BootLeg Betty

Say What?! Sex, Drugs & Movie Stars: 20 Outrageous Quotes By and About I’ll Eat You Last’s Sue Mengers
By Josh Ferri April 16, 2013 – 5:48PM


In John Logan’s new Broadway solo play I’ll Eat You Last, the divine Bette Midler transforms herself into the late Hollywood super agent Sue Mengers. This titan of the 1970s boasted a client list that included Barbra Streisand, Cher, Steve McQueen, Candice Bergen, Joan Collins, Nick Nolte, Faye Dunaway and Burt Reynolds. After Tinseltown turned its back on her professionally, Mengers (who died in 2011) become one of Beverly Hills’ top hostesses, with A-List stars crowding her dinner parties and Mengers (joint in hand) at the center of it all. Midler, a 2013 Audience Choice Awards nominee, officially opens at Broadway’s Booth Theatre on April 24, and in anticipation, we’ve collected 10 of Mengers’ most notable quotes and 10 observations by the famous people who knew her. Scroll down to get to know Sue Mengers in just 20 quotes.

“Sue was not a star in the conventional sense, but in her world she was a star. She was kicked to the curb. But she did not compromise. She did what the fuck she wanted to do. And that’s all she wrote. I wish I had those balls.” —I’ll Eat Your Last star Bette Midler

“She was one of a kind, acerbically funny, witty, brash, tough but cuddly, a powerful woman in a man’s world.” —Barbra Streisand, Mengers’ biggest and most famous client

“Her enemies dismissed her as loud, overbearing and vulgar. But to the stellar list of above-the-title clients in her heyday, Mengers was therapist, confessor, Jewish mother, best friend and unflagging chief advocate.” —Nikki Finke, Editor-in-Chief

“Sue even had a friend blowing marijuana smoke into her face as she passed away. She was high until the bitter end.” —Midler on Mengers’ affinity for pot

“She was the modern-day Gertrude Stein. People would gather and exchange ideas and talk about things that were not talked about anywhere else in town.” —CBS President Leslie Moonves on Mengers’ starry at-home dinners

“The picture I will keep is of her seated on a sofa at a party shortly before the [2009] Oscars, her hair and dress perfect, a vision of serenity until you got close enough to hear her intone the word ‘cocksucker.’” —Anne Stringfield (Mrs. Steve Martin), a frequent guest at Mengers’ parties

“She was a bulldog with charm.” —Michael Caine, former client

“If there is a God, Sue is going to be in trouble.” —Joanna Poitier, fellow agent

“If you’re wondering why all the A-Listers wanted to be in her presence years after she retired as an agent, it’s because she didn’t need anything from them. How’s that for a life lesson?” —Kathy Griffin

“Sue loved her pot. That’s one thing Sue and I had in common. We all loved to smoke pot, lots of it. She always had the joints rolled, and kept them in a little box in the coffee table.” —Bill Maher

“Don’t worry, honey. They’re only killing bit players.” —Mengers to Barbra Streisand after the Charles Manson murders

“I’m the only agent who actually gives head if you hire the client.” —Mengers to director Otto Preminger

“Honey, I would rather be a whore in a Turkish prison than an agent. The clients are all pigs. They’ll all leave you.”

“My own mother wouldn’t have got in if she was standing outside in the rain.” —Mengers on her Hollywood dinner parties

“Charlton Heston?” What the fuck, he’s second-rate, I can get her Barbra Streisand to read it!” —Mengers on an airplane hijacker who demanded that Heston read her manifesto

“Get rid of that asshole your agent.” —Mengers to potential clients, explaining, “What should I have said? ‘Your agent’s wonderful, stay with him’?”

“He took me out last week and tried to fuck me. And he isn’t even a client.” —Mengers on meeting actor Maximilian Schell

“Schindler’s B-list.” —Mengers to a friend as they entered a less-than-exclusive Hollywood gathering

“If Tom Cruise, Tom Hanks, and 10 or 20 people of my choosing said, ‘Sue, we’re signing lifetime contracts with you that stipulate that we cannot fire you until you die, but you can fire us,’ then I would be an agent again.” —Mengers after 10 years of retirement

“The whole world is mammals, and I’m a dinosaur.” —Mengers to I’ll Eat You Last playwright John Logan

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