Re: RARA-AVIS: Thompson and other novelists who wrote screenplays

From: Dave Zeltserman (
Date: 07 Nov 2004

"The Killing" is a very faithful adaptation of Lionel White's novel, but the dialogue is distinctly Thompson's. Jim Thompson's biography "Sleep with the Devil" breaks down what Thompson + Kubrick both did for this screenplay (Thompson wrote it - Kubrick put it into screenplay format, and put his name on the credits!).

Hell, The Grifters is also a very faithful adaptation of Thompson's book, but that didn't stop Donald Westlake for winning an Oscar for it.

-Dave Z.

--- In, "Al Guthrie" <allanguthrie@u...> wrote:
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Jay Gertzman" <jgertzma@e...>
> To: "rara avis" <>
> > I have been reading about Jim Thompson's collaboration with
> > Kubrick on the latter's 3rd film, _The Killing_. Kubrick said
he wanted
> > Thompson's hard boiled dialogue, but the film clearly shows the
> > novelist's influence in other ways. For example, the well
thought out
> > plan to steal millions from the race track unravels due to
> > people's uncommon obsessions and desires: a wife's disloyalty,
> > husband's masochism, a hit man's bigotry.
> Jay, if you check out the excellent source material, the
novel "Clean
> Break", I think you'll agree that you're attributing to Jim
Thompson what is
> rightfully Lionel White's.
> Al

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This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 07 Nov 2004 EST