Ethan Hawke tapes ‘Gilead’ audio
When she learned that Ethan Hawke was working on a special audio edition of her 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 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.”
Hawke has recorded an abridged narrative of “Gilead” that was commissioned by Manhattan’s 92nd Street Y and can be heard from Oct. 19 to 29 via www.92y.org/gilead.
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 said.
Police make arrest in actor’s death:
Atlanta police announced Friday that they have made an
arrest in the shooting death of actor Thomas Jefferson Byrd.
Homicide detectives on Wednesday obtained a warrant for the arrest of Antonio Demetrice Rhynes, 30, on a felony murder charge based on evidence and tips from the public, and officers arrested him early Friday, Officer Steve Avery said.
Best known for his roles in Spike Lee films, Byrd was found dead about
1:45 a.m. on Oct. 3 near his home in Atlanta.
Byrd acted in films including “Clockers,” “Chi-Raq,” “Bamboozled,” “He Got Game” and “Da Sweet Blood of Jesus.” Also a stage actor, Byrd was nominated in 2003 for a Tony award for his performance in the Broadway revival of “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.”
Black Lives Matter cofounder lands production deal:
Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors has signed an
overall production deal with Warner Bros. Television Group to create original programming that raises Black voices on streaming services and traditional TV channels.
The multiyear agreement, announced Thursday, represents Cullors’ first overall production deal with a Hollywood studio.
Building on her political activism, she plans to work with the studio to develop scripted dramas and comedies, docuseries and animated programming for children, young adults and families.
Oct. 17 birthdays: Actor Marsha Hunt is 103. Singer Jim Seals is 79. Singer Gary Puckett is 78. Actor Michael McKean is 73. Actor George Wendt is 72. Singer Alan Jackson is 62. Singer Ziggy Marley is 52. Actor Wood Harris is 51. Singer Wyclef Jean is 51. Rapper Eminem is 48. Actor Sharon Leal is 48. Actor Felicity Jones is 37.
Ethan Hawke, pictured in January, voices the Rev. John Ames in the novel “Gilead” for an audiobook airing online.