Who is Allen Smithee? Well, it is interesting. Allen Smithee is the name of a director...but not just ANY director. He is the angry director. He's the director who has no faith in his film. Confused? Let me explain:
Let's say there's a movie being made in Hollywood. The director is not a new director, but not as respected as, say, Steven Speilberg. Anyway, when he came on board on the movie project, he read the script, agreed to do the movie, and directed it to match the vision that he sees in his own head. However, when producers watch the film or test the film -- and decide they DON'T like the director's vision, the producers have the power to edit it, or refilm parts of it. This might PISS OFF the director who says, "I'm embarrassed. You've changed my film. It is no longer my vision. I don't want my name attatched to the finished product."
The director files a complaint with the powers that be to have his name removed. If they accept, the film will be credited as "Directed by Alan Smithee" (first name spelled different from time to time). It's a ficticious name and it means the director was disappointed with the final print of the film and didn't want his name on it.
THIS HAPPENED TO RICHARD O'BRIEN'S SHOCK TREATMENT!!!
How did I find out? Because I looked up Shock Treatment on internet movie database. In the left collumn of links, I noticed a link called "Movie Connections" (or something of that sort). I clicked on it. Basically it lists any other movie that the movie is connected to. Of course, Rocky Horror Picture Show was listed as a connection, but so was another film...a little documentary called "Who Is Allen Smithee?" I thought to myself, "How odd. Another film that features or connects to Shock Treatment?" After a difficult search at the video store (it's also called "Directed By Alan Smithee" on DVD), I found it. Watching it was really interesting.
Shock Treatment is mentioned and clips shown in various places throughout the film. In fact at the VERY end of the feature, they show clips from Shock Treatment in super clarity high definition, MUCH MUCH better than any video or laser disc version that I've ever seen. It just gave a small glimpse as to what it would look like on DVD, such crisp clean detail. Amazing.
What did they have to say? They said that any time a film's director requests to have his name removed, the film gets put on the Alan Smithee list. However, the film association reviews the request and determines if Alan Smithee's name would grace the screen. In Shock Treatment's case, the director requested to have his name removed with Alan Smithee's name in their place. Of course, we can see in the film's credit that Alan Smithee's name appears NOWHERE. So this means that the film association added the film to the Alan Smithee request list, but did not put the name Alan Smith on the final print.
So this leaves me with one conclusion... Jim Sharmon was disappointed with the final outcome, but they rejected his request to have his name removed. VERY INTERESTING INDEED.