No Reservations

By JENNY HALPER  |  October 18, 2007

Zoe Heller, who wrote Notes on a Scandal, said of the adaptation process ― I think this is the quote ― “the sausages taste good, but you don’t want to know how they’re made.”
[Laughs] By the time I became involved, I was familiar with the process. Terry’s a writer/director, he’s a strong minded guy. There were some things I wish had stayed in but didn’t.

Such as?
Ruth [Dwight’s wife, played by Mira Sorvino] was fuller before. There was one phone conversation between her and Dwight, I just loved the way that conversation went. But it belonged to a slightly different character. Again, I’m really proud of the movie and, as with the novel, you just don’t know how people will react.

Terry mentioned using the Red Sox World Series as a ticking time bomb for the climax.
That was his idea. I think it’s an intelligent device. We updated from 1994 to 2004. Before that there had been no World Series, God knows the Red Sox weren’t even close.

Are you a Red Sox fan?
No. Sorry. I’m a Mets fan, so I deserve your compassion. Terrible season.

I read that your 2002 novel, Claire Marvel, was being optioned. Are you working on that?
It was not optioned; I was talking to someone about that in LA last week. But right now I’m doing this Denzel Washington project, based on a true story. Dana Kennedy is a reporter for the Times and she wrote a piece on the front page last year called “From a Father to a Son in Appreciation.” It was about her fiancé who had been killed in Iraq. He was a soldier there, leaving their seven-month-old son a two hundred page journal about how to grow up without him. I’m going to have to do a comedy one of these years. My next novel is picking up Dwight’s story fifteen years later.

Have you started it yet?
No. I can’t wait.

The film version of Reservation Road opens on October 19th. The Commoner will be in bookstores in January.

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