Play peek-a-boo with Robert De Niro. Check. Get held up at gunpoint while dressed as Winnie the Pooh. Check. Have sex with a Hollywood producer while being paid to be Santa Claus at her Christmas party…Ho, Ho, Ho! And check.
Every year, thousands of people from all over the world move to Hollywood, with nothing more than their hopes and an irrational sense of romanticism and fairness, to pursue their dreams of fame and fortune. Rather than wait tables, I opted to perform at children’s birthday parties and quickly found out how competitive and political they are. One moment finding myself at Steven Spielberg’s house, hoping against hope to be discovered while sweating through a Teletubbies costume, and the next dressed as a faux-Honey Bear with a gun to my head in Compton. During my wildly event-filled journey, I discovered it doesn’t matter how much money or fame you have, true happiness comes from within.
This book is a cross between “People” and “Parenting Magazine…” on crack… and with a beer chaser. Working as an entertainer at children’s birthday parties in Los Angeles for several years, I documented all of my sometimes-frightening, often-hilarious experiences. I performed for everyone from Steven Spielberg and Cindy Crawford to your average, Joe-Six-Pack families in such poor neighborhoods, that everyone on the block had to pitch in just so Barney could make an appearance at their party. Beyond face painting and balloon animals, are five kegs or a live elephant really needed to celebrate a one-year-old’s birthday? I’m going with no.
Hollywood Clown is geared toward anyone who loves to hear stories about Hollywood and all its craziness, as well as anyone with a child, grandchild, or anyone who has ever been to a child’s birthday party or is about to throw one. It is not so much a memoir as it is an insider’s, sardonic look at what celebrities (and parents in general) will do for their children… And how many of them are bigger kids than their own children.
If you lived in L.A. from March 1995 to October 2002 and had a performer come to your party, event or gathering, it may have been me, and you may be in the book. And if you are, you’d better hope you AND your children behaved. If you think I performed at your child’s birthday party send me a photo from that party along with some basic information. I’ll need the exact party date, the city you lived in at the time of the party and your child’s name and age. If it turns out I did do your party I’ll send you a FREE autographed copy of my book. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Grand Prize Winner – DIY Convention Book Festival 2015
Grand Prize Winner – Hollywood Book Festival 2014
Grand Prize Winner – Southern California Book Festival 2014
Winner – Best General Non-Fiction – London Book Festival 2014
Winner – Best General Non-Fiction – Pacific Rim Book Festival 2015
Winner – Best General Non-Fiction – Florida Book Festival 2015
Winner – Best General Non-Fiction – Amsterdam Book Festival 2015
Winner – Best General Non-Fiction – San Francisco Book Festival 2015
Finalist – New Non-Fiction – The National Indie Excellence Book Awards 2015
Silver Medal Winner – Adult Non-Fiction – The Wishing Shelf Book Awards 2014
Runner-Up – General Non-Fiction – The Great Northwest Book Festival 2015
Runner-Up – General Non-Fiction – New York Book Festival 2015
Runner-Up – General Non-Fiction – The Holiday Book Festival 2015
Honorable Mention – General Non-Fiction – New England Book Festival 2014
Honorable Mention – General Non-Fiction – Paris Book Festival 2015
The Best Theatre and Acting Books of 2013 – Top 10 – Actors Hub
“HOLLYWOOD CLOWN is no joke! Jason gives you the inside track of a celebrity kid party. You feel like YOU are inside the Barney or Santa costume talking to Billy Crystal or Robert De Niro! His stories are priceless.”
– Barbara Deutsch, Entertainment Industry Career Coach and bestselling author of Open Up or Shut Up!
“HOLLYWOOD CLOWN proves Jason Lassen has not only led a hilariously interesting life, he also knows how to write. It’s a laugh-out-loud inside look at the world of celebrity parties where nothing is off-limits and nothing is too outrageous; the real surprise is the enormous heart and soul Mr. Lassen puts into this book. At its core HOLLYWOOD CLOWN is a survivor tale of a boy who grew into a man…dressed in costume.”
– Bart Baker, bestselling author of What Remains and Honeymoon With Harry
“Even the word “clown” gives some people the creeps. There have been many stories about struggling actors in Hollywood, but Jason Lassen takes you on a hysterical journey you will not forget. After nearly 1,000 kids’ parties, we are lucky he can still write. Don’t miss this entertaining and detailed account of the good, the bad and the ugly of the famous and not-so-famous kids’ parties in Hollywood. This is the tell-all book other clowns don’t want you to read!”
– John Farrentine, Senior Producer/Writer, Bruno White Entertainment, Inc.
“A wonderful treat! Hilarious, salacious, and endearing. It reminded me of Bad Santa in a Barney costume. I enjoyed this book and the characters so much, I read it twice. And laughed out loud both times again and again.”
– Michael Loynd, bestselling author of All Things Irish and Gossiping With a Witch