Rice twice collaborated with future Warhol star Taylor Mead, including Rice's first and best-known film, The Flower Thief (1960). Created in 1959 for less than $1,000, it used World War II aerial gunnery 16mm film cartridges donated to Rice by Hollywood producer Sam Katzman. In 1962, it was seen by a large New York audience as a selection of Amos Vogel's Cinema 16. Rice commented on his inventive approach:
CHUMLUM, 1964, 23 mins.
Rice also worked with underground filmmaker Jack Smith, who appears in Queen of Sheba Meets the Atom Man with Taylor Mead, and in Chumlum. Rice was inspired to make Chumlum while working with Smith on the props for Smith's Normal Love. Chumlum also stars Mario Montez, who appeared in both of Smith's films, as well as several of Andy Warhol's films. Warhol superstar Gerard Malanga also has a role in Chumlum.
Rice's films can still be rented from the Filmmaker's Cooperative. His work paved the way for other experimental filmmakers of the 1960s, including the Kuchar brothers. All but forgotten today, Rice was a major figure of the New American Cinema, and his deeply personal, anarchic films are the work of a true cinematic visionary.