John Edward Lautner (16 July 1911 – 24 October 1994) was an American architect. Following an apprenticeship in the mid 1930s with Frank Lloyd Wright, Lautner opened his own practice in 1938, where he would work for the remainder of his career. Lautner practiced primarily in California, and the majority of his works were residential. John Lautner is perhaps best remembered for his contribution to the development of the Googie style, as well as for several Atomic Age houses he designed in the late 1950s and early 1960s, which include the Leonard Malin House, Paul Sheats House, and Russ Garcia House.
Lautner built The Chemosphere, is a modernist house in Los Angeles, California, in 1960. The building, which the Encyclopædia Britannica once called "the most modern home built in the world", is admired both for the ingenuity of its solution to the problem of the site and for its unique octagonal design.
The precariously saucer home was constructed when an aerospace engineer Leonard Malin was gifted the sloped plot of land from his father-in-law. Despite his meager engineer’s income, Malin was determined to build on the property. To this end, he wooed sponsors to help him build an innovative stilted design that would allow the home to jut out from the hillside, supported by a thick stilt. Technically the home was known as the Malin House, but one of these sponsors was a chemical manufacturer whose resins and polymers were used in building the home, hence its nickname, “Chemosphere.”
The building stands on the San Fernando Valley side of the Hollywood Hills, just off Mulholland Drive. It is a one-story octagon with around 2,200 square feet of living space. Most distinctively, the house is perched atop a 5-foot-wide concrete pole nearly 30 ft high. This innovative design was Lautner's solution to a site that, with a slope of 45 degrees, was thought to be practically unbuildable. Because of a concrete pedestal, almost 20 ft in diameter, buried under the earth and supporting the post, the house has survived earthquakes and heavy rains. The house is reached by a funicular (cable railroad). Chemosphere is bisected by a central, exposed brick wall with a fireplace, abutted by subdued seating, in the middle.
Since 1998, it has been the Los Angeles home of Benedikt Taschen, of the German publishing house Taschen, who has had the home restored; the only current issue with the home is the relatively high cost of maintenance. The recent restoration, by Escher GuneWardena Architecture, won an award from the Los Angeles Conservancy.
Body Double is a 1984 American erotic thriller film co-written and directed by Brian De Palma and starring Craig Wasson, Gregg Henry, Melanie Griffith, and Deborah Shelton. The original musical score was composed by Pino Donaggio.
The film was a direct homage to the films of Alfred Hitchcock, specifically Rear Window (1954), Vertigo (1958), and Dial M for Murder (1954) taking plot lines and themes such as voyeurism and obsession from the first two films.
After unemployed actor Jake Scully finds his girlfriend in bed with another man, he moves out and accepts an offer from fellow struggling actor Sam Bouchard to house-sit for a few weeks. Apart from getting to live in a swank and ultramodern house he also get to watch a sexy neighbor, Gloria Revelle, who does a sexy dance in front of her window every night at exactly the same time.
He becomes interested in the girl, infatuated even, following her around and eventually meeting her. She also has another admirer however and while watching her one night through his telescope, Jake sees her murdered by this other man. The police are skeptical about what he claims to have seen, but the case takes an even stranger twist when, while watching adult TV, he sees a porn star do the exact same dance he had watched for all those nights. He soon realizes he has been an unwitting accomplice in a complex plot.
Body Double contains a film within a film sequence in which pop band Frankie Goes to Hollywood performs their song "Relax” on the set of a porn film, and in which scream queen Brinke Stevens, and adult actresses Cara Lott and Annette Haven appear.