Hello, Jana here,
David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, framers and writers of the award winning series ‘Game of Thrones‘ have set their sites on a new project. Since converting George R.R. Martin’s novel into one of the most popular and award winning series, they have had little time for anything else. The demands of writing and executive producing GoT have left little time for other projects. With the fourth season premiering last Sunday, the pair have set their sites on another novel they are planning to convert to another media. This time, they are looking at a feature film, and the book they will be working from is ‘Dirty White Boys‘ from Stephen Hunter. Hunter also wrote ‘Point of Impact‘, the book that was turned into 2007’s ‘Shooter‘.
The duo is planning to write, direct and produce their adaptation about three violent escaped convicts and the lawman who attempts to track them down. This will be their first film venture together and first for Weiss. Benioff has more experience with credits in writing 2004’s ‘Troy‘ and 2009’s ‘X-Men’s Origins: Wolverine‘.
They said the idea came to them when they were talking with writer friends. “We’re sitting around bullsh*tting and we started talking about lines we were jealous of before it came around to the familiar topic of greatest opening lines in novels,” Benioff said. “Our friend Scott Frank brought up the opening line of ‘Dirty White Boys‘. To be honest, I’d never hear of the book before, even though we’d heard of Stephen Hunter’s sniper series. Scott mentioned that opening line from ‘Dirty White Boys‘, and it made me go out and buy the book, and Dan bought the book, and then we got past that first line and just fell in love with it.” Said Weiss: “It does grab you, the first line, and what keeps you is that the characters are so well drawn, really charismatic and awful people, so flawed. I don’t think you’ll be able to print the first line, because it’s got prison-soaked racism and is just really out there.” He’s right that the line is packed full of ugly, but I couldn’t resist looking it up, so here’s the line: “Three men at McAlester State Penitentiary had larger penises than Lamar Pye, but all were black and therefore, by Lamar’s own figuring, hardly human at all.”
Pyle, who right after this line engages in extremely violent preventive measures to thwart a rape attempt by the inmates he’s describing, is the Alpha Male leader of the trio of escapees that includes his deformed brother and Richard, an artistically gifted inmate who tags along because he won’t survive without Lamar’s protection. They are tracked by Bud Pewtie, a flawed state trooper.
“There is that parallel, but you have to fall in love with these characters,” Benioff said. “I’m a huge fan of Cormac McCarthy and the film adaptation, but that villain is the devil incarnate. Here, the villains do horrible things, but you feel for them. For Dan and I, we started writing Game Of Thrones in 2006, and this book could not be more different, a contemporary thriller, but the characters are so well drawn that you become attached to them, good or bad, and you want to follow them.”
“This really is a 52-week a year job, so it’s not like we’re out there actively looking. But after Scott recommended it, the book sinks its claws into you, and you’re stuck,” Weiss said. “You have to let it take you where it’s going to take you and we look forward to seeing where this one is going to take us.”
“Game Of Thrones was too big a canvas for a movie, but Dirty White Boys is like a great old Western, there’s so much compression and it’s so pressurized, it demands to be told in one sitting,” Benioff said. “We’ve been able to work without stars, but here, there are two big star roles that are great. If we’d to compress the storytelling in Game Of Thrones, we’d have just mutilated the book.”
With their adaptation work speaking for themselves with GoT, I think it’s safe to say, their next project is already smelling like a winner.