leguizamo, Adrien Brody, Mira Sorvino, Jennifer Esposito, Michael Rispoli, Saverio Guerra, Brian Tarantina, Al Palagonia, Ken Garito, Bebe Neuwirth, Patti LuPone, Mike Starr, Anthony LaPaglia, and Imperioli.
In Ghosts of the Chelsea Hotel (and Other Rock & Roll Stories), Imperioli says (with thanks to Variety for sharing the information), “I had just begun writing Summer of Sam with Victor Colicchio — we wrote that script together. I really wanted to get it made. So I met somebody who was living (in the Chelsea Hotel) who was a witch, who said she could help me get it made, but it wasn’t going to happen the way I thought it would. I was very ambitious at the time and wanted to get that made, so [I] resorted to tapping into otherworldly means to get it through the studio system.“
Imperioli didn’t just meet with a witch at the Chelsea Hotel. He also saw a ghost! He said, “I saw a ghost here. Some people may think that I’m insane and it’s bullshit or whatever. But I’m not the only person who has seen this apparition of a woman, apparently from the late 19th century, whose soon-to-be husband died on the Titanic. She came from upstate or something and was waiting for him here, and when she found out what happened to him, she killed herself.“
Directed by Danny Garcia, Ghosts of the Chelsea Hotel (and Other Rock & Roll Stories) tells the story of New York’s iconic Chelsea Hotel, and the eccentric artists and spirits that have inhabited it, including Andy Warhol, Patti Smith and Nico. The film explores the hotel’s connection to cultural icons including Dylan Thomas, Jack Kerouac, Arthur Miller and Mark Twain, and features interviews with Imperioli, Colicchio, Sherill Tippins, Ned Van Zandt, Harley Flanagan, Richard Barone, and more.
Ghosts of the Chelsea Hotel (and Other Rock & Roll Stories) will be screening at Joe’s Pub in New York City on September 5th and 11th. There will be other screenings across the United States and in Germany throughout September and October.
Are you a fan of Summer of Sam, and are you interested in Ghosts of the Chelsea Hotel (and Other Rock & Roll Stories)? What do you think of Imperioli’s stories of witches and ghosts in the Chelsea Hotel? Let us know by leaving a comment below.