Does anyone else have fond memories of the era of movie novelizations? Back in the nineties, Quebec briefly had a run where movies slapped with a 16+ rating were off-limits to anyone under-age, even if they were with their parents. Thus, I was barred from seeing a few classics of my generation in theaters – namely CLIFFHANGER and ERASER. The only way I was able to experience these films was through novelizations, where the screenplays were turned into paperback novels. So, for awhile, I was a novelization fiend. In fact, even when I could see the movies I’d still read the novelization. While most arguably couldn’t hold a candle to their big-screen counterparts, some were arguably better. One such case was THE PHANTOM with Billy Zane. I remember missing the film in theaters because it opened and closed in about a week, but the novelization was amazing. The film – well not so much. I also remember the book of LAST ACTION HERO being a lot more heartfelt than the finished film.
According to Deadline, none other than Quentin Tarantino himself is set to bring the novelization back in vogue, with him penning a book version of ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD, which is set for release via HarperCollins this summer. The novel is part of a two-book deal QT inked with the publisher, with the second book called “Cinema Speculation”, which is set to be a deep dive into the films of the seventies.
The folks at Deadline apparently got an early look at Tarantino’s novelization of ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD, and have revealed that it fills in a lot of extra details, taking more time to explore, among other things, Rick Dalton’s career in Italian B-movies, with one plot point being his dubbing by “Speed Racer” voice artist Peter Fernandez in “Kill Me Quick Ringo, Said the Gringo”.
I can’t wait to read this for myself, but while we’re on the subject, what are your favorite novelizations? Talkback below!