My Mother, Barbara Rothstein, is a brilliant writer. She wrote this and I am sharing it here.
This year marks the 25th death anniversary of my husband Roger.
August 31, 1935 – September 12, 1988. He was 53.
Roger: Fun-loving, caring, down to earth. Generous, colorful, smart. Loaded with common sense, great instincts, a spontaneous sense of humor and an innate goodness. He loved his two daughters, good company, good food, good things…especially cars and watches! He loved the business of making films and working on the production of a film and making it happen. He was the go-to guy for making things happen. You wanted a car wrapped in cellophane with a big red bow on top? Done…that afternoon! You wanted a birthday care package delivered to your kid at camp overnight? Done…before anyone ever heard of Fed Ex! That was Roger.
The first film he worked on was Act One (1963). There were to be 27 more as he worked his way up from 2nd Assistant Director to production manager/line producer. He ultimately became the head of production management at Paramount Studios, the job he loved best of all.
His own funny, creative writing was amazing, and to this day, friends tell us they still have all of the letters Roger sent them! He loved to write. I can only imagine how he would’ve loved Facebook and Twitter. I know he would’ve thanked and acknowledged all the wonderful people in his life who helped him along the way, people he was always grateful for, people he never forgot, people he never stopped loving.
We’ve pieced together the titles of the films he actually worked on into a little narrative as our way of recognizing some of his accomplishments.
In Memory of Roger Michael Rothstein
September 12, 2013
Act One opens in The World Of Henry Orient where You Play It As It Lays. That’s what Roger and Harvey Middleman, Fireman used to say every time there was Panic In Needle Park. Me, Natalie knew that Serpico would figure out the reason for The Return of Max Dugan, even though they had Nothing In Common, except maybe Summer Wishes, Winter Dreams…maybe. But sometimes life is nothing more than a Puzzle Of A Downfall Child, like when the Paper Lion predicted The Effect Of Gamma Rays On Man-In-The-Moon Marigolds. But no one, not even Roger, our Hero At Large, could’ve predicted what would happen to Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Sadly, the Gamma rays worked like Pretty Poison and they turned into Stepford Wives! But that was before Chapter Two, The Turning Point. After that, he met Amazing Grace And Chuck and then of course, The Sunshine Boys. To this day It Only Hurts When I Laugh to think of those two old guys hurling crazy insults at each other like “Don’t even think You Oughta Be In Pictures”, and “Don’t worry…the only thing I think of when I think of you is Murder By Death, better yet, by Stiletto!” They were Two Of A Kind alright.
It Seems Like Old Times just thinking about all this. Yet even though it’s been 25 years since September 12, 1988, some things never change:
Roses are still red,
Violets Are Blue,
Your Goodbye Girls
Will always love you.
Still wishing we could Play It Again, Roger,
Love always, Barbara, Carolyn & Leslie.