Danny Peary

Dannis Peary (born August 8, 1949)[1] is an American film critic[2] and sports writer. He has written and edited many books on cinema and sports-related topics. Peary is most famous for his book Cult Movies (1980), which spawned two sequels, Cult Movies 2 (1983) and Cult Movies 3 (1988) and are all credited for providing more public interest to the cult movie phenomenon.[3]

Danny Peary
Born (1949-08-08) August 8, 1949 (age 71)
Alma mater
Years active1971-present
Known for

He is the brother of film critic, columnist, actor, and documentary filmmaker Gerald Peary.

Early life and educationEdit

Dannis Peary was born in Philippi, West Virginia to Laura and Joseph Y. Peary, a professor. [1] At some point in his childhood, he moved to South Carolina and then New Jersey. In 1971, he earned a B.A. in History from the University of Wisconsin in Madison. While attending UW, he along with Karyn Kay ran the Pinocchio Film Society. In 1975, he earned an M.A. with honors[1] in Cinema at the University of Southern California. While attending USC, he worked as the fine arts and sports editor for L.A. Panorama. Since 1977, he has lived in New York City.


Film criticismEdit

Over the years, his film criticism writing has been published in the Canadian TV Guide, Focus on Film, Bijou magazine, The Velvet Light Trap, Newsday, Film and Filming, The Philadelphia Bulletin, Movieline, Cineaste, Video Times/Video Movies, The New York Daily News, The Boston Globe, SoHo News, and TimesSquare.com. For several years, he was a contributing editor to the now defunct Brinkzine.com[permanent dead link]. He formally had a blog, "Danny Peary on Film", for Sag Harbor Express, was the New York correspondent for the Australian magazine FilmInk, and now conducts celebrity interviews to Dan's Papers called, "Danny Peary Talks To..."[4]

Cult Movies booksEdit

In 1981, Peary released his book, Cult Movies. He followed it up with Cult Movies 2 in 1983 and Cult Movies 3 in 1989. As the titles suggest, these books covered critically ignored (at the time) cult films. Each book contained essays (100 in the first volume, 50 in the second, and 50 in the third) for each film, including production details, including information gleaned from interviews Peary had with various producers, directors and actors. All three volumes contained one essay by guest contributor Henry Blinder; the remaining essays were written by Peary. Peary also wrote Guide for the Film Fanatic (1986), reviewing a far wider range of films, albeit via smaller entries.

The Cult Movies books helped foster a growing interest in the cult movie phenomenon among the more general film fan audience[citation needed]. Peary's response to the films under discussion was not always positive, and his writing often shows bemusement regarding the appeal of some titles, as well as occasional disgust. In some ways the Cult Movies books can be seen as one of the first critical “Seal of Approval” acknowledgements of many of these film titles.[citation needed] In 2014, Workman Publishing released three genre ebooks, with 100 revised chapters culled from Peary's trilogy, under the titles, Cult Horror Movies, Cult Midnight Movies and Cult Crime Movies.[3]

Sports writingEdit

In 2004, he worked with Ralph Kiner on his autobiography, Baseball Forever: Reflections on 60 Years in the Game. In 2010, Peary and Tom Clavin published a biography about Roger Maris titled, Roger Maris: Baseball's Reluctant Hero. In 2012, they published another biography about Gil Hodges titled, Gil Hodges: The Brooklyn Bums, The Miracle Mets and the Extraordinary Life of a Baseball Legend. In 2015, he collaborated with Olympic gold medalist and cancer survivor Shannon Miller on her memoir, It's Not about Perfect: Competing for My Country and Fighting for My Life. Also in 2015, he published Baseball Immortal: Derek Jeter: A Career in Quotes. In 2016, he published Jackie Robinson in Quotes: The Remarkable Life of Baseball's Most Significant Player. In 2018, he collaborated with Hana Ali on a book about the origins of her father's greatest quotes, Ali on Ali: Why He Said What He Said When He Said It.

Television careerEdit

ThunderCats and SilverHawksEdit

In 1985, he wrote an episode of the animated show, ThunderCats, titled "The Mountain." In 1986, he wrote an episode for SilverHawks titled "Undercover."

Sports-related televisionEdit

Beginning in 1986, he collaborated as a writer with Tim McCarver on radio, TV, and other projects. From 2000 to 2017, he was the writer-researcher on the national sports interview TV show, The Tim McCarver Show and has done 3 books with McCarver, a close friend. In 2017-18, he was the writer-researcher for The James Brown Show. Since 2019, he has been the Head Writer and Researcher for the nationally syndicated TV interview show, "GameTime with Boomer Esiason".

Various careersEdit

He began writing circa 1970. He was a script reader for the short-lived production company Brut Productions in 1975, and a photo researcher for Workman Publishing in 1977 for "TV Book".

Media appearancesEdit

He was interviewed for True Hollywood Story documentaries on the E! Network, the 2010 documentary Machete Maidens Unleashed!. The director of the film, Mark Hartley, has said that, "I'd worn my copies of Cult Movies 1, 2 and 3 into the ground from constant re-reading so meeting author Danny Peary was a pleasure."[5] He made appearances in James Westby's doc "At the Video Store" and Danny Wolf's "Time Warp: The 100 Greatest Cult Films of All-time". A documentary by Brian Saur about the influence of Peary's books on fans, critics, and filmmakers is in progress.[3]



  • Peary, Danny (1981). Cult movies : the classics, the sleepers, the weird and the wonderful.
  • — (1983). Cult Movies 2.
  • — (1986). Guide for the Film Fanatic.
  • — (1989). Cult Movies 3.
  • Cult Movie Stars (1991)
  • Alternate Oscars (1993), Peary's alternate choices for best picture, actor, and actress Oscars for the film years from 1927 through 1991


  • How to Buy, Trade and Invest in Baseball Cards & Collectibles (1989), with Bruce Chadwick
  • Tim McCarver's Baseball for Brain Surgeons and other Fans (1998), with Tim McCarver
  • The Perfect Season (1999), with Tim McCarver
  • Raising a Team Player (2002), with Harry Sheehy
  • 1,001 Reasons to Love Baseball (2003), with Mary Tiegreen
  • Baseball Forever: Reflections on Sixty Years in the Game (2004), with Ralph Kiner
  • Roger Maris: Baseball's Reluctant Hero (2010), with Tom Clavin
  • Gil Hodges: The Brooklyn Bums, the Miracle Mets and the Extraordinary Life of a Baseball Legend (2012), with Tom Clavin
  • It's Not About Perfect: Competing for My Country and Fighting for My Life" (2015), with Shannon Miller
  • Ali on Ali: Why He Said What He Said When He Said It" (2018), with Hana Ali


  • Close-Ups: The Movie Star Book (1978)
  • Omni's Screen Flights/Screen Fantasies: The Future According to Science Fiction Cinema (1984)
  • Cult Baseball Players: The Greats, the Flakes, the Weird and the Wonderful (1990)
  • We Played the Game: 65 Players Remember Baseball's Greatest Era, 1947-1964 (1994)
  • Super Bowl: The Game of Their Lives (1997)
  • "'Baseball Immortal: Derek Jeter: A Career in Quotes" (2015)
  • "'Jackie Robinson in Quotes: The Remarkable Life of Baseball's Most Significant Player" (2016)


  • The American Animated Cartoon: A Critical Anthology (1980), with Gerald Peary
  • Great Golf: 150 Years of Essential Instruction from the Best Players, Teachers, and Writers of All Time (2005), with Allen Richardson
  • Tim McCarver's Diamond Gems (2008), with Tim McCarver and Jim Moskovitz


  1. ^ a b c "Peary, Dannis 1949-". Encyclopedia.com. 2009. Retrieved August 19, 2019.
  2. ^ Miller, Michael (March 3, 2014). "Miller: Not much to be disappointed about on Oscar Sunday". Daily Pilot. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 23, 2019.
  3. ^ a b c Wloszczyna, Susan (April 21, 2016). "SHARE YOUR LOVE: AUTHOR DANNY PEARY ON "CULT MOVIES"". RogerEbert.com. Retrieved August 21, 2019.
  4. ^ "danny-peary Archives". Dan's Papers. Retrieved August 21, 2019.
  5. ^ Brown, Todd (September 12, 2010). "5 Questions with MACHETE MAIDENS UNLEASHED director Mark Hartley". tiffmidnightmadness.blogspot.com. Retrieved August 21, 2019.

External linksEdit