Sunday, July 20, 2008

It all started with Harry Bosch

In 2004-2005, I was reading the Michael Connelly stories about Harry Bosch. It was enjoyable, because Harry and I seemed to be about the same age, and had connections to Los Angeles and the military. I was an L.A. "ex-pat" by then, living in Arizona, so it was fun to read the stories that used the city as an integral part of the story and not just a backdrop. As happens when I enjoy a character, I started to get a clearer picture of Harry as a person - not just his house in the Hollywood hills or his love of jazz, but his loneliness, bitterness, and his constant surprise at his own vulnerability. He was always getting smacked in the face by other people's choices, because he put himself out there, felt things, and tried to protect people. I started to see him driving and smoking, watching his conversations, and seeing the expressions of delight or dismay on his world-weary face. Entertaining literature seems to do that for many people - you start to re-read passages, sometimes out loud, getting more and more of the feel of the moment, and replaying the movie in your mind that stories make. And I thought, as many have, about how great it would be to see Harry on screen. I wanted to watch some sensitive and gritty actor clearly portray this bitter loner as he staggered from heartbreak to heartbreak, trying to do right in a world no longer worth his efforts.

That's where Storycasting started, a simple desire to discuss who would play Harry, and how to get him up on the screen. I'd mentioned to probably two dozen people that someone ought to make a website just to let folks like me cast the book. I found out that this activity was generally referred to as a "fantasy cast" or "dream cast". I told several of people that, if I found such a website, I was going to join it and finally have my say about who I saw in the role of Harry Bosch (and other characters). I never found any such website. I did read over the posts on the Michael Connelly official site, but it was just a static text display. I was hoping for some kind of real actor-selection process, with a list of books and their characters, and some kind of visual “Players Directory” where I could see and choose who was closest to what I saw in my head. Nothing, nada, zip – it just didn’t exist. So, by the Spring of 2007, I started to explore what it would take to actually create such a thing.

Next post: The stolen domain name?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yeah Harry is cool, I was thinking Clint Eastwood was the suggested player but I don't know for sure, I liked the Lincoln Lawyer too, great stuff. Never heard of your website, I just like detective fiction, I'll check it out.