Thursday, January 05, 2023

Peter Blauner's "Picture in the Sand," the movie

Featured at My Book, The Movie: Picture in the Sand: A Novel by Peter Blauner.

The entry begins:
Picture in the Sand is a book about a movie within a book about relationship about a grandfather and his grandson. Don't worry - it's not that confusing when you read it. The premise is that a young man shocks his parents by abandoning their plans to see him off to an Ivy League college and instead goes overseas to fight in a "holy war." The only one who can reach him is his aged grandfather, Ali, who reveals a secret past. When he was a young man, in 1954, he went on a similar journey. After getting a job working for the legendary Hollywood director Cecil B. DeMille, he was drawn into a world of dangerous radicalism and paid a steep price. And so the book within the book is Ali sharing this cautionary tale to try to save his grandson's life - and soul.

Movies are very much part of the DNA of this story. So I have thought about casting from time to time. Unlike the era of the DeMille film, we actually live at a time when there are well-known, even bankable Egyptian-American stars for the international market. Rami Malek is a wonderful actor and could easily play Ali as a young man. I'm also a big fan of Ramy Youssef, the prodigiously talented comedian and writer, who created the most excellent television show Ramy. In fact, that show by itself could provide actors for a number of the key roles in the book's scenario.

The Westernized characters are big ones as well. Maybe the most interesting to cast would be Cecil B. DeMille. He had a larger-than-life persona that belongs to another era. For some reason, I think...[read on]
Visit Peter Blauner's website.

Writers Read: Peter Blauner (September 2018).

The Page 69 Test: Sunrise Highway.

Writers Read: Peter Blauner (December 2022).

The Page 69 Test: Picture in the Sand.

My Book, The Movie: Picture in the Sand.

--Marshal Zeringue