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the pioneer of Dylan Studies; writer, public speaker, critic; became a Doctor of Letters in 2015 (awarded by the University of York, UK)

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Friday, July 01, 2011


Blogger Frank Beacham reports that the Coen Brothers are working on a film about Dave Van Ronk. Details here.

Two things. First, from the Grumpy Old Man In Me: even in the age of throw-any-old-unchecked-stuff-online, you'd think Mr. Beacham might bother to spell Coen just that one way in his own report; but no, he calls them Coen and Cohen in the same paragraph.

Second, when he writes that Van Ronk's story "is in the memoir 'The Mayor of MacDougal Street', which was published with the help of a collaborator after Van Ronk’s death", it seems churlish of him not to have namechecked that collaborator. It was Elijah Wald  -  author, among other things, of  "Escaping The Delta" (a book about Robert Johnson) and a very active member of the Pre-War Blues Discussion Group I belong to.

That said, what an interesting prospect such a film offers. And who should play Bob?


Blogger Frank Beacham said...

My errors are corrected. Thank you, Mr. Gray!

5:18 pm  
Blogger justme said...

It seems the 'Grumpy Old Man' in you worked this time Mr Gray. As for the "who should play Bob?" This was discussed briefly on twitter recently and Michael Sheen was a popular choice 1)Great actor 2)Superb at voices (and let's face it, Bob's wouldn't be an easy one to get right) 3)ALWAYS closely resembles the person he's portraying AND 4)He already has the hair!

7:41 pm  
Anonymous Kieran said...

"And who should play Bob?"

Probably seven different actors this time...

10:31 pm  
Blogger joe butler said...

from one grumpy old man to another Michael, I think you should play Dylan. Acerbic, sarcastic, with withering put downs, a bit of CGI and I can see you trudging down Bleeker St with say Ann Widdicombe as
as Suze

12:45 pm  
Blogger Michael Gray said...

Well, Joe, what a strange combo of flattery and the, er, Widdicombative. I would no more walk arm in arm with that woman than write a study of Bono's work.

7:23 pm  
Blogger Seth said...

Michael, I often disagree with you, but I do appreciate your comments on "Bono's work". It is just beyond me how people can listen to U2.

Anyway, in connection with someone playing Dylan, I just wanted to mention a movie that has been mostly forgotten about, "Chords of Fame" about Phil Ochs (not the recent documentary). I saw it many years ago, probably 1984, and as I recall there was a brief scene with an actor playing Dylan, shades on and smoking. Don't know who it was though. Just a trivia note. This is the movie

Incidentally, I saw the movie on a double-bill with Don't Look Back. It was at small theatre in Philadelphia, the TLA, where about 10 years later I saw Dylan. I was amused at the time to be seeing him at the exact same spot where I had seen Don't Look Back.


5:11 pm  

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