“The Devil and John Holmes” has everything you could want in a magazine story: Sex, drugs, murder. A fourteen-inch penis. It had to be great. There was no other way. But here’s the secret. For all the freebasing and the blood, the satin bikini briefs and decorative human skulls, the porn and the binges and the deathbed confessions, “The Devil and John Holmes” is a love story. At least it is in Sager’s hands.”—Max Linsky, founding editor of Longform.org.
“The Devil and John Holmes” is one of the most terrific sagas we have ever published.”— Jann Wenner, editor and publisher, Rolling Stone
“I can recognize the truth in these stories—tales about the darkest possible side of wretched humanity. Sager has obviously spent too much time in flop houses in Laurel Canyon.” — Hunter S. Thompson, author of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and Hells Angels.
“In his audio commentary on the New Line DVD release of ‘Boogie Nights,’ P.T. Anderson cites as a major influence reporter Mike Sager’s article in the June 15. 1989 Rolling Stone, ‘The Devil and John Holmes.’’—Stephen Lemons, Salon.com
Paul Thomas Anderson on WTF with Marc Maron, episode 565, discussing the origins of the classic Boogie Nights: http://www.wtfpod.com/
Marc Maron: “And then you also dealt with some of the drugs, some of the John Holmes story.”
Paul Thomas Anderson: “Yeah, there was a great Rolling Stone article that I read.”
MM: “That’s right. That fucking thing was mind blowing.”
Paul Thomas Anderson: “There were two things. That article was gigantic to me to help figure some things out. And also, do you remember the show called A Current Affair? They did a piece on Shauna Grant, who was a porn star who had a really tragic end. She committed suicide. But those two things bridged the gap between growing up around (porn), knowing what it was, having a feel for it, and really seeing a fuller story.”