S.E. Hinton’s Staircase Cameo

by Lee Roy Chapman


Located on the northwest southwest corner of Greenwood and (then) Brady Street, this staircase is the spot where an anonymous hooker, in a cameo appearance by Tulsa writer S.E. Hinton, propositons a young Rusty James, Matt Dillion’s character in the film Rumblefish.

Filmed immediately after the 1982 production of the SE Hinton novel The Outsiders, Rumblefish is a black and white post-modern art film adaptation of SE Hinton’s classic, directed by Francis Ford Coppola and heavily influenced by Larry Clark’s photobook Tulsa. It was shot on what was then the geographic margins of Tulsa, mainly in the Brady and Greenwood districts which were almost completely abandoned at the time. Coppola contacted Tulsa artist Gaylord Herron, who loaned the director his copy of Larry Clark’s Tulsa. Due to heavy usage, the binding came apart and the trade paper book was returned to Gaylord rebound.

Larry Clark cites encouragement from Francis Ford Coppola as the ultimate inspiration behind his transition from still photography to motion pictures.