Monday, April 21, 2008

Read You Like a Book

This is one of the videos I found while collecting YouTube vids featuring bookstores for last week's TT. This one is a movie trailer for a movie I'd never heard of even though Danny Glover has a bit part in it. It is an independent film by Echelon Studios and made the rounds of the independent film festivals starting in 2006. Here is the blurb off the info section:

A magical book transforms all who come in contact with is in a neighborhood bookstore. Our main characters include Dante, manager of the bookstore, who harbors a crippling secret from his past; Gina, a quirky customer, who know about every subject except the most important -- love; Zoe, Dante's former lovers, whose life is falling apart; Norman, a clerk, who is short on size, but big on political paranoia; and Marcia, another clerk, who's a wise-cracking movie buff...When the magical book is used to hide incriminating data, we add to the mix some dangerous intruders and Rick, a whistle blowing doctor up against a powerful pharmaceutical corporation. What our audience will experience reflects what they might discover on the shelves of any bookstore: different genres -- fantasy, romance, comedy, eroticism, and mystery and a tapestry of storylines that weave together to form Read You Like A Book.
There was also a link above the blurb and under the imperative: BUY IT NOW!
I followed this to find out more. The same trailer was featured on that page along with links to more DVD for sale. But the only 'more' I found out was that the DVD was not available in the US or Canada. This had me very curious. Why would a film in English be unavailable in the largest portion of the English speaking world? I spent hours with Google trying to find out.

I never did find a definitive answer but I made an educated guess based on info I found on the movie's own website where there was an announcement that the December 6th DVD release party at the Berkley CA bookstore, Black Oak, where the movie was filmed, had been canceled and would be rescheduled in late January or early February. Though it says to check back for further updates there have been none to date. Considering that it also says on that page that the film had been a hit at the Mill Valley Film Festival, my best guess is that the delay in release for Canada and the States has something to do with the writer's strike. If anyone reading this knows what the scoop is, I'd be grateful hear.

Meanwhile, in my research I discovered the blog which improv performer Shaun Landry kept over the two weeks of the filming of Read You Like a Book in which she played a principle role. Reading that from first post to last makes me want to see this movie even more. And makes me want to see more of Shaun Landry's work. below is a clip of Shaun Landry in the scene she had with Danny Glover.

I do hope I'm not overdoing the bookstore theme on here but I can't promise to lighten up. I seem to be in the grip of an obsession. I have joked often over the years that I would love to live in a bookstore or a library. It isn't as much of a joke as I pretend. I find my passion for being surrounded by books to be as strong as my passion for writing itself. Once I answered a meme question re what I would do if I won the lottery by describing my dream bookstore in which I would live and install my dream writing office and hold book clubs, author readings, writing workshops and free tutoring in literacy and second languages. I began that answer in the spirit of frivolity but by the time I'd finished describing it, I felt far from frivolous. I felt, during the thirty minutes or so it took to imagine and describe, that I had found the home I'd been looking for for decades. It was very hard to snap back into the reality of that moment.

1 tell me a story:

Unknown 6/25/2008 6:52 PM  

I was pointed to your blog by a friend.

Thank you so much for the kind words and the posting of the clip with myself and Danny for Read You Like a Book. It was indeed a wonderful experience from start to finish working on the movie in a *live bookstore* and I hope you enjoy the movie.

The movie is indeed available in the U.S. now and can be found on and many other online sources.

If you are in S.F. I run a seven week improv festival. You are more than welcome to see more of what I do in the Bay Area.

Many warm regards,
Shaun Landry

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