The Devil in the Disco: The Outrageous New Film Party Monster Pairs Macaulay Culkin and Seth Green as Club-Kid Murderer Michael Alig and His Very Gay Boswell, James St. James

Article excerpt

"I'm a simple girl with a simple look," says James St. James. "At an early screening I remember protesting out loud, 'I would never wear Moschino!'"

He's talking about Party Monster. Due to hit theaters this fall, it's adapted from St. James's 1999 book Disco Bloodbath, about the costume--crazy early-'90s New York club-kid scene and its disintegration following the vicious murder of drug dealer Angel Melendez by St. James's best friend, scene king Michael Alig.

It's a story St. James, along with directors Randy Barbato and Fenton Bailey, has been telling for about five years in one form or another. Under their Los Angeles-based production banner, World of Wonder, Bailey and Barbato have directed two Alig-based projects--a 1998 documentary, also titled Party Monster, and now the feature, starring Macaulay Culkin as Alig.

From the start there has been resistance. "People thought the characters were too self-indulgent or plain despicable," says Barbato. "But before there was a murder, before there was the darkness, what the club kids did was brilliant, turning themselves into post--Warhol stars and inviting everyone to a democratic party where anyone could shine. A celebristocracy. They were predicting the future, from reality television to the 'two seconds of fame' phenomenon. …

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