John Cocchi Missing

John Cocchi

John Cocchi

By James H. Burns: Hopefully, by now, this story has a happy ending.

But several of John’s friends are only now discovering the news that he went missing last month.

And while I hope to have better news within the next day — time, in this type of instance, can be crucial, if John’s still lost.

Cocchi has been one of the leading film history researchers for decades. If he never wrote extensively about fantasy and science fiction films, he is thanked in many (if not most!) of the books on the genre that appeared in the 1960s and 1970s.

John contributed to Castle of Frankenstein, as well as several leading mainstream film journals.

A contemporary, and friend, of Leonard Maltin’s and Joe Franklin’s, Cocchi was a frequent presence at movie buff conventions. (As a friend of the late Chris Steinbrunner’s, John probably also contributed to several science fiction and comic book convention film programs, that Chris helped program.)

I don’t believe Cocchi ever wrote for any of the other science fiction film magazines, but he was a boon pal or acquaintance of all the 1970s and 1980s folk who did, David Bartholomew, Dan Scaperotti, myself, Steve Swires, Tom Weaver…

(He also acted in the 1960s serial homage, Captain Celluloid…)

Just within the last few  years, John began writing some terrific articles again, for Classic Images.

We’d talk every few months, or so, and he seemed relatively happy. The last time I saw him was at a Raquel Welch film tribute event at Lincoln Center.

I hope to see him again.

Update 05/20/2014: Corrected to Classic Images the title running Cocchi’s more recent articles, per Jim’s comment.

4 thoughts on “John Cocchi Missing

  1. I just spoke with John’s brother, and sadly, there is still no news.

    He left his apartment with his wallet, and no one has heard from him since.

    Anyone with any information, or an old friend who’d like to be in touch with the family, can email at:

  2. I should have, of course, written “CLASSIC IMAGES” magazine/newspaper, rather than THE BIG REEL.

  3. Thanks for writing about this. I’d heard about John’s disappearance a few weeks ago and am saddened by this news. John wrote for years for BOX OFFICE magazine, wrote introductions for Bob Dorian when he was hosting AMC (when thy showed classic movies) and wrote two books of his own, SECOND FEATURE (for Citadel Press, about b-movies, including serials, horror and sci-fi) and THE WESTERNS: A PICTURE QUIZ BOOK (for Dover). I ran into him on a street in New York a year ago and we had a great conversation at a coffee shop. We corresponded since… I don’t know what happened.

    John was IMDB personified years before IMDB existed. He knows everything about classic Hollywood movies. I hope he emerges from this unharmed.

  4. Those who are reading this post more recently may be unaware that Cocchi passed away — my obituary is here.

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