Friday, November 3, 2006



Born Truman Streckfus Persons in New Orleans on September 30, 1924, he was sent to Monroeville, Alabama to be raised by his mother's relatives. As a child he lived a solitary and lonely existence, turning to writing for solace. When he was nine, he moved to New York City to live with his mother and her second husband, Joseph Capote, who adopted him and renamed him Truman GarcĂ­a Capote.

At age seventeen, he dropped out of school and got a job with THE NEW YORKER magazine. Within a few years he was writing regularly for an assortment of publications. Capote's first book, OTHER VOICES, OTHER ROOMS, was published in 1948. With literary success came social celebrity. The young writer was lionised by the high society elite, and was seen at the best parties, clubs, and restaurants.

He also penned or co-wrote screenplays including BEAT THE DEVIL released in 1953 starring Humphrey Bogart, Gina Lollobrigida and Peter Lorre about a quartet of international crooks who are stranded in Italy while their steamer is being repaired. He also had several films produced based on his original writings

BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY'S was published in 1958. The subsequent hit film staring Audrey Hepburn, assured Capote's popularity and place among the upper crust.

Throughout his career, he remained one of America's most controversial and colourful authors, combining literary genius with a penchant for the glittering world of high society. Though he wrote only a handful of books, his prose styling was impeccable, and his insight into the psychology of human desire was extraordinary. His flamboyant and well-documented lifestyle has often overshadowed his gifts as a writer, but over time Capote's work has outlived the celebrity.

Gwyneth Paltrow: singer Peggy Lee
Toby Jones: author Truman Capote
Peter Bogdanovich: Bennett Cerf, publisher and founder of Random House
Sandra Bullock: Capote’s childhood friend and assistant, author Nelle Harper Lee
Jeff Daniels: Alvin Dewey, sheriff of Holcomb, Kansas
Daniel Craig: good-for-nothing drifter, Perry Smith
Lee Pace: Perry’s partner, Richard Hickock

Without the names appearing on the screen the first time we see them, most of us would have no clue as to the identity of these famous personalities. But they were all part of Capote’s world; he knew all the “right people”.

Eventually we get to see what he was most famous for: his ability to put together a good story. And it’s a dandy. Although the subject matter is one of serious reflection, there are lots of funny moments too.

for language, violence and some sexuality.

When Capote and Nell meet Dewey in his office, Capote’s shirt collar is outside his jacket, but when the scene changes it’s nicely tucked in until the scene chages once more and now it’s back out again.

As the suspects are taken from the car, behind them on the other side of the street there is a Dollar General store. Founded in 1939 as J.L. Turner & Son, the company pioneered the dollar store concept in 1955, opening retail stores that sold all items for $1. In 1968, the company launched its initial public stock offering and changed its name to Dollar General, some 9 years after the movie takes place.

Inevitable comparisons will be made to the film entitled Capote that came out a year ago. Suffice it to say they both cover pretty much the same ground but each with a different slant on it and the actors portray a slightly different man. I see no point in trying to decide which is better. They are both good.

No comments: