cloudy.png
Sunday October 25th, 2020 12:35PM

Ethan Hawke tapes audio edition of acclaimed novel 'Gilead'

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

NEW YORK (AP) — When she learned that Ethan Hawke was working on a special audio edition of her acclaimed novel “Gilead,” Marilynne Robinson's response was to get a better idea of who he was.

“I can't say I was familiar with his voice,” Robinson said of the four-time Oscar nominee whose films include “Before Sunrise,” “Reality Bites” and “Boyhood.” But when Robinson watched Hawke star as a troubled priest in Paul Schrader's “First Reformed" she felt confident he could inhabit the life of an aging Iowa minister in the 1950s, one whom Robinson describes as “a man deep in conversation with himself.”

“He (Hawke) speaks in a sort of American way that is well within the range of what I understand my character to be speaking," she said.

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize in 2005, ”Gilead” is the first of four Robinson novels set in a rural Iowa community in the 1950s. It’s narrated by the dying Rev. John Ames, a Congregationalist pastor who reflects on his family history and the suffering and transcendence he has known in this “poor perishable world.” The book’s many admirers include former President Barack Obama, who has spoken of reading “Gilead” while campaigning in Iowa.

Hawke has recorded an abridged narrative of “Gilead” that was commissioned by Manhattan's 92nd Street Y and can he heard Oct. 19-29 via www.92y.org/gilead. Bernard Schwartz, who directs the Y's Unterberg Poetry Center, said in a statement that he thought Hawke was an ideal narrator.

“In ‘Gilead,’ the Reverend John Ames contemplates ‘grace as a sort of ecstatic fire that takes things down to essentials,'" he said. "I read that and think of Ethan Hawke’s voice. ‘Gilead' is a great American novel, and Ethan Hawke is a great American actor."

In a recent email, Hawke remembered his first encounter with Robinson, when she read from “Gilead” at Shakespeare and Company in Paris, as a “near Holy experience.”

"Her humility as a person, and the depth of her writing, was inspiring — so I started reading," he explained.

Hawke's roles have ranged from the born skeptics of “Reality Bites” and “Before Sunrise” to the violently committed John Brown, the 19th century abolitionist whom he plays in the Showtime adaptation of James McBride's prize-winning novel “The Good Lord Bird.” The Rev. Ames, as much seeker in his own way as some of Hawke's more secular characters, is in his “wheelhouse,” the actor says.

“If anyone has the Chutzpah to make it a film, I hope they cast me.”

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Entertainment
© Copyright 2020 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Ethan Hawke tapes audio edition of acclaimed novel 'Gilead'
Ethan Hawke's movie characters have ranged from the young skeptics of “Reality Bites” and “Before Sunrise” to the fanatically committed abolitionist John Brown in “The Good Lord Bird.”
9:59AM ( 9 minutes ago )
Sen. Josh Hawley writing book: 'The Tyranny of Big Tech.'
Sen. Josh Hawley is working on a book about one of the Missouri Republican’s ongoing targets
9:49AM ( 18 minutes ago )
US stocks head higher at the end of another bumpy week
Stocks are opening higher on Wall Street, putting the market on track to end a choppy week of trading slightly higher
9:42AM ( 25 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
TV gives viewers a split-screen comparison of Trump, Biden
Instead of the expected debate between President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden, television viewers were left Thursday with what ABC’s David Muir called “split-screen America.”
10:49PM ( 11 hours ago )
The Latest: Trump claims mask wearers infected all the time
President Donald Trump says, without evidence, that people who wear face masks are getting infected with the coronavirus “all the time.”
8:31PM ( 13 hours ago )
New book will include final thoughts from Justice Ginsburg
Some final thoughts from Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and some previously unreleased materials have been gathered by one of her former clerks and will appear in a book coming out in March
6:57PM ( 15 hours ago )
AP Entertainment
Sen. Josh Hawley writing book: 'The Tyranny of Big Tech.'
Sen. Josh Hawley is working on a book about one of the Missouri Republican’s ongoing targets
9:49AM ( 19 minutes ago )
US stocks head higher at the end of another bumpy week
Stocks are opening higher on Wall Street, putting the market on track to end a choppy week of trading slightly higher
9:42AM ( 25 minutes ago )
Putin proposes yearlong extension of nuclear pact with US
Russian President Vladimir Putin has made a strong call to save his country's last existing nuclear arms control pact with the United States, proposing to extend it at least for one year
9:41AM ( 26 minutes ago )
Virus at 'turning point' in Europe, hitting at-risk groups
Doctors are warning that Europe is at a turning point as the coronavirus surges back across the continent, including among vulnerable people, and governments try to impose restrictions without locking whole economies down
9:38AM ( 29 minutes ago )
Thai PM refuses to resign, police crack down on protesters
Thailand’s prime minister is rejecting calls for his resignation, while riot police crack down on thousands of student-led protesters rallying in the capital in defiance of a strict state of emergency
9:36AM ( 31 minutes ago )