Posts Tagged ‘JFK Assassination’

Hammer on Screen

Tuesday, October 23rd, 2012

It’s finally official: Warner Bros plans to bring Mike Hammer back to the screen. Read about it here.

The Deadline story got picked up everywhere, though some blogs did not just re-fry the story, but did an actual article/commentary, like this somewhat offbeat one.

There seems to be an assumption that I, THE JURY will be the first film (note the illos for the original Deadline piece). But the Warners contract excludes the following Hammer novels: I, THE JURY; MY GUN IS QUICK; KISS ME, DEADLY; and THE GIRL HUNTERS, all of which have already been made into films (I, THE JURY twice). The books that the film will draw upon are: ONE LONELY NIGHT, THE BIG KILL, THE SNAKE, THE TWISTED THING, THE BODY LOVERS, SURVIVAL…ZERO!, THE KILLING MAN, BLACK ALLEY, THE GOLIATH BONE, THE BIG BANG, KISS HER GOODBYE, LADY, GO DIE!, COMPLEX 90 and KING OF THE WEEDS. I believe the posthumous short stories are also included. The screenplay may draw upon one of the novels specifically, or it may be a new story using elements from a number of them. I will almost certainly not be given the opportunity to write a screenplay (the first one for sure), but I will be consulting and am officially an exec producer, as is Jane Spillane. Whether the film will be contemporary or period, I don’t know. I prefer period, but unlike some, I feel contemporary can work.

Here’s an interesting TARGET LANCER review from an Australian writer not familiar with the JFK assassination, except superficially.

Here’s another overseas view of Heller, this time a BYE BYE, BABY review from the excellent critic, Mike Carlson.

Here’s a particularly nice TRUE DETECTIVE review that came in.

And out of the blue, here’s a review of the graphic novel ROAD TO PERDITION 2: ON THE ROAD (a nice one!).

I continue to be burrowed in on ASK NOT. It’s a tough book, and my head swims with research. I am breaking lots of rules with this one, but since I invented this particular game, I have no guilt. I had hoped to be done by election day, because Barb and I are planning to spend that day working out of my presidential candidate’s local office, making phone calls and driving people to the polls. But it’s probably going to take me till mid-November. Longer if the wrong guy wins and I get really, really depressed.


Boucher Con Sked and More

Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012

I am frantically working to get two Heller chapters done (I’m in the middle of the first of the two) before leaving for Bouchercon on Thursday morning.

Here’s our Bouchercon schedule:

Barb’s panel (she is the moderator) is at 9.m. Friday. It’s about geriatric crime fighters: MYSTERY MATURES.

MAC’s panel (not moderating) (also not moderate) is at 11:30 a.m., also on Friday: MANFICTION (not my fault).

No room numbers, but if you’re attending, it won’t be tough to find us.

There is a new e-book from Top Suspense, WRITING CRIME FICTION, with chapters by all the members on various topics. Mine is on writing Historical Fiction. It just came out today, so snag it:

And here’s a terrific advance review of TARGET LANCER from that fine crime writer, Bill Crider.

Check out the Big Thrill’s TARGET LANCER write-up here.

And this is a really cool, smart review of the new Mike Hammer short story, “Skin.”

Finally, this nice interview with my Hard Case editor, Charles Ardai, discusses the re-discovery of the final James M. Cain novel, the recently pubbed THE COCKTAIL WAITRESS. Charles is kind enough to mention my role in bringing this important dark novel to the light.


Heller in Progress; Notes on Dredd 3D & The Raid

Tuesday, September 25th, 2012

Updates for the next four to six weeks will be on the brief side, mostly likely, because I am burrowed in on the new Heller, ASK NOT. I will be going to Bouchercon before long, and as much as I look forward to it, I don’t relish the four-day interruption. I really keep my head in a novel while I’m doing it, and don’t like to have the flow disrupted. I tend to be spacey as hell (Barb does most of the driving) and a distracted danger to others. A Heller project is the most intensive of anything I do, because of the combination of character concerns and the voluminous research that I continue reading even during the writing stage. Later this week, for example, I need to write a chapter with a central if obscure historical figure (Texas Ranger Clint Peoples), and the book I ordered about him two weeks ago hasn’t arrived yet. What do I do? Skip that chapter and write it later? These are the kind of obstacles I face, writing a Heller.

The strong advance reviews for TARGET LANCER continue to roll in. Check this one out.

And the recent one-day Kindle sale of 10 Heller novels for $1.99 prompted some kind words about the series. This was one is particularly nice.

Nate and Abby visited us over the weekend – they had to: we kidnapped their dog Toaster after the wedding two weeks ago – and we had a great time going to restaurants and watching movies. Specifically, we watched two movies that were very similar. THE RAID: REDEMPTION (2011) and DREDD 3D (2012). The former is an Indonesian production with a British director, and is one of the wildest and most effective action films I’ve ever seen. The latter is (I think) a British/South African production, based on the famous UK comic book series “Judge Dredd.” It is also terrific, and in many respects even better – a sort of urban ROAD WARRIOR (there’s a pun in there, since Karl Urban plays Dredd). DREDD makes use of 3D better than any live-action action film I can think of. The odd thing is that these two films have nearly identical plots and a number of strikingly similar scenes. Set-up is a raid on a gang-controlled slum apartment highrise where a big-shot gangster is manufacturing drugs, keeping the entire building under video surveillance; trapped within, the law-enforcement raiders must fight their way up and back down against crazy odds. DREDD 3D is nominally futuristic, but otherwise it’s the same premise. Numerous scenes appear to have been lifted from one film to the other. But here’s the truly odd thing: they were shot more or less simultaneously (DREDD began a few months prior). Whatever the case, both are highly recommended (RAID on home video, DREDD 3D in the theaters now – hurry for the latter, because its box-office is thus far lack luster).