John William Law, Author of Wicked Becomes Her: Bette Davis and the Story Behind Wicked Stepmother Wins Top Prize in International Book Contest

From Aplomb Publishing and author John William Law, Wicked Becomes Her offers a fascinating look at the life and career of Bette Davis, one of Hollywood’s most iconic stars and actresses of the 20th Century. The book was recognized for its outstanding writing, design and overall market appeal out of thousands of books submitted into the Book Excellence Awards.

John William Law is a multiple-award winning author and journalist whose work has appeared in newspapers, magazines, books and film.

Law has been researching and writing about film history for 25 years. His books include: Curse of the Silver Screen, Scare Tactic – The Life and Films of William Castle, Reel Horror – True Horrors Behind Hollywood’s Scary Movies, Master of Disaster: Irwin Allen – The Disaster Years, Alfred Hitchcock: The Icon Years, What Ever Happened to Mommie Dearest?, Who Nuked the Duke?, Movie Star & the Mobster, The Lost Hitchcocks, Goddess & The Girl Next Door, The Longest Suicide in Hollywood and Wicked Becomes Her: Bette Davis and the Story Behind Wicked Stepmother.

For his literary prowess, Law has been recognized with numerous international literary awards including best-performing arts title at the New York, Hollywood, and London book festivals; best non-fiction title at the San Francisco Book Festival; best non-fiction title at the Readers Favorite Book Awards; a finalist in the International Book Awards; and a winner in the Book Excellence Awards. In addition, his book, Who Nuked the Duke? was used as inspiration for the 2024 feature film documentary The Conqueror: Hollywood Fallout in which Law appears.

A multi-faceted talent, Law is also the host of a movie podcast series: Hollywood’nt: Hollywood Declassified, offering listeners a behind-the-scenes look at Hollywood stars, films, scandals and drama that didn’t make it to the big screen.

This one-on-one interview shares Law’s background and experience in writing Wicked Becomes Her: Bette Davis and the Story Behind ‘Wicked Stepmother’.

Tell us about Wicked Becomes Her.

On Friday, May 6, 1988, Bette Davis walked off the set of her last film Wicked Stepmother. Her exit for reported health reasons created a media stir when writer and director Larry Cohen decided to finish the film without her, using footage he captured during her time on set and rewriting the film to explain her absence. Davis blasted the film and its director, but when she died months after the film’s release, Wicked Stepmother would become forever connected with the legendary star, marking her final big screen appearance.

Wicked Becomes Her revisits the later years of Bette Davis’ illustrious film career, including the collection of horror films that kept her in the public eye, but through the lens of her final film – Wicked Stepmother. Though Davis abandoned the film shortly after production began, the story behind the making of the film gives readers a new look at the person behind the star.

By looking at her work on features like What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?; Hush, Hush … Sweet Charlotte; Dead Ringer; The Nanny, Burnt Offerings and more, readers will discover the drive of a movie star, whose desire to remain active in her later years was so strong that she would justify a film for no other reason than the fact that her name was on the marquee as its star.

Filled with photos of Bette Davis’ magnificent career and sections of the original script of ‘Wicked Stepmother,’ Wicked Becomes Her offers a never-before-seen look at the final years of one of the most iconic and successful actresses of the 20th Century.

What inspired you to write Wicked Becomes Her?

My aim was to offer readers a look back at an area of Bette Davis’ career that other biographers glossed over. Through the story behind the making of her final film – the troubled production of Wicked Stepmother – readers get a glimpse into the efforts of Davis to stay active in the industry she gave her life to, and the writer, director, and producer who tried to help.

How did you feel when you found out you received a Book Excellence Award?

I spent 6+ years working on Wicked Becomes Her, so it’s rewarding to see the final result not only in print, but recognized as a valuable contribution to the arts and entertainment genre.

How did your background and experience influence your writing?

After spending years as a reporter and journalist for newspapers and magazines, I began writing about film history. Researching and writing about film production and the lives of actors and filmmakers like Montgomery Clift, Marilyn Monroe, Doris Day, John Wayne, Alfred Hitchcock, and Joan Crawford allows me to tell stories behind classic films and the people who made them.

What is one message you would like readers to remember?

There have been many excellent biographies on the life and career of Bette Davis. The attention here is to look at the drive of a movie star and her desire to maintain an active career. From What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? to her final work, Bette Davis was determined to keep working in Hollywood. As she aged the work became harder to come by and the quality suffered, but she was still Bette Davis, and nothing diminished her stardom or her stamina.

Bette Davis had a career that spanned six decades and offered some of the best performances an actress has ever given. Let there be no attempt to diminish her accomplishments. Success and failure are often intertwined and time has a way of mitigating both. Bette is a legend for the films that captured her at her best; but it is those films that caught her past her prime, that demonstrate how she could weather the test of time; survive failure, and remain a legend.

Purchasing the Book

Wicked Becomes Her: Bette Davis and the Story Behind ‘Wicked Stepmother’, is available for sale on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple iBooks, and other online bookstores.

Readers are encouraged to purchase their copy today:

Connect with John William Law:

Media Contact
Company Name: Author News Network
Contact Person: Media Relations
Email: Send Email
Country: United States