Despite a bit of a break, I’m still plugging away on Catcher. The next section wanders into some depressing territory that’s a bit hard to convey on-screen. There’s a lot of wandering around, indecision, memories, etc., which is a big point of the book and illustrates Holden’s state of mind, but translating this to the screen can be a challenge.
When I left off with Act II, Part II, Holden had just had the uncomfortable encounter with the young prostitute, Sunny. He sent her away without having sex with her but paid her the $5 her pimp, Maurice, said was the price of “a throw.” I really don’t like that terminology. Quite icky.
Continue reading Catcher In The Rye, Act II, Part III
When we last left our hero, he was in the Lavender Room at the Edmont Hotel. The three ugly ladies from Seattle who he’d been dancing and drinking with got up to leave because they wanted to get up early to catch the first show at Radio City Music Hall, which depressed Holden to no end.
INT. HOTEL LOBBY – NIGHT
Holden sits on a worn, “vomity-looking” chair in the hotel lobby. He’s loosened his tie, undone some shirt buttons and stares out into space, one leg thrown over the arm of the chair.
Next to him, a JANITOR vacuums the lobby rug, standing in one place and only getting what he can reach at arm’s length.
EXT. FRONT YARD – DAY (FLASHBACK)
A Doberman pinscher squats to pee on an immaculate green lawn in front of a well-kept house.
MRS. CAULFIELD, 43, slender with dark hair, opens the front door of the house and steps onto the porch.
MRS. CAULFIELD: Shoo! Get out of here! Go on!
The dog runs off. Mrs. Caulfield comes down the front walk and stands, hands on her hips, staring at the house next door.
Continue reading Catcher In The Rye: Act II, Part 2
A tree branch breaking off and falling into our yard, taking our cable/Internet line with it during Saturday’s *STORM*, has majorly been cramping my style this week and also putting me horribly behind on my Catcher In The Rye project. God, I hope my agent doesn’t get pissed at me. Har har har. All I’ve really had time for is making fun of other people’s tweets, which is a sick hobby.
Another thing that’s been happening as I work on this is that I find myself caring about it quite a bit and actually… laboring over it. I guess that’s just me and my pesky work ethic. But seriously, folks… I kind of want to see this movie someday. Not MY script just… if someone who knew what they were doing adapted Catcher, I would see it. I mean, if it was taken on as a labor of love and someone really spent the time and then the studio didn’t cast Justin Beiber or Bieber or whatever that moppet’s name is.
So here is the first part of Act II, which will be broken into several partsÂ because Act II, obviously, is long and there is only so much time one can spend at the neighborhood cafe, nursing a tea, wishing to hell Comcast would get out and fix the cable.
Continue reading “Catcher In The Rye” Act II, Part 1
I’m getting started with the adaptation. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, please read this first.
Opening scene: Arguably the most important scene in a film. Sets the mood, the tone, first impression. I’m a big believer in not having the first scene of a film be a “throwaway” scene. You know what bugs me? Movies that open with someone waking up to an alarm clock going off and then going through their morning routine, making the kids breakfast, getting the newspaper and all that jazz. YAWN. But I’m already digressing.
Here is the opening sequence, starting on Thomsen Hill at Pencey Prep in Agerstown, Pennsylvania.
Continue reading “Catcher In The Rye,” Act I
When J.D. Salinger died earlier this year, I felt ambivalent, despite the fact that I’d nearly worshiped him in high school as one of the only writers out there who “got” what it was like to be a smart and disillusioned teen. Somewhere along the line, I either stopped being a smart, disillusioned teen or realized that everyone believed themselves to be smart and disillusioned and so rejected it in favor of some other modus operandi.
Along the way, I also found out more about J.D. Salinger – his reclusive lifestyle, refusal to publish more novels, his dabbling in everything from Dianetics, homeopathy and macrobiotics to urine therapy – and I found it a big turn-off. In 1999, I read Joyce Maynard’s memoir At Home In The World, which painted a picture of a pathetic old man with high ideals cloistered away in a compound. This was not my hero. This was a mere mortal who was as confused about life as the rest of us.
Continue reading The Big If… “The Catcher In The Rye” Screenplay