Monday, March 15, 2010

Less Than Zero 2

Just discovered Bret Easton Ellis is publishing a sequel (continuation?) to his debut Less Than Zero in June 2010, called Imperial Bedrooms (love that cover). Amazon says: "Clay, a successful screenwriter, has returned from New York to Los Angeles to help cast his new movie, and he’s soon drifting through a long-familiar circle. Blair, his former girlfriend, is married to Trent, a powerful manager who’s still a bisexual philanderer, and their Beverly Hills parties attract various levels of fame and fortune. Then there’s Clay’s childhood friend Julian, a recovering addict, and their old dealer, Rip, face-lifted beyond recognition and seemingly even more sinister than in his notorious past."

What's not to like? Plus, if they adapt this one into a movie, they already know who to cast; all the actors from the Less Than Zero adaptation are still going: Andrew McCarthy, Robert Downey, Jr., Jami Gertz, and James Spader. Maybe the Bangles can reunite and cover a song by, say, Robert Palmer or Ah-Ha.

In the mid-eighties I read Less Than Zero, Bright Lights, Big City (Jay McInerney), and the Mysteries of Pittsburgh (Michael Chabon). All by young male writers, these books featured protagonists my age. These novels were aimed right at me, by writers my age. I imagined we listened to the same music, had the same focus on pop culture, and drank the same drinks, if not lived similar lifestyles. I was envious that somebody like Ellis, born a week after me, was already so famous and (I imagined) so rich while I was still struggling to make rent and write a decent screenplay or story, not to mention complete a novel. I wanted to live the dream of a young novelist without earning it.

I have only read two of Ellis' novels, the second was The Rules of Attraction, his follow-up to Zero. I dipped into American Psycho when it was released in 1990 to intense brouhaha, and have been curious about his last novel, Lunar Park. But I'll probably be first in line on June 15th to see how these early characters from Zero have progressed, not to mention Ellis as a writer.

Less Than Zero movie trailer:


Robin said...

Dell -- I've enjoyed reading both blog entries on David Foster Wallace and Bret Ellis. I hate to admit that I haven't read either writer, but I think I will try them (particularly DFW). Food for thought!

Cynthia Sherrick said...

I would watch any movie with Robert Downey, Jr. and Andrew McCarthy. ;)
Do we hear sequel?

Dell Smith said...

I'd go see that sequel, actually. I admit to running out and seeing Less Than Zero when it first came out, and really digging it ("That's my generation!"). I haven't seen it lately, but I'm guessing (from looking at that trailer again) it doesn't quite hold up. Except for RDJ, who was excellent in that. Of course, he was basically playing himself at that point (a crack head). Still, did it well.