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Phillip R. Ford

Film director

Phillip Raymond Ford is a stage and film producer, director and entertainer who served most of the 1980s as "honorary straight man" in the legendary San Francisco drag troupe Sluts A-Go-Go.

Phillip R. Ford

Last Updated: October 27, 2023

Phillip Raymond Ford, a name synonymous with creativity and innovation, is a multifaceted personality in the world of entertainment. His journey has been marked by his roles as a stage and film producer, director, and entertainer. Throughout the 1980s, Ford was an essential part of the legendary San Francisco drag troupe Sluts A-Go-Go, earning him the title of the “honorary straight man” among the troupe’s dazzling performers.

The Cult Classic: Vegas in Space

One of Phillip Ford’s most celebrated accomplishments is the production and direction of the cult film Vegas in Space. This cinematic masterpiece featured the captivating performers of Sluts A-Go-Go and took the world by storm. Premiering at the 1992 Sundance Film Festival, it quickly became a sensation, gracing festivals worldwide. The film’s popularity extended to television, as it was broadcast on USA Network’s Up All Night with Rhonda Shear. It also received recognition on popular shows like Entertainment Tonight and the E! Entertainment Television Network.

A Theatrical Trailblazer

Ford’s creative journey with Sluts A-Go-Go extended beyond the silver screen. Together with luminaries like Doris Fish, Miss X, and “Tippi,” he crafted and graced the stage with a series of theatrical nightclub spectacles. These performances were nothing short of notorious, including titles like The Miss Solar System Pageant (1984), The Happy Hour Show (1985), Nightclub of the Living Dead (1986), Box Office Poison (1987), Sluts A-Go-Go Still Alive! (1989), and Who Does That Bitch Think She Is?: An All-Star Tribute To Doris Fish (1990).

Directorial Brilliance

Phillip R. Ford’s creative genius extended to directing stage plays. One of his notable works includes Phillip R. Ford’s Dolls, a sensational send-up of the 1967 film Valley of the Dolls, starring Connie Champagne in 1993. Ford’s directorial talents were also evident in his production of The Bad Seed (1987) at Theater Rhinoceros, a remarkably dramatic presentation. His vivid one-woman tribute, Simply Stunning – The Doris Fish Story (2002), featuring Arturo Galster, paid homage to his mentor and collaborator Doris Fish.

A Versatile Performer

Beyond the scenes, Ford stepped into the spotlight as an actor. He took on the title role in Behind the Candelabra – My Life with Liberace (2002), a play adapted from the memoir of Liberace’s chauffeur and paramour, Scott Thorsen. Ford showcased his vocal prowess at the Plush Room in TenderLoins (1994), and his acting talents were evident in the intriguing motion picture Virtue (1999).

A Lifelong Passion for Film

Phillip Ford’s passion for film ignited at a young age. He started making films when he was just fifteen years old. His very first professional film short, Rollercoaster to Hell (1982), garnered attention when it was featured on KTVU’s Creature Features. Furthermore, he shared his knowledge and experience as a Guest Lecturer in “Contemporary Cinema” at his alma mater, San Francisco State University. It was at this esteemed institution that he honed his skills, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Film Production.

Contributions to Literature

Phillip Ford’s creative spirit isn’t limited to the visual arts. His writing talents have also left an imprint. His works found their way into the anthology Good Advice for Young Trendy People of All Ages (Manic D Press, 2005) and Straight to Hell #65 – The Manhattan Review of Unnatural Acts.

Phillip Raymond Ford’s journey through the realms of entertainment has been one marked by creativity, innovation, and a relentless pursuit of artistic expression. His contributions to the world of film, theater, and performance have left an indelible mark, solidifying his status as a true creative force.

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