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Hit and Run: How Jon Peters and Peter Guber Took Sony for a Ride in Hollywood

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  321 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
"Hit and Run" tells the improbable and often hilarious story of how two Hollywood film packagers went on a campaign to reinvent themselves as studio executives-- at Sony's expense. Veteran reporters Nancy Griffin and Kim Masters chronicle the rise of Jon Peters, a former hairdresser, seventh-grade dropout, and juvenile delinquent, and his soulless soul mate, Peter Guber-- ...more
Paperback, 496 pages
Published June 19th 1997 by Touchstone Books (first published 1996)
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Jack Gattanella
Feb 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bio
"They would fight every day, break up every day... that's been their style - screaming continuously." (one Guber-Peters employee) "They are incredibly different, almost antithetical. One is like a machine, the other is like an animal. One is mind and the other is heart. And that's why they're so good together." (Stan Brooks)

"The Japanese, when they give a guy a horse and a suit of armor, they expect you to go out and die for them... they expect you to go out and fight to the death. And Guber was
Andrew Rodgers
I'd been aware of this book for a long while but hadn't taken the time to sit down and check it out. Now that I have, I'm glad to have done so, but am left a little lukewarm by the whole tale. Interestingly, what attracted me to it in the first place - the story of excess and how two men effectively plundered Sony through mis-management and outrageous behavior - became less interesting the further I got into it.

The thing is, it's the easiest thing in the world to criticize leadership. There are
Aug 21, 2012 added it
Shelves: want-to-read
As recommended by Kevin Smith (yes, that one) on the "How Did This Get Made?" podcast.
Apr 10, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Note: Hit and Run was written by Nancy Griffin and KIM Masters, not 'Ken' Masters.

The infamous tenure of Peter Guber and Jon Peters at Sony Pictures is the stuff of Hollywood legend (if not nightmare), and I'd read many stories over the years in different sources. The 2014 Sony Pictures hack led me back to this book, thanks to the journalism of Kim Masters. This is a fascinating look at a very interesting time; the era of the blockbuster pre-Internet, and almost pre-CGI effects.

The book chronicl
Apr 16, 2012 rated it liked it
This is only a book you should read if you have a deep interest in the movie industry. The book, written in the 90s, is about two guys who somehow become movie executives and get Sony to buy their company and then run the company into the ground by making terrible movie choices. There were A LOT of names to keep track of in this book, and not just people names, company names, too! It seemed like companies just kept merging and buying each other. It was hard to keep track of what was going on. An ...more
Samsokrith Chhaly
Oct 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Reading Hit and Run is like reading a Chinese strategy book. Power struggle, strategic alliance, negotiation tactics, journey/rise to power... are what you can enjoy when reading this book. Moreover, these real-life experiences are unfold at the backdrop of the movie industry, one of the most tricky business industry, not to mention that it is Hollywood that is the setting of this book. The only let down is that the story is written from many "external" sources but lacks of information from the ...more
Aug 06, 2017 rated it liked it
In-depth coverage of the purchase of venerable Hollywood institution Columbia Pictures by Sony in the late 1980s. It was the first (but not the last) time a Japanese corporation would try to break into the world of movies, and it was spectacularly unsuccessful. The American "greed is good" mentality that fueled the '80s (leading also to the insider trading scandal) clashed mightily with the more team-oriented approach the Japanese typically took...leading to accumulation of vast wealth on the pa ...more
Josh Sellers
Nov 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
The Story of failing upwards to 80+ Million Dollars and bleeding Columbia/Sony Pictures dry.
Feb 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
More Hollywood drama, a good take on how to make a hugely successful Japanese electronics company less successful with things like 'Last Action Hero.'
May 11, 2009 rated it liked it
Writer-producer Larry Wilson told me that there are just two types of people working in Hollywood -- attackers and attractors. This book is about two unscrupulous attackers, Jon Peters and Peter Guber, who famously ran the Sony studios (into the ground, some would say). I found the book on the remainder shelf and of course it's dated, having been released in 1996. Many people might not agree, but showbiz culture has grown both more businesslike and more uncertain since then. Studio executives wh ...more
Ben Harrison
Aug 21, 2012 rated it liked it
In December 1987, the Guber-Peters Co. announced a merger with Barris. "We're a real studio now," Jon boasted to the Los Angeles Times. "I want to build another MCA." It was a grand dream: MCA, the parent of Universal Studios, was a sprawling entertainment empire worth billions. Jon may have made a big leap, but still his past haunted him. The Times couldn't resist observing: "That would make quite a climb for the 41-year-old seventh-grade dropout and reform school graduate who began his show-bu ...more
Steven Kent
Interesting book.

John Peters is a tough guy who works as a hair dresser. Peter Guber is a movie guy and a wuss. Together, they become a formidable team that rides the wave when Sony buys out a movie studio.

They produce a few hits, a lot of flops, and they run the studio into the ground. Peters has a romance with Barbara Streisand and a feud with Chris Kristopherson. Guber tries to make his mark on Hollywood without getting smashed.

Neither man comes off as talented or sympathetic.
A.M. Riley
Nancy Griffin has a lovely sharp tongue and a seeming bloody vendetta against Peters and Guber. Or maybe she's just outraged and it isn't personal.

But it sure reads like it's personal. Its just juicy sick. I usually avoid the Entertainment Tonight stuff and the Hollywood Rags and the gossip in the hallways. But she hooked me and I found myself online looking up all of the persons involved in the schemes and catastrophes.
Jun 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
Showbiz tell-all about mega producers Peter Guber and Jon Peters, who bullied, badgered and coerced their way to the top when they were put in charge of Columbia Pictures in the 1990's, and proceeded to run it into the ground. Unbelievable tales of greed and excess coupled with astounding incompetence will make you shake your head in disbelief how anything worthwhile at the movies ever gets made in the first place.
Apr 20, 2007 rated it really liked it
Hollywood shysters took honest Japanese businessmen for every penny when Sony bought Columbia Pictures and put Peter Guber and Jon Peters in charge. Essential book about the film industry, as the last 20 years of major studio business is a direct result of Columbia's ridiculously inflated spending and Sony's dumbfounding business plan during those years.
Sergio GRANDE films
Nov 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
According to this book Jon Peters and Peter Guber were like Don Simpson-Jerry Bruckheimer minus the artistic talent and the high ethics. One left you with bruises, the other one tried to leave no fingerprints.
Only in Hollywood...
Feb 16, 2011 rated it liked it
Wow the amount of money that was flowing around Hollywood would have gotten rid of America's deficit. Not sure how I feel about movies now that I read this book, yes some great ideas were implemented but so much wasted.
Dwayne Ackley
Jan 05, 2009 rated it it was amazing
A Great Book about Jon Peters and Peter Guber, two producers (Flashdance, Hook, Batman) who ended up running a studio (Sony) during the early nineties and nearly wrecking the company. Good companion piece to "Rebel without a Crew" (They ran the studio when it bought Rodriguez's film).
Amy Wolf
Feb 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
One of the more amazing stories of how producers Peter Guber & John Peters participated in "the most public screwing in the history of motion pictures." Watch as they plunder Sony & the Japanese for hundreds of millions, then walk away unscathed.
Malcolm Frawley
Dec 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
Another sordid tale of greed & hubris. Moderate talents promoted way above their competency levels & then rewarded with squillions once they fail. Only in Hollywood? A compelling read.
Feb 01, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
This book is double the length it should have been. The authors seem unable to omit a detail, making the many stories difficult to follow and diluting the impact of the central debacle.
Steven Glover
Aug 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
An hilarious account of Hollywood excess. Loved it!
Jul 01, 2014 rated it liked it
I admire Peters more than Guber. I should also have read the Don Simpson Book
Aaron Goldfarb
Oct 03, 2012 rated it really liked it
Amazing read about quintessential Hollywood self-promotion and lack of awareness. Jon Peters is the real-life Sammy Glick.
Drew Raley
Dec 15, 2014 rated it liked it
Prime-cut backroom gossip , delivered with wit and sourced from Hollywood players brave enough to be quoted by name.
John Devlin
Mar 21, 2007 rated it it was ok
More tales from Hollywood's trenches that attempt to point out the fact that the movie makers, like the Emperor, have no clothes when understanding what's good.
Sam Gill
Jun 06, 2015 rated it did not like it
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Mar 15, 2007
Stefan Gill
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Apr 22, 2018
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Jan 11, 2018
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