Monday, January 13, 2014

Alex Bledsoe's "He Drank, and Saw the Spider"

Alex Bledsoe grew up in west Tennessee an hour north of Graceland (home of Elvis) and twenty minutes from Nutbush (birthplace of Tina Turner). He has been a reporter, editor, photographer and door-to-door vacuum cleaner salesman. He now lives in a Wisconsin town famous for trolls.

Here Bledsoe dreamcasts an adaptation of his new novel, He Drank, and Saw the Spider:
In the past, I’ve mentioned that the ideal casting for Eddie LaCrosse, hero of He Drank, and Saw the Spider (and four preceding novels), would be Alien-era Tom Skerritt. Unfortunately, that isn’t possible. Over the years people have suggested many actors, from the obvious (Sean Bean, who doesn’t really seem to have the sense of humor for it) to the inexplicable (Keanu Reeves? Really?).

But as luck would have it, I recently stumbled across the perfect contemporary actor in an absolutely terrible movie.

I’d seen Jeffrey Dean Morgan before, most notably as The Comedian in Watchmen. But while watching the 2012 horror movie The Possession, I realized he would be perfect for Eddie. He looks to be about the right age, he’s got an easy-going manner, and most importantly he comes across as a grown man. So many actors today, even the ones in their 30s and 40s, seem to be mere boys. And there’s an innate intelligence to Morgan that shines through even when he’s mired in drek like The Possession.

But who to play his girlfriend, the level-headed and acid-tongued Liz Dumont? In this novel in particular, their banter is a big part of the fun. I’ve always depicted her as Eddie’s contemporary, which rules out any of the interchangeable “actresses” under 30 who currently dominate screens. It would need to be someone with great comic timing, mature yet sexy, and who could play straight through a fair bit of absurdity. In a perfect world, then, I’d cast Julie Bowen, Claire on the sitcom Modern Family.
Learn more about the book and author at Alex Bledsoe's website and blog.

Writers Read: Alex Bledsoe.

--Marshal Zeringue