Many may not know or remember her name, but Spanish Harlem-born author May Pang is a fascinating subject of an upcoming documentary. The Lost Weekend: A Love Story will make its debut at the Tribeca Film Festival for a sold-out show on June 10, 2022. Even though she has written two books, 1983’s Loving John: The Untold Story and 2008’s Instamatic Karma: Photographs by John Lennon, Pang has been hesitant about participating in a documentary until now. In 1972, 22-year-old Pang boldly entered Apple’s New York offices, lied about her ability to type, and secured a job. Now 71-years-old, Pang explained that music was her passion, and she figured answering the phone was easy enough.
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Unbeknownst to her at the time, things would soon take a dramatic change. Yoko Ono would eventually pluck Pang from her job at Apple to serve as her and Lennon’s assistant, but it wouldn’t end there. According to Pang, Yoko Ono told her that she was going to leave the Imagine singer and that she should know that John was interested in her. Pang said she wasn’t interested.
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The documentary captures the whirlwind 18-month-long affair between Lennon and Pang during what became known as “the lost weekend” when the two-headed to Los Angeles for Lennon’s drunken escapades with pals Alice Cooper, Micky Dolenz, Ringo Starr, Harry Nilsson, and Keith Moon, collectively known as the Hollywood Vampires. The group gathered at their upstairs hangout spot at the Rainbow Bar & Grill on Sunset Boulevard. According to Pang:
“Yes, Yoko did approach me, and I thought it was insane. I told her I wasn’t interested at all. They were having problems in their marriage; they actually weren’t talking to each other. But John spontaneously decided to go to L.A. on his own and asked me to go with him. Yoko wasn’t even aware we had gone until after we left. I felt awful, and I told John that. Yoko was calling 10-15 times a day wanting to know what was going on. Little did I know, she was cheating on him at the same time. I had no idea, and neither did John. We found out together”
Pang, who says she is not proud of being the “other woman,” remembers “the lost weekend” as anything but lost and is proud of reuniting John with his son Julian, who speaks glowingly of May in his on-camera appearance.
After her split from Lennon, Pang was married to David Bowie producer Tony Visconti from 1989 to 2000. The couple share two adult children. As for keepsakes such as doodles, drawings and photographs Lennon left behind, Pang says they’re all tucked away in a safety deposit box.