Thanks, Fellow Teamsters!

What a thrill to open up the current Newsreel of Teamsters Local 399 and see the article about  IT TAKES MORE THAN A DONUT TO MAKE A MOVIE a book which celebrates EVERY Teamster, and the hardworking men and women of Local 399.

Many Thanks to Amy Groton, and the great 399 Team, including Pres. Wes Ponsford, Steve Dayan, Ed Duffy and many others who helped make this possible! In the Newsreel there are many other stories & news items about the cool people in this part of the movie business, with Ice-Road Truckers, news about the next Fast & Furious (fun stories in the book about making the first couple of those) our new mobile app and much more.


If you’re interested, check out the article here, and fellow movie crew, shoot me your movie stories:, it’s been one of the joys of writing the book to hear colleagues stories of the wild, weird and wacky while on the set

#morethanadonut, @local399, #davidmarder


David Marder on writing: It Takes More Than A Donut

Q: What made you want to write the book?

A: Each time I returned home from a film shoot in some exotic and far off location, my dance card would fill up with a smorgasbord of lunches, Bar-B-Qs, and dinners. Family and friends were mesmerized by my “movie war stories.” I was the entertainment, the floor show. Everyone wanted to be part of Hollywood—hear about the unbelievably outrageous highlights and lowlights of film-making. Their reaction to these stories was always the same, “Unbelievable! You should write a book!” It’s taken me 40 years to heed their advice, but here it is.

Salty Donut

We find as much creativity in donuts these days as there is in movies.

Picture a warm cinnamon roll wrapped in soft and fluffy brioche dough drowned in a roasted-pecan-toffee-rum glaze, and topped with a few caramelized pecans. ACTION!!!

If you don’t have a sticky bun donut from Salty Donut in Miami, you can still enjoy reading IT TAKES MORE THAN A DONUT TO MAKE A MOVIE. It’s both delicious (and calorie free).

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Thanks for the review!

Fun book. Easy read. Highly recommend!

— This book is straight up, the real deal about Hollywood from an insider who’s not afraid to tell it like it is. It’s funny and witty and has some really great stories that range from the 60’s all way to now. Anyone who’s ever worked in the industry in any capacity can totally relate to David’s experiences and if you’ve never worked in the film industry it will be a fantastic and hilarious eye-opener!

donuts column

Frank Darabont is a Movie Producer/Director who knows his cars…

We had a couple of scenes to film on Saint Croix:

…the Andy-Red reunion and Tim driving a new convertible down the highway, wind blowing in his hair, with the ocean as a background. There are not a lot of 27-year-old, new-looking convertibles on Saint Croix, none to be exact. My search led me to the island of Saint Thomas, about a half-hour flight from St. Croix. A fireman on Saint Thomas owned a bright red, 1965 Ford Mustang convertible that looked like it just had rolled off the showroom floor. It was perfect. After a little back and forth of island bartering, we agreed on a rental deal.

I hired the captain of an old, World War II Navy landing craft to pick-up a couple of motorhomes in Puerto Rico, then sail to St. Thomas, load our grip and camera gear and the Mustang, and deliver the cargo to Saint Croix.

The next morning, my phone rang; it was the captain. “There’s a problem. The Mustang owner changed his mind; he won’t release the car.” I called the fireman and offered more money, my first-born, a foot massage, a couple of tickets to the Universal Studios tour. Nothing worked. Bye-bye Mustang. I instructed the captain, “Set sail without the car. I need the rest of the cargo.”

Not having the car was a big, big problem. I was weighing my options, which were none, when a random, unrelated event flashed before my eyes. A bright red 1968 Pontiac GTO convertible flew past me on the highway. I jumped in my car and followed.


The owners of my red-headed salvation were a middle-aged couple from the States who had moved to Saint Croix to get away from it all, which might be code for the witness protection program. (I’m just saying?) The GTO was her “baby,” a family heirloom they shipped down from the States. I needed that car; I wasn’t going to take “no” for an answer. I promised them Hollywood, Tim Robbins, Morgan Freeman, and all the free food they could eat. I had her at Tim Robbins, her husband—at free food.

Frank Darabont is a car nut; he knows his way around automobiles. “That’s a 68′ Pontiac GTO,” mused Frank. “This scene takes place in 1967; the car is one year too new.”

I pointed out that according to the script the scene takes place in October of 1967. “Back in the seventies, all the car companies introduced their new models in September. Theoretically,” I said, “Andy could be driving that car.” I don’t know if Frank was buying it, but he didn’t have much of a choice.

In the end, it all worked out. I got the car; the company got their shot. Mrs. GTO got to flirt with Tim Robbins, and Mr. GTO ate the last frigging donut, a fitting end to a film about hope and redemption.


– Get your copy today! Makes a great gift!

From Rocker to Hollywood Teamster

In the early sixties, I was a tall, lanky twenty-two-year old guitar player and lead singer in a rock and roll band. The group worked the local clubs in and around Southern California, cut a few demo records, and like a thousand other bands, chased the dream. I thought the group was on its way to stardom when a talent agent signed us to a contract. The ink was barely dry before we found ourselves being shipped out of town on tour. We packed four band members, a couple of girlfriends, a mangy mutt, and our band equipment into a pair of station wagons and hit the road, playing a string of one-nighters.

Holiday Inns, bowling alley lounges, Air Force Officer’s clubs, and American Legion Posts. It was an exhausting pace. At one stretch, we played 15 one-nighters in a row, traveling a couple of hundred miles between gigs. It didn’t leave a lot of time for sleep, but we were young, and it was an adventure.

When other band members split, I found my friend Gene to fill in on a gig. The next night, Gene found himself on stage, a room full of smiling young Republican faces looking back at him. I was on electric guitar, Jerry on drums, and our fourth guy, Enzo Piazza, on electric bass. I announced to the alcohol-soaked crowd the next song we were going to play: “Louie Louie.” A buzz zipped through the room; the future GOP’ers sure loved that song, but Gene looked like a man searching for a hole to jump into and hide. “I’ve never heard of that song; I have no idea how to play it.”

“Don’t worry,” I assured him, trying to calm him down. “I’ll crank up my amp volume, drown you out. Just jump around, and look like you’re having fun.”

That was the first day of a 48-year friendship between Gene Schwartz and me. Gene is eighty-seven years old, lives in Palm Springs, California, and is still my best friend.

In 1972, Gene landed a job as a Teamster at Universal Studios. He’s a smart guy, and in a short time, Gene worked his way up to become a dispatcher at the studio’s Transportation Department office. One evening in October of 1973, Gene called. “I can get you one day of work as a Teamster at Universal Studios.”

My one day turned into two days, and then the two days turned into a 40-year career._In the band.jpg