- Real name
- Michael Altman
- United States
Altman is a movie director/producer/cinematographer and an author (under the pseudonym, Michael Barleycorn).
His father, Robert Altman, also a movie director, commissioned Johnny Mandel to compose a song for the character Private Seidman in the 1970 movie M*A*S*H, stipulating that it should be called "Suicide Is Painless" and that it had to be the "stupidest song ever written". Robert Altman tried writing a lyric himself but couldn't write "anything nearly as stupid as what we need" and gave the task to Mike, then aged 14. Mike wrote the words "in five minutes", to which Mandel later added the melody. In a 1980s interview, Robert Altman said that while he made $70,000 for directing the movie, Mike had earned more than $1 million in royalties for co-writing the song.
Robert Altman Father