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Jennifer Merin

J.D. Salinger Documentary Unveiled

By February 1, 2010

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A two-hour documentary about the beloved, famously reclusive and recently deceased J.D. Salinger is finished and currently being shopped by filmmaker Shane Salerno to premiere at a springtime film festival -- Cannes, for example, would be ideal.

The unveiling of the documentary's existence comes quickly after Salinger's death on January 28, 2010, at 91 years of age.

"There is just as much interest in the Catcher in the Rye author after his death as there was during his life." comments Mike Fleming in his exclusive report at Deadline: Hollywood

According to Fleming, the filmmaker-financed documentary was originally supposed to take six months to produce, but turned out to be the product of five years of solid research. The project became a labor of love. Salerno interviewed 150 sources -- many of whom are famous literary figures, artists and actors and some of whom are Salinger's aging peers -- for the film, and includes segments about Salinger's stint as soldier in WWII, his love affair with Oona O'Neill (who left him for Charlie Chaplin) and the secret manuscripts he had locked in a vault. Salerno also co-authored (with David Shields) a 700-page companion book.

As a very effective tease, Fleming says there are five minutes of footage that have not yet been shown to anyone for "security reasons." Could this guarded footage be of Salinger, himself? What a coup that would be! Can't wait to see this documentary -- along with the millions of other fans of the fascinating author and his inspiring work.

(PHOTO: J.D. Salinger. Courtesy Getty Images)


February 10, 2010 at 11:47 am
(1) Lori says:

I am excited to learn that there is a documentary about J. D. Salinger.The fact that is was five years in the making tells me that it will be comprehensive,enlightening and tell us much more about this elusive figure. The inclusion of “Catcher in the Rye” as modern high school requirement is a step forward for American educaton.What better way for students to learn about the world and how it works than to be constantly reading what is politically correct.If you hate the book or love the book it makes people think about values and hypocricy.It restores the importence of debate and critical thinking.

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