The Andy Warhol Diaries (2022) s01e01 Episode Script

Smoke Signals

1 [Hugh Downs.]
Who is the best known and most controversial artist in America today? I'll give some hints.
Andy Warhol, that's who.
Andy Warhol I don't know who's I don't wanna go to school tomorrow [DJ music mix playing.]
Andy Warhol.
Silver Car Crash.
40 million dollars.
Sold! [Tik Tok person.]
We'll be talking about the Piss Paintings by Andy Warhol.
[Kanye West.]
I'm telling you.
I am Warhol.
I am the number one most impactful artist of our generation.
[faint operatic music playing.]
[Glenn Ligon.]
I went on a high school trip when I was 16, to SoHo.
And that was the first time I had seen Warhols in person.
And I don't think I knew what that work was about, but somehow, I knew it was important.
It seemed fun, in a way.
It was glamorous too.
[operatic music continues.]
I didn't even know I wanted to be an artist then.
There weren't artists in my family, and it didn't make sense as a profession.
Seeing Warhol somehow triggered some desire.
So even in my 16 year-old brain, I knew I was seeing something that was hugely powerful.
A kind of way forward.
[camera whirring.]
[Jamie Wyeth.]
All of a sudden, here was this man with this mask-like face and this wig.
Andy Warhol, your impressions of what took place earlier on here? Oh, I'm speechless.
It's just so exciting, I don't know what to say.
He put this thing out there, so he could feverishly work behind this whole mask.
A lot of people say it was an accident.
I don't believe a word of it.
It was a grand design of his.
I think he knew exactly what he was doing.
[faint futuristic music playing.]
[Debbie Harry.]
Andy was like really great actors.
They don't cry, or they don't act vulnerable.
But yet somehow you feel that they are.
And I definitely felt that from him.
[Glenn Ligon.]
Warhol felt the need to transform oneself into an image he created.
He was a master of that.
Reflecting who you are, you know.
Reflecting back something to the society.
He has perpetuated this myth.
The myth of Andy Warhol.
[soft harp strumming.]
This is a very important thing about all of your work.
There's a distance.
Your own distance, that you keep from it.
You have never really said anything that tells anyone anything about you.
You don't want that to happen, do you? Um, well, there is not very much to say about me.
[harp music continues.]
[sounds of paparazzi shouting and cameras clicking.]
[Hugh Downs.]
Although Andy Warhol's name is known around the world, few people have seen behind his public face.
Quiet and inarticulate, Andy is content to be an observer.
I look shy, and I am shy.
Warhol presents himself to the world as an event rather than a person.
[Leo Castelli.]
One has tried to analyze his character, his actions, and his art.
But I don't think that anybody has actually succeeded in saying the truth about Andy.
[harp music continues.]
[harp music intensifies.]
[female broadcaster.]
One of the hottest books out these days is a diary the late Andy Warhol kept for over a decade.
The diaries were edited by Pat Hackett, a freelance writer.
[Pat Hackett.]
I met Andy Warhol in 1968, right after he got shot.
[gun shot and reverberations.]
He'd stayed home in bed after he got out of the hospital.
And he taped all of his phone calls.
So that's what my job was in the beginning.
To transcribe his phone calls.
But in 1976, Andy and I started a routine of talking to each other on the phone to keep a diary.
It started to keep track of business expenses, but then kind of scandalous things and his feelings enter into it.
[interviewer 2.]
Did he actually call you every morning and say, "My gosh, Pat, last night I was here or there," and tell you his doings? [Pat Hackett on TV.]
This was his way of collecting his life.
[Pat Hackett.]
Andy could've just tape-recorded himself, but he wanted an audience.
[dial tone.]
- [Andy.]
Hello? - Hello.
Oh hi.
I wasn't sure you'd be in.
[Pat Hackett.]
The diaries were different, because the diaries are Andy's thoughts in Andy's words.
No other part of his work shows this.
[camera whirring.]
[opening music: "Nature Boy" by Nat King Cole.]
There was a boy A very strange enchanted boy They say he wandered very far Very far Over land and sea A little shy And sad of eye But very wise Was he The greatest thing You'll ever learn Is just to love And be loved In return [futuristic music playing.]
[AI Andy Warhol.]
Wednesday, November 24th, 1976.
[piano music playing.]
Got up at 7 a.
in Vancouver, and cabbed to the airport.
Cab, 15 dollars, plus five dollars tip.
Magazines, five dollars.
[airplane humming.]
This is the end of the trip for the opening at the Seattle Art Museum.
Catherine Guinness started this annoying thing, asking me over and over, "What is pop art?" [interviewer 3.]
Do you think that pop art has reached the point where it's becoming repetitious now? Ah, yes.
[interviewer 4.]
Andy, what is your definition of pop? I'm gonna give you a funny I always think it's just being a dad.
[interviewer laughs.]
- They call me "Pops" around here.
- [laughing.]
Hence "pop art".
[AI Andy.]
So, for two hours on the plane, she tortured me.
[piano music continues.]
Ate an early Thanksgiving dinner with Jed.
He'd gotten the car serviced for the drive down to Chadds Ford in the morning to visit Jamie Wyeth, the painter.
[piano music continues.]
Beautiful day.
Jed somehow drove straight to the Wyeths' door.
Just one phone call for directions.
Arrived around 4 p.
[door creaking open.]
[piano music continues.]
[camera clicks and whirs.]
We sat for hours and hours at dinner.
It was perfect.
Lots of drinks.
And dinner was everything creamy that I'm not supposed to eat because of my gallbladder.
But it was so good.
There was a romantic interest going on with Catherine Guinness and a neighbor of the Wyeths.
She talked about The Anvil S&M Bar and about shit and piss with him.
He seemed to like that and got interested.
Jed went to bed around 2 a.
But everyone else stayed up until around 4:00.
But I don't want to talk this morning.
I want to get over to Bloomingdale's before it's too crowded.
[Bloomingdale's ad.]
The smart money is investing now at the Northern Lights fur salon at Bloomingdale's.
Like no other store in the world.
[AI Andy.]
I got up early, and it looked beautiful outside.
[piano music playing.]
But I am in this period where I think, "What is it all about?" You do this, and you do that.
And what does it mean? Really, I'm in a strange period.
I've got these desperate feelings that nothing means anything.
[camera clicks and whirs.]
No one is more famous in the 20th century than Andy Warhol.
Really And yet, he explicitly told you, that in the future everybody would be famous for 15 minutes.
He was obsessed with famous people, with fame and with the different qualities and hierarchies within it.
He would have loved today because of the freak show that is contemporary culture.
[camera clicks and whirs.]
What I loved about Andy's art is that it wasn't just painting.
It was an expanded notion of what an artist could be.
What a cultural figure could be.
So, Andy was not just creating art.
He was creating contemporary culture.
[camera clicks and whirs.]
That word "underground movies", the public knows because of Andy Warhol.
But he went even beyond that.
The movie Kiss is just hundreds of people making out.
It's really erotic and really cool.
You had men doing it, which was unheard of at the time.
Chelsea Girls, no instructions.
The projectionist can turn the sound on either reel, whatever you think.
Couch, parts of it are obscene.
There is full sex in it, which was completely illegal.
You'd go to prison for that.
Blow Job is so brilliant, still.
Because it is a blow job, but you just see the guy's face.
That's one of the best movies ever.
He broke every rule of what a movie was supposed to be.
He made you look at things in a completely different way.
That's what art is, isn't it? As soon as he put that soup can up, it was over.
[camera clicks and whirs.]
Those suicide paintings, those car crash paintings, those race riot paintings.
That was the world.
You think about how relevant those things are.
And how he didn't get in the way.
He was big.
Andy is kind of like Walt Whitman, in that he could contain multitudes.
He's a performance.
You know, the wig, what he says.
That's a guise.
I think he evolved this performance over years.
But, you know, he said very little.
[interviewer 5.]
How much, do you think, of your success as an artist, probably the best known in the world, is a result of your own personal image? Yourself as a work of art? The master hides one's weakness.
The grandmaster uses his weakness.
He's a grandmaster, so he uses all his weaknesses.
Let's say he's got bad skin and quite bad hair, all that stuff.
And he uses it.
It had to feel dangerous, in some ways, to be Andy Warhol at that time, because the entire world was not ready for it.
There was a tremendous homophobic attitude especially in America.
[atmospheric music playing.]
I don't know if I'm turned on by any of Warhol's you know, male homosexually inclined movies.
I think he is a perfect product of American art.
One that I might not be too proud of.
[low chattering and murmuring.]
[museum woman.]
It's breathtaking, actually.
Because Andy Warhol is my favorite artist of all time.
He makes the simplest things look magical.
Like, a soup can can just blow your mind.
To see all of it in person just brings tears to your eyes, it's beautiful.
I'm sure he had lots of love in his life.
Love can be your best friend, can be a person you see on the street.
A lot of people are like, "Andy Warhol had boyfriends.
" I've seen a couple of pieces of art in here, but I know that he, you know, had boyfriends and stuff, and I think you kinda just have to look past that, you know.
[Lucy Sante.]
In so much of the country of the '60s you wouldn't even think of somebody as homosexual.
It was the worst insult.
Suddenly they had Andy Warhol.
He represented gayness.
He was the picture in the dictionary for a lot of Americans who didn't know.
Well, he was, and he wasn't.
You know, that's the paradox.
[interviewer 5.]
There's always been a rumor that you're asexual.
- Is it true? - Yes.
You don't like fucking and sucking, or what's the story? This idea of Andy Warhol as asexual was a widely held idea.
But it was widely held, 'cause he himself promoted it.
And he encouraged all of us to think that.
[interviewer 4.]
What do you think about sex, Andy? - [scoffs.]
I don't.
- [everyone laughs.]
[Bob Colacello.]
He deliberately lied to the press.
Again, I think, i-in creating this mystery around himself.
It's interesting to think about Andy's sexuality.
Because the way he presented himself was as being asexual.
You would hear rumors, but he publicly kept that aspect of his life out of the picture.
There is something about Warhol.
He is hiding so much.
But within the diaries there are moments, when the performance lapses.
You see it over and over again.
Clues that he did have these intimate relationships and did fall in love.
When I was first reading about all this, thinking, "Who is Jed Johnson to Warhol?" Then you think about the diaries and about Jon Gould.
It felt taboo to even talk about it at all.
And with Basquiat it's almost that same fixation.
No one wants to talk about Warhol having relationships that are important to his body of work, that he is using.
But I think that Warhol's biography is important for some of the reading of the work, because this idea of intimacy or queerness is always there, it's always in the work.
[Christopher Makos.]
No matter how this documentary turns out, you're gonna have ten different stories by ten different people.
It's sort of like the Kennedy assassination.
There's like ten different versions of that assassination from ten different people, the people that were on the lawn, that saw the car go by, people from, you know [director.]
The diaries represent Andy's point of view.
Everyone remembers things differently.
But can we have faith that the diaries are Andy's words and what he saw? Sure.
But it doesn't mean it's a bible.
Some people, after the diaries came out, would say, "Oh, that never happened.
" And anything is, uh, Rashomon.
The diary is what the person wants to say.
It's who he liked, who he couldn't stand.
So, of course it's subjective.
Two people, it's two different stories.
Four people, it's four different stories.
And what I say to those people is, [laughing.]
"Write your own diary.
Then you can tell your own story.
But this is what Andy saw.
" [camera clicks and whirs.]
[AI Andy.]
I went over to the dinner for the people who own Dior.
It was really heavy-duty.
[piano music playing.]
Happy Rockefeller was there.
Babe Paley and Carolina Herrera.
The ladies were all statuesque.
And it was old-fashioned kind of living.
If this style of living goes on, it will be incredible.
How can it last? The first course was crab meat and tomato aspic.
You don't see things like that anymore.
And then the chicken with fresh cranberries and chocolate mousse with hard crumbled cake and good wine.
All served so beautifully, and flower arrangements up to the ceiling.
[piano music continues.]
Bill Blass was there.
And Pat Buckley wearing Bill Blass.
Everybody looked so old.
But I guess I fit in.
But it's funny that they would think to invite me.
I'm looking very good now.
I could probably have any of these old bags.
[Glenn Ligon.]
By the time that Warhol is famous and doing his commissioned portraits, everyone knows he's gay, but he's, like, the "right" kind of gay.
He's not the "gay out in the streets" kind of gay.
He's not the "on the protest march" gay.
"Lobbying congress" gay.
He is kind of "nice artist" gay.
Acceptable, you know.
And so, in a way that kind of opened secret functions for him.
You know? Like, it works.
[siren wailing.]
[AI Andy.]
I'm so tired of elegant people.
I just wanted to be with some kids.
[dance music playing.]
Stevie wanted to go to the Village, to the clubs.
The first place we went to was The Cock Ring over on Christopher Street.
[dance music instensifies.]
The area has changed.
They got rid of the back rooms, and the bars are really crowded.
And Stevie gets bored right away everywhere and wants to leave.
Went to 12 West.
And I wouldn't dance.
So Stevie danced with a pillow.
["The Number One Song in Heaven" by Sparks.]
He kept getting poppers and putting them under my nose.
Bob Weiner said his whole clean, innocent image of me was blown.
That there I was on Quaaludes, taking poppers, and drinking.
I said, "Did you actually see me take a Quaalude?" Then I showed him the bits of the Quaaludes still in my pocket.
I informed him that I hadn't been inhaling when Stevie put the poppers under my nose.
Then he said, okay, but that I was drinking.
And I said, "I always drink.
" This is the number one song in heaven Written, of course By the mightiest hand Then we went to Anvil for a minute.
All of the angels Upstairs there was entertainment.
Part of the show was a boy taking off 50 pairs of jockey shorts.
They always follow the Master And his plan [electronic sounds beeping.]
Stevie said that he had to get up at 8 a.
because the restaurant meat man comes on Monday mornings, and he has to pick out the meat.
[calming music playing.]
We got into the car, and Stevie dropped me at home.
I kissed him in front of Bob Weiner, so that Bob would have something else to write about.
That was around 5 a.
[Lucy Sante.]
It could look, from the outside, like gay New York was a mechanical operation.
It was just people fucking and getting fucked.
It was all guys with beards and lumberjack shirts and leather pants, you know, and he didn't qualify within ten miles of that.
He was conscious of being unattractive.
That weighed heavily on him.
Going back to his childhood.
[light pensive music playing.]
[Jessica Beck.]
So, you have Warhol's passport photos from 1956.
So, here's one of his unaltered state.
And then we have another of this altered ideal, fully filling in his receding hairline, chiseling out the roundness of his nose.
Growing up he was often made fun of as Andy "Red-nosed" Warhola.
So there was always this attention on this bulbous nature of his nose or the uneven complexion that he had growing up.
So, that idea of shame is something that I think is very much part of Warhol's personal narrative.
And this idea of covering and transforming physically to sort of present to the world.
To almost shield himself from all of this criticism.
[art piece director.]
Okay, just a bit more back towards the window.
That's great.
Okay now.
First line: "I don't wanna talk about men wearing make-up.
" I don't wanna talk about men wearing make-up and perfume.
I don't wanna talk about New York fairies and hairdressers.
I have something more important to talk about.
I can't stand my pimples.
How was that for the camera? [Jessica Beck.]
And then that covering and concealing also has to do with his sexuality.
Warhol was never someone that could fully pass as straight.
The way that he carried his body being too swish, too feminine, too gay.
So, that idea of shame is deep rooted in Warhol's personal story from his youth.
[traffic sounds.]
[train sounds.]
[Patrick Moore.]
Pittsburgh is everything in terms of understanding Warhol.
It totally shaped him, formed him.
It was an incredibly gritty and grim city.
[camera clicks and whirs.]
At nine o'clock in the morning the streetlights were on and it looked like nine o'clock at night.
It was a little bit like the bowels of hell.
[dissonant chord sounds.]
And Andy emerged from this immigrant family into this city with nothing.
[AI Andy.]
When I was little, I never left Pennsylvania.
I used to have fantasies about things that I thought were happening in the Midwest, or down south, or Texas.
I felt I was missing out.
But you can only live in one place at a time, and your own life, while it's happening to you, never has any atmosphere, until it's a memory.
[Donna de Salvo.]
We're fascinated with where Warhol came from because he's a story that, I think, so many, especially young gay men, living in parts of the country, can identify with.
Should I start now? [director.]
You can start by saying who you are.
I'm John Warhola, brother of Andy Warhol.
And I'd like to tell you a few things about Andy.
[piano music.]
When my dad was 17 years old he came to America from a mountain village in Czechoslovakia.
That's where he met my mother, Julia.
[John Warhola.]
When Andy and I used to come home for lunch in grade school, I guess his favorite lunch was Campbell's tomato soup and a cheese sandwich.
We were living down in Soho, which was considered a very poor neighborhood.
We're on Orr Street in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
The neighborhood of West Oakland, and uh Andy Warhol was born here.
Do you live here as well? - Yeah, Joe and I are neighbors.
- Oh, great.
When Andy lived here he felt like he was targeted.
Do you think that that element has changed? Um, I think, at the time he was born and lived here, it was very conservative.
I think, if he came today, he'd be very pleased to know we've changed.
Meaning it was homophobic? Segregated.
Absolutely, not accepting of change.
- Very much so.
Would you not say that? - Oh yeah.
Big time.
In fact, we probably wouldn't have been friends.
[atmospheric instrumental music playing.]
[Father Thomas Schaefer.]
This is the Parish of St John Chrysostom, which is a Byzantine Catholic church.
It was the place where Andy was baptized.
[camera clicks and whirs.]
[Bob Colacello.]
Andy's mother was very religious.
She took him to Vespers Saturday night.
And three masses on Sunday.
And I can imagine that, you know, grim place.
He was transported.
[Father Thomas Schaefer.]
The Byzantine Catholic church is very much a church of mystery.
Everything has a meaning.
And so you'll see this whole concept of the importance of color when you look at the icons.
The way the head is tilted, the way the hands are formed.
It's a teaching device.
But if the person were an artist, I don't see how they could escape the impact of all that an icon offers to us.
[soft futuristic music.]
[Bob Colacello.]
All his really important images were icons.
Icons in the classical definition of objects of worship.
Marilyn, Liz, Jackie, Elvis.
These were American saints, secular saints.
And if you look at those icons, you really see a very strong relationship with Andy's art and this flat, two-dimensional quality.
I think all of that fed into Andy's aesthetic, his sensibility was so Catholic, but the thing that is rarely said about the church openly is it evolved into a rather homosexual institution.
[choir song.]
Growing up, Polish boys, Irish boys, Italian boys, who weren't gonna get married, became priests and monks, and their mothers could say they were priests and monks, not gay.
The old Latin mass with incense and the priests in robes and Christ naked on the cross Again, growing up Catholic, you never saw a naked male body, except Christ on the cross, and he also was bleeding.
So, the whole thing was, you know, confusing.
[Patrick Moore.]
Andy was this kind of kid who couldn't figure out how to be in the closet.
It was so apparent who he was, really from the very beginning, so, he must have had to have been very guarded to protect himself, and there is an effect, there is a damage, if you will, but certainly, a cautiousness, that gay men of that generation had to have to survive.
[AI Andy.]
When I think of my high school days, all I can remember are the long walks to school.
Past the babushkas and the overalls and the coal signs.
I wasn't very close to anyone, although I guess I wanted to be.
Because when I would see the kids telling one another their problems, I felt left out.
[John Warhola.]
I was almost four years older, and he was a little blond-haired kid that I would take by the hand to school.
I guess there was always a bully around, and I sort of had to protect Andy.
Because I figured he was the type that if, uh He was very quiet and shy.
[Bob Colacello.]
Andy's brother told me he was picked on by the local kids.
But one of the ways he won them over, starting at about the age of ten, according to his brothers, was that he would invite these kids into their house, uh, and draw them.
And if you've ever been drawn or painted by an artist, it's a very flattering process.
[soft piano music playing.]
It's almost erotic, and it does establish a bond.
An emotional kind of bond, in a way.
Because, to be really looked at and studied, is just it's a nice feeling.
[Patrick Moore.]
Warhol could see beauty all around him, but not very much in himself.
And, you know, for a gay guy, if you're not gonna be the stud, you might as well be the freak.
Drag queens have taught us this for a long time.
You're not gonna beat me up, because I'm gonna dress up.
I'm gonna create something.
I'm gonna create this image that's so powerful, that you can't get to me.
[Jessica Beck.]
That comes out when you start to think about the uniform with Warhol and the persona, and really transforming his physical appearance and image in order to enter into this very exclusive world.
[interviewer 6.]
So what are you making yourself up to be? What am I making myself up to be? Um Oh, just better looking.
["The Belldog" by Eno Moebius Roedelius.]
Most of the day We were at the machinery [Donna de Salvo.]
There was this dream: this desire to be someone else, to escape.
[John Warhola.]
He left for New York at the age of 20.
He had a 50 dollar bill, and the rest was history.
[Patrick Moore.]
There's this feeling of, "I have to prove myself.
" "I know there's this place called New York City.
" And that's where this little queen could say, "That's where I wanna be.
Not here in Pittsburgh.
" Out in the trees My reason deserting me [AI Andy.]
I came to New York in 1949.
[atmospheric music playing.]
I first lived on St.
Mark's place and Avenue A.
The Museum of Modern Art and art became really big.
I remember walking all the way home from the subway on Astor Place with my sketches.
And then dragging them up seven flights of stairs.
And I thought about how hard it was then.
[Jessica Beck.]
It really takes Warhol a full decade in New York to get any attention.
He started out as a graphic artist, as a commercial artist.
And Warhol ends up being very successful in that realm.
[Hugh Downs.]
He became a fashion illustrator, drawing shoes for Glamour, Vogue and Harper's Bazaar.
He was hard-working and dependable, and noticed for his originality and imagination.
[Jessica Beck.]
But he is always set on trying to be considered a serious artist.
[Hugh Downs.]
Determined to attract the attention of the serious art world, he experimented with painting dollar bills and newspaper headlines.
Even an electric chair.
But it was his Campbell's soup cans that caught on everywhere.
His studio was called the Factory.
Well named because Andy had a large staff of assistants.
[Jeffrey Deitch.]
Even though Andy had a fair amount of commercial success early on, and he became a celebrity in his way, he was not at all accepted by the art establishment.
Bob Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns thought he was too swish, that he wasn't passing effectively as a gay man in the art world.
So, Andy was a kind of outsider, and so, I think, part of the Factory is, Andy set up his own world of art, music, film, and the idea that you could create progressive culture.
It wasn't like anything else, before or after.
It was one of Andy's genius inventions.
[soft harp strumming.]
[Marc Balet.]
To me, the Factory represented all that was magical or mysterious or interesting or exciting in New York.
It was Ground Zero.
Andy was just the center of that.
[Bob Colacello.]
In the '60s, the people who gravitated to Warhol and the Factory were sort of very high-end.
They were disgruntled socialites, or almost street people, East Village people.
There was really a mix of debutants and straight people and gay people.
And everyone just got it.
[AI Andy.]
In 1968, a group of people worked for me on a fairly regular basis.
A lot of what you might call freelancers.
And a lot of superstars.
Or whatever you can call people who are very talented, but whose talents are almost impossible to market.
That was the staff of Andy Warhol Enterprises in those days.
[Bob Colacello.]
A lot of the socializing happened late at night in these wild parties.
Filming going on simultaneously.
There were a lot of drugs.
Those times people went crazy.
They were very promiscuous.
You'd hear about people overdosing or doing crazy things.
[Julian Schnabel.]
People thought he took drugs, they thought he was the devil, that he used people.
He gave people enough room to be what they wanted to be.
And in that there were some extraordinary things that were created.
[John Waters.]
With the films and just the social scene at the Factory, I think he okayed a behavior that had never been seen before.
If a pimply-faced boy from a very poor home in Pittsburgh can end up being the social dictator of New York society in some ways, it's hope for everybody.
But you have to take what society uses against you and exaggerate it and turn it into a style.
Andy kind of did that first too.
[Marc Balet.]
Looking back on those times in the late '60s in New York, we were sending out smoke signals to a certain people who could read those smoke signals, that they would come to New York seeking out the Factory and Andy.
They too had to be part of that family.
[soft organ music playing.]
[AI Andy.]
I wonder if it's possible to have a love affair that lasts forever.
If you are married for 30 years, and you are cooking breakfast for the one you love and he walks in, does your heart skip a beat? I don't know.
But it's nice to have a little breakfast made for you.
[Bob Colacello.]
Jed and his twin brother, Jay, came from Sacramento, California in 1968.
[dreamy electric guitar music playing.]
Without knowing anybody, we just sort of ended up with our bags in a Greyhound bus station here in New York.
I had heard of the East Village as a hippie place where you could maybe find a crash pad.
So, we headed down to the East Village.
[Bob Colacello.]
Jed one day delivers a telegram to the Factory at 33 Union Square West.
[suspenseful music playing.]
And Paul Morrissey says, "What's a good-looking kid like you doing delivering telegrams?" And he says, "Well, it's the only job I could find in New York.
" And Paul said, "Well, we'll pay you to sweep the floors and do odds and ends.
" So, Jed said, "Okay.
" [Jay Johnson.]
He said, "I got offered this job working with Andy Warhol at his Factory.
" And Jed really didn't know very much about Andy.
I mean, I think he'd heard of him, but he didn't really know.
[Bob Colacello.]
Jed is a very serious person.
A very diligent person.
Very intelligent.
He said very little.
And he said it in a voice so soft, that you sometimes had to ask him to please repeat what he just said.
- Okay.
Say it again.
- Man, those beautiful people.
[Bob Colacello.]
He just was someone that was so sweet and very hard-working.
[Jay Johnson.]
And he took it very seriously and did, you know, I think a really good job.
That probably was like eight months later.
Jed was at the Factory, when Andy was shot.
One day we had a friend who came up named Valerie Solanas.
She was kind of a slightly eccentric person.
- Thought I told you to shove off.
- Listen, Valerie.
[Fred Hughes.]
Andy started talking on the telephone, and suddenly there was like an explosion.
Said, "It's a bomb, hit the floor!" So everyone was on the floor.
And then I heard Andy say, "No, Valerie!" There were more shots.
I was at this point underneath my desk, and I looked over and I saw Andy screaming in pain, and there was already blood out, and she turned and she was right in front of me like that, with a gun right between my eyes, like that.
And I said, "Valerie, please don't shoot me.
You better get out of here right away.
Take the elevator and get out of here.
" And she said something like, "No, I have to.
" And then, luckily, the elevator made a noisy sound, like it was going by.
So, she kept the gun like that, and she walked back, pressed the button Then she was, like, really about to do it.
And the elevator door opened.
And she left.
All this time, Andy is writhing and yelling in pain.
[Jay Johnson.]
I was at home.
I had the radio on, and I heard this, and I ran over to the Factory.
I didn't know who had been shot, and I was really freaked out, thinking, you know, that Jed could have been shot also.
And Jed had gone to the hospital with Andy.
[ambulance sirens.]
[Bob Colacello.]
Jed actually was in the ambulance with him, cradling him.
[symphony music playing.]
He was technically dead when they started operating on him.
When they finished this operation that went on for five hours, involving five surgeons, operating on every vital organ, except the heart, essentially, they said, what's gonna happen when the anesthesia wears off, he'll probably go into shock and a coma, and that'll be it.
[machines whirring.]
Instead, when the anesthesia wore off, he came to.
[symphony music playing.]
[cameras snapping.]
The doctors told Jed and Paul that Andy, obviously, the moment those bullets hit him, willed that he was going to live.
And it was sort of a miracle.
[symphony music playing.]
[soft piano music playing.]
[Bob Colacello.]
When Andy got out of the hospital, the reality was that he was very fragile.
He just seemed like he needed help.
Paul Morrissey said to Jed, "He's gonna be in bed and recuperating for some time.
Why don't you move into Andy's house? You'll have your own room and everything.
And you could help take care of Andy.
" [Jay Johnson.]
He just said, "Andy wants me to come, because he needs a lot of help.
" And that was basically it.
He never came back, so [Bob Colacello.]
It became, I guess, the classic love story of the nurse and patient falling in love.
[soft piano music playing.]
[Jay Johnson.]
He never really told me what was going on with him and Andy.
It was just sort of understood.
But there was intimacy and affection? There was, definitely, yeah.
Definitely was.
And I really did think Andy was in love with Jed.
And it was mutual.
[Bob Colacello.]
Pat said Andy chose people very well in a sense, in that he chose people who could do things and had some qualities that he did not have.
The fact that Andy chose Jed was like he chose goodness.
He chose real beauty.
[Shelly Fremont.]
Jed I just adored him.
I'm gonna start crying.
He was so sweet.
I mean, he was like the person who I could, at any situation, go over and go like, "Oh my God," and roll my eyes to.
This is Archie Warhol.
He's been with the Factory for going on two weeks now, and I think he likes us.
Yes, I think I can say that.
Can't I, Archie? Yes.
And I think he's gonna work out fine.
[Bob Colacello.]
Jed was not part of the performance.
Jed didn't want to be part of the performance.
Jed was Andy's private life, and we all respected that.
[chattering on video.]
[soft piano music continues.]
How difficult would it have been at that time to have essentially a marriage between two men? [Jay Johnson.]
Um, really impossible, I think, at that point in time.
I think he might have liked it, you know? Because there was something very corny sometimes about Andy.
He would have thought, "Oh yeah, I can get married.
Just like everybody else.
" [soft piano music continues.]
[AI Andy.]
Being married always looked so wonderful.
It seemed that life wasn't livable if you weren't lucky enough to have a husband or a wife.
[soft harp strumming and piano playing.]
The shooting put a whole new perspective on my memories.
When I got home from the hospital, I had to wear a corset.
My whole middle was taped.
I looked down at my body, and I was afraid of it.
The scars were all so fresh.
They were sort of pretty though.
Purplish red and brown.
[piano and harp music continues.]
People should fall in love with their eyes closed.
Just close your eyes.
Don't look.
[disco music starting up.]
Because people's fantasies are what give them problems.
["You Should Be Dancing" by the Bee Gees kicking in.]
If you didn't have fantasies, you wouldn't have problems.
Because you'd just take whatever was there.
[suspenseful crescendo.]
You should be dancing, yeah You should be dancing, yeah You should be dancing, yeah My baby moves at midnight Goes right on 'til the dawn, yeah My woman takes me higher My woman keeps me warm What you doin' on your bed On your back? Ah What you doin' on your bed On your back? Ah You should be dancing, yeah Dancing, yeah What you doin' on your bed On your back? Ah What you doin' on your bed On your back? Ah You should be dancing, yeah Dancing, yeah You should be dancing, yeah You should be dancing, yeah You should be dancing, yeah You should be dancing, yeah You should be dancing, yeah You should be dancing, yeah
Next Episode