Naked Hollywood, Nicolas Kent’s entertaining six-part documentary on Hollywood’s power brokers concludes with an episode — or more accurately, half an episode — about movie producers. Kent first interviewed two producing teams: Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer, the arrogant, big-money- fast-cars-and-power-beards duo that turned out Top Gun; and Lynda Obst and Debra Hill, a smaller-scale pair whose film, The Fisher King, is due this fall. But Simpson and Bruckheimer, after hearing that they came off as windy pontificators, persuaded their former studio, Paramount, to deny permission for footage from their movies to be shown. With the Simpson-Bruckheimer scenes excised, it’s less interesting — a study in contrasts with one side missing.
What emerges instead is merely a segment on the making of The Fisher King. Still, it’s incisive, especially when the show talks about dollars and cents: $23.5 million for the film, almost half of which went to pay the stars (Jeff Bridges and Robin Williams) and other creative talent; $3,000 for a car and driver for Williams; and — what’s this? — $2,000 for a Versace suit to be worn in just one scene? ”Creatively, that’s not necessary,” snaps Obst during an on-camera budget meeting. (She pencils in black jeans instead.) Naked Hollywood‘s finale needs Simpson and Bruckheimer’s high-rolling flamboyance, but it’s fitting that this show’s sharpest lesson in power-wielding took place off camera. B-