Radley Metzger

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Radley Metzger
Born (1929-01-21) January 21, 1929 (age 86)
New York City, New York
Nationality American
Other names Henry Paris
Education City College of New York
Occupation Film director
Years active 1957 - 1984
Known for adult erotic films and related.

Radley Metzger (also known by the pseudonym, "Henry Paris") (born January 21, 1929) is an American filmmaker and film distributor most noted for popular adult erotic films, including I, a Woman (1966), The Opening of Misty Beethoven (1975) and The Private Afternoons of Pamela Mann (1975) .


In his early career, Metzger worked primarily as a film editor [1] employed in cutting trailers for Janus Films, a major distributor of foreign art films, especially those of Ingmar Bergman. His directorial debut, Dark Odyssey (1958) (co-directed with William Kyriakis) was a drama concerning the experiences of a Greek immigrant arriving in New York. The film was favorably reviewed by the New York Times.[1]

Along with film distributor Ava Leighton, in 1961 Metzger founded Audubon Films, a film distribution company that specialized in importing international features, some of which were marketed into the gradually expanding sexploitation film genre. Metzger's skills as an editor were employed in re-cutting and augmenting many of the features Audubon handled, including I Spit on Your Grave, Twilight Girls, and I, a Woman.[1] Audubon's first run-away success was Mac Ahlberg's I, a Woman (U. S. 1966).

Metzger's second directorial effort, The Dirty Girls (shot in 1963 and released in 1965) marks his emergence as a major auteur in the sexploitation film genre. His subsequent films were often shot in Europe [1] and were adapted from novels or other literary sources, including La Dame aux Camellias, Carmen, Pygmalion, Therese and Isabelle, Naked Came the Stranger, and The Cat and the Canary.[1] He cites John Farrow, Michael Powell and Orson Welles as influencing his work.[1] His films have had scores written by composers including Piero Piccioni, Georges Auric, Georges Delerue and Stelvio Cipriani.[1]

Under the pseudonym "Henry Paris," Metzger also directed several explicit adult erotic features during the mid- to late-1970s. These films are typified by high production values, especially The Opening of Misty Beethoven (1975) and The Private Afternoons of Pamela Mann (1975) and are generally critically celebrated. Some were also released in softcore versions.[1]

With his 1978 feature The Cat and the Canary, Metzger distinguished himself as one of the few adult film auteurs to direct a dramatic feature outside of the sexploitation film genre. The film starred Honor Blackman and Carol Lynley.

Selected awards[edit]

In 1977, Metzger's film The Opening of Misty Beethoven was the recipient of the first Adult Film Association of America awards for Best Direction (as Henry Paris), Best Film, and Best Actor (Jamie Gillis). In 2002 the same production won Best Classic Release on DVD.

In 2010, Metzger was also the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Oldenburg International Film Festival, where he served as a judge in 2011. His work was the subject of a retrospective at the UCLA Film and Television Archive in the summer of 2011.

Selected filmography[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Metzger was born and raised in New York City. He received a B.A. in Dramatic Arts from City College of New York, where he studied with filmmakers Hans Richter and Leo Seltzer. He also studied acting privately with director Harold Clurman. During the Korean War, Metzger served in the U. S. Air Force with the 1350th Photographic Group, which interrupted his graduate studies at Columbia University.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h A Talk with Radley Metzger (Interview)
  • Cook, David A. (2002). History of the American cinema 9. University of California Press. pp. 274–275. ISBN 0-520-23265-8. 

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