Thursday, March 05, 2009

Remembering Horton Foote

We mourn the loss of the great playwright and screenwriter Horton Foote, who died yesterday in Hartford, Connecticut. He was 92. Overlook is the proud publisher of two volumes by Foote: The Last of the Thorntons from 2000, and Carpetbagger's Children and The Actor from 2003.

In a series of haunting dramatic monologues, The Carpetbagger's Children tells the story of the three daughters of Joseph Thompson, who struggle against the pressures of modern life to uphold their father's dying wish-that the estate he built in the years following the Civil War never be divided among his heirs. It is a timeless and elegiac portrayal of a once-vibrant family slowly disintegrating over time. The Actor tells the hilarious and moving story of a young man, bitten by the acting bug, who'll make any sacrifice to keep his dream of a theatrical career from being crushed under the weight of his parents' expectations for him. It is a charming exploration of artistic ambition from one of modern theater's greatest artists. The Last of the Thorntons tells the story of Alberta Thornton, the last surviving member of the powerful Thornton clan of Harrison, Texas. As she confronts the end of her life, Alberta shares an entertaining and touching lifetime of memories, including both pride and misgivings about her family’s legacy, as she struggles to let go of unrealized dreams and a lost way of life.

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