Saturday, July 16, 2016

Sharon Potts's "Someone Must Die"

Sharon Potts is the award-winning, critically acclaimed author of five psychological thrillers, including In Their Blood—winner of the Benjamin Franklin Award and recipient of a starred review in Publishers Weekly, and the recently released The Other Traitor. A former CPA, corporate executive, and entrepreneur, Potts has served as treasurer of the national board of Mystery Writers of America, as well as president of that organization’s Florida chapter. She has also co-chaired SleuthFest, a national writers’ conference. Potts lives in Miami Beach with her husband and a spirited Australian shepherd named Gidget.

Here is Potts’s unusual take on the casting of an adaptation of her new novel, Someone Must Die:
An Interview with Alfred Hitchcock

I: Mr. Hitchcock, welcome back. You’re looking well, though perhaps a bit stiffer than the last time we met.

AH: Good evening. Stiff, you say? My young sir, you should try digging yourself out of a grave.

I: Um, yes, well. I appreciate you speaking to us about your latest project, Mr. Hitchcock. We’ve heard rumors that you’ve agreed to produce and direct a new movie based on Sharon Potts’s latest novel Someone Must Die.

AH: The rumors are indeed true. Potts’s new suspense novel is about how the past haunts the present, a theme I find particularly intriguing. The backdrop for Someone Must Die is the college revolutionary period of the late sixties, a volatile time that’s been on my movie-project bucket list. But the story is very much a present-day psychological thriller about a young woman who becomes an inadvertent victim of her parents’ activities during the sixties.

I: Can you give us a brief overview of the plot?

AH: Certainly. When her six-year-old nephew is abducted from a neighborhood carnival, Aubrey Lynd discovers long-buried secrets about her parents’ past that force her to make impossible choices.

I: I imagine there’s a great deal of tension and conflict between Aubrey and her parents.

AH: You are quite right. Aubrey has avoided confrontation with her parents her entire life. Now, with her nephew’s life at stake, she must ask questions that no one wants to answer. But the more Aubrey digs, the more she realizes how little she knows who her parents really are and what they’re capable of.

I: Your previous productions of Sharon Potts’s novels—In Their Blood, Someone’s Watching, and The Devil’s Madonna were box office successes featuring several renowned actors. May I ask whom you are considering for Someone Must Die?

AH: I am fortunate in that I have access to many fine actors, those still living and many who once gave the performances of their lives, but have since gone underground, so to speak. And so, I am thrilled to announce that Audrey Hepburn (as she was in Wait Until Dark) has agreed to play Aubrey Lynd. In addition, given that Someone Must Die takes place in both the past and present, I have chosen actors who can play both their younger and their mature selves. Peter O’Toole will be taking on the role of Aubrey’s father when he was the young ‘Lawrence of Columbia’ (in a reprise of Lawrence of Arabia) as well as the older, desperate Larry Lynd. Katherine Ross (The Graduate) will play Diana as a young college student, and will also use the paranoia she exhibited so beautifully in The Stepford Wives, as she matures into Aubrey’s mother.

I: That sounds like a fantastic cast, Mr. Hitchcock. One final question. I understand that the author, Sharon Potts, had a difficult decision to make regarding the ending of Someone Must Die. Will the movie stay true to the book in that regard?

AH: Absolutely. I am reassured by what Publishers Weekly had to say: Aubrey realizes that the only way to save her nephew is to uncover the truth about her parents’ past. In the end, Aubrey faces a tough ethical decision. Readers will applaud her courage. And, my young sir, I intend to make certain the audience will applaud my movie. I enjoy applause.

I: Thank you for your time, Mr. Hitchcock.

AH: Thank you and good evening.
Learn more about the book and author at Sharon Potts's website.

My Book, The Movie: In Their Blood.

--Marshal Zeringue