THE HOLLYWOOD SHORTIES is a documentary on the birth of organized sports in the American dwarf community. Beginning in the 1950's and rising to prominence in the 1980's, the Hollywood Shorties were a basketball team, the first of their kind and unique in the history of dwarf athletics. Formed from an insular community of recognizable-but-typecast actors in... wait for it... Hollywood, the team began simply as a rare outlet for little people to gather publicly. As the team's athletic skill increased, so did its membership and so too its popularity. By the early 1980's, the Shorties had created a niche in entertainment akin to the Harlem Globetrotters, playing exhibitions from Hawthorne High to the Fabulous Forum with their signature blend of comedy and basketball prowess. Simultaneously, they found themselves the vanguard of a revolutionary movement to bring little people into the public eye as something other than objects of curiosity. But, in a bittersweet turn, the very popularity that the Shorties single-handedly created would eventually phase the team out of the sport they pioneered. However, their legacy stands without peer and is recounted here by original team members and the generation they inspired.
Tony Cox - innumerable screen credits: Nice Dreams, Under the Rainbow, Return of the Jedi, Faerie Tale Theatre, Captain EO, Spaceballs, Beetlejuice, Willow, Friday, Me, Myself & Irene, Oz the Great and Powerful.
Martin Klebba - founder of the Statesmen, legacy team; has a million film credits.
Kevin Thompson - working actor; Under the Rainbow, Blade Runner, Return of the Jedi.
Scott Danberg - four-time paralympian, got start in athletics with the Shorties.
Jimmy Briscoe - former clown in Ringling Bros Circus.
Joe Gieb - Under the Rainbow, Weird Science, numerous TV shows.
George Rossitto - manager of the Shorties; Under the Rainbow, The Fall Guy, Faerie Tale Theatre.
Chris Romano - after leaving the Shorties, started his own dwarf team in Michigan, the "Motor City Micronauts"; Under the Rainbow, Return of the Jedi, This is Spinal Tap.
Joe Griffo - an electronics technician, he also has had a long career in the film industry.
Adam Romano - Chris Romano's son, plays on a new dwarf team along with Martin Klebba the Statesmen.
Lydia Graber - engaged to George Rossitto; married to late-Shorty Larry Green; accountant and publicist for the team in the '70s.
Scott Green - brother to late-Shorty Larry Green; booked numerous gigs for the Shorties and also refereed, including the earliest games vs. Laker Girls.
Glen Haserot - coached the Shorties from the mid-'80s through the early '90s.
Anthony Slide - Hollywood and Film Historian, Archivist and Preservationist.
Narrated by Brian Stepanek - Actor / Director - Known for his work on Stage, in Film and Television.
Plus Special Guests
RYAN STEVEN GREEN
A native of Los Angeles, Green received a BA in film with an emphasis on non-fiction filmmaking from the University of Southern California. He also minored in Neuroscience. His documentary work has sent him around the world for Emmy winning PBS show Travelscope and can be seen in the films of Jay Duplass as well as the experimental feature documentary One Day on Earth. The topics of his award-winning films are typically symptomatic of an unfashionably happy childhood: snails, moustaches, modern homesteaders, coffee, and, with his most recent feature documentary Circle the Wagen, Volkswagens. As a commercial director/editor his clients have included Nike, NASA, Torani, Plantronics, Zegna, and PowerBar. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife of seven years.