Todd Field Adapting the Western Epic 'Creed of Violence'
by Alex Billington
June 2, 2009
Actor-turned-filmmaker Todd Field last directed the drama Little Children in 2006, a film which I revisited recently and was still impressed by. Variety announces today that Field will next be adapting the forthcoming Boston Teran novel The Creed of Violence, a western epic set in 1910. Field is currently only writing the screenplay, but he is selective about assignments and rarely scripts projects that he doesn't direct. Michael De Luca will produce this adaptation. Field is also attached to the adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's Blood Meridian, but that has been stuck in development, so I'm not sure which we'll see first.
The novel, which won't be out on bookshelves until November, is about two men - a desperado and a government agent with a secret connection to him - who try to thwart an arms smuggling ring. Boston Teran's other novel, God Is a Bullet, is already being adapted by Ehren Kruger. Todd Field's first film was In the Bedroom in 2001 and Little Children was his follow-up. It'll be interesting to see him explore the western genre, I just hope it's not as bland as Ed Harris' Appaloosa. It sounds like a good story and I'm hoping for something thrilling, like 3:10 to Yuma, if I have to reference a modern day western recently.
I thought Appaloosa was way more interesting and action packed than 3:10 to Yuma...the dynamic between Ed Harris and Viggo's characters made that movie great both comedically and dramatically...3:10 to Yuma dragged on and was really slow paced with almost no action or tension.
peloquin on Jun 2, 2009
It's a shame Fields is attached to either--they sound like they could be interesting and exciting with a vivid, dynamic director at the helm. Fields' narcotic, staid pacing destroys the humanity in his projects. Both In the Bedroom and Little Children were much better texts than films, which is ironic--Fields flattened the drama and life and passion right out of both projects. Vivid texts became boring, mannered movies.
Chad on Jun 2, 2009
I hope to god all three screenplays mentioned come into fruition. Lord knows we need more westerns.
jules on Jun 2, 2009
Field's first film IN THE BEDROOM is one of the best Westerns in modern cinema. Though it takes place in New England and so could technically be called an "Eastern" it has all the archetypes of a classic Western. Small town Doctor, School marm wife, fisherman son (read farmer) and cannery owner's son (rancher). The film sets out a theme similar to John Ford's classic THE MAN WHO SHOT LIBERTY VALANCE. I can't wait to see what Field does with CREED OF VIOLENCE. The adaptation he did of Andre Dubus' short story KILLINGS is a case study in adapting realist fiction for the screen.
Ellen on Jun 2, 2009
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