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Monster: Living Off the Big Screen

Monster: Living Off the Big Screen
Your Price: $20.00 CDN
Author: John Gregory Dunne
Publisher: Vintage
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 224
Pub. Date: 1998
ISBN-10: 037575024X
ISBN-13: 9780375750243

About the Book:

John Gregory Dunne — journalist, novelist, and screenwriter — gives you an intimate, accurate account of Hollywood, offering a riveting expose of life and work in the movie industry.

In Hollywood, screenwriters are a curse to be borne, and beating up on them is an industry blood sport. But in this ferociously funny and accurate account of life on the Hollywood food chain, it's a screenwriter who gets the last murderous laugh. That may be because the writer is John Gregory Dunne, who has written screenplays, along with novels and non-fiction, for thirty years.

In 1988 Dunne and his wife, Joan Didion, were asked to write a screenplay about the dark and complicated life of the late TV anchorwoman Jessica Savitch. Eight years and twenty-seven drafts later, this script was made into the fairy tale Up Close and Personal starring Robert Redford and Michelle Pfeiffer — a "feel good" movie nothing like the grim narrative Dunne and Didion first developed. Dunne relates the saga of this transformation with a wicked eye and perfect pitch for the absurdities and savage infighting of the film business. Detailing the meetings, rewrites, fights, firings, and distractions attendant to the making of a single picture, Monster offers a revealing look at film-making — from the first script meetings to the finished products — illuminating the process with sagacity and raucous wit.

What people say:

"Monster offers a crash course in getting a script through the hazards of the present-day studio system." — New York Times Book Review

"Tells more of the experience of writing for Hollywood than any other book ever written." — Michael Crichton

"A savvy, acidly funny book that is must reading on the subject of consensus Hollywood movie making." — The New York Times

About the Author:

John Gregory Dunne wrote five novels, seven works of nonfiction, and two books that look at Hollywood, The Studio and Monster. Born in West Hartford, Connecticut, in 1932, he graduated from Princeton in 1954. He collaborated with his wife, the writer Joan Didion, on many screenplays. John Gregory Dunne died in December 2003.