Saturday, April 14, 2018

Podcast: Interview with Robert Leuci (1985)

NYPD detective and novelist Robert Leuci, aka "Prince of the City." (Photo by Don Hogan Charles/New York Times)

From 1981 to 1989, I was assistant producer and co-host of the radio show On the Arts, at CJRT-FM (today Jazz 91.1) in Toronto. With the late Tom Fulton, who was the show's prime host and producer, we did a half-hour interview program where we talked to writers and artists from all fields. In 1985, I sat down with former New York City police detective and novelist Robert "Bob" Leuci.

A police officer for the NYPD (working alongside officers like Frank Serpico), Leuci rose to national attention after becoming an informer for widespread investigation into police corruption in 1971. His controversial role in that investigation was documented in Robert Daley's 1978 book Prince of the City, which was later adapted into Sidney Lumet's 1981 film of the same name. (In the film, Treat Williams plays a fictionalized version of Leuci.) At the time of our conversation, Leuci had retired from the NYPD and had just published his first novel, Doyle's Disciples. He would publish seven more novels in the years to come, as well as a critically acclaimed 2004 memoir, All the Centurions, which chronicled his two decades as a narcotics detective. Robert Leuci passed away in 2015 at the age of 75.

– Kevin Courrier

Here is the full interview with Robert Leuci as it aired on CJRT-FM in 1985.

Kevin Courrier is a freelance writer/broadcaster, film critic and author (Dangerous Kitchen: The Subversive World of Zappa, Randy Newman's American Dreams33 1/3 Captain Beefheart's Trout Mask Replica, Artificial Paradise: The Dark Side of The Beatles Utopian Dream). Courrier teaches part-time film courses to seniors through the LIFE Institute at Ryerson University in Toronto and other venues. His forthcoming book is Talking Out of Turn: A Collection of Reviews, Interviews and Remembrances currently being assembled on Blogger. 

Tom Fulton was the host and producer of On the Arts for CJRT-FM in Toronto for 23 years, beginning in 1975.

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