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)