Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Books Into Films: Announced in the Trades, Part 2

A few months back, our friend William Wilson of Video Junkie Strikes Back from Beyond the Grave sent us the following Variety ads as a response to our first installment of Books Into Films: Announced in the Trades.

In the May 1984 Cannes Film Festival issue of Variety, United Film Distribution Company (UFDC) hyped a film adaptation of Felice Picano's 1975 thriller Eyes, starring Susan Sarandon. On the same page was an ad for a film adaptation of Susan Isaacs’ Compromising Positions, also starring Sarandon. EYES was never made, but UFDC honcho Salah M. Hassanein received executive producer on Frank Perry’s COMPROMISING POSITIONS (1985), produced for Paramount with Sarandon in the lead.

The classic film noir DETOUR (1945), starring Tom Neal and Ann Savage, was adapted by Martin M. Goldsmith from his own 1939 novel. A remake by Carl Shenkel was announced in the October 19, 1992 issue of Variety, but Shenkel’s project never came to fruition. However, a different adaptation of Goldsmith’s book the same year – written, produced and directed by Wade Williams and starring Tom Neal, Jr. (in the role his father played almost a half century earlier) – was produced the same year!

British author David Ambrose wrote the screenplays for such films as THE FIFTH MUSKETEER (1979), THE FINAL COUNTDOWN (1980) and D.A.R.Y.L. (1985), but never had much luck with film adaptations of his novels. Above is an ad from Armada Productions that advertises movies based on two of Ambrose’s novels, The Man Who Turned into Himself and Superstition, published in 1993 and 1997, respectively. Neither film was produced. (Variety date: May 6, 1996)

Finally, in the 1996 MIFED Film Market issue of Variety (October 21-27), Imperial Entertainment and producer Steve Perry hyped an adaptation of James Ellroy's 1982 novel Clandestine, but that too was never made.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Book Ad of the Week: THE FAN CLUB (1974)

June 6, 1974

The Fan Club
by Irving Wallace
Simon and Schuster, 1974

Raquel Welch and a then-unknown Lynda Carter were both considered for the lead in the movie adaptation of Irving Wallace's bestseller, but the Lawrence Gordon production was never made.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Book Ad of the Week: MISTER MOSES (1961)

May 2, 1961

Mister Moses
by Max Catto
William Morrow & Co., 1961

Max Catto's Mister Moses became the 1965 film of the same name, directed by Ronald Neame and starring Robert Mitchum, Carroll Baker, Ian Bannen, Alexander Knox, and Raymond St. Jacques. Other films based on Catto's novels include TRAPEZE (1956), FIRE DOWN BELOW (1957), SEVEN THIEVES (1960), THE DEVIL AT 4 O'CLOCK (1961) and MURPHY'S WAR (1971).

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Book Ad of the Week: A DANDY IN ASPIC (1967)

October 15, 1967

A Dandy in Aspic
by Derek Marlowe
G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1966

Derek Marlowe's espionage thriller became the movie A DANDY IN ASPIC (1968), starring Laurence Harvey, Tom Courtenay, Mia Farrow, Harry Andrews, Peter Cook, Lionel Stander, Per Oscarsson, and Calvin Lockhart, with music by Quincy Jones. Producer-director Anthony Mann suffered a fatal heart attack on location in Berlin on April 29, 1967 and the film was completed by Harvey.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Book Ad of the Week: SONS (1969)

July 13, 1979

by Evan Hunter
Doubleday, 1969

Evan Hunter a.k.a. Ed McBain (real name: Salvatore Lombino) wrote a number of screenplays -- including two for Alfred Hithcock -- and saw many of his novels adapted into movies, beginning with BLACKBOARD JUNGLE in 1955, but a major motion picture of his 1969 novel Sons was never produced.