Depicting a 1970s free-love gay paradise, Anderw Holleran's masterpiece Dancer From the Dance will be adapted into a feature film, according to Deadline, with television producer and director Alan Poul (Six Feet Under, Newsroom) spearheading the project. Poul, who received Outfest's Legacy Award in 2010, also co-produced the '90s Tales of the City series that aired on PBS to some contrvoversy at the time.
In his speech, Poul discussed the urgency of preserving a queer legacy and archive of LGBT stories:
"Let's not underestimate the potency of complex narrative images, of LGBT lives portrayed with depth, with artistry, and with authenticity, in empowering and legitimizing young people to accept themselves."
The screenplay for Dancer From the Dance will be written by three gay scribes: Joshua Harmon (Off-Broadway's Significant Other), John Krokidas (Kill Your Darlings), and Austin Bunn (Kill Your Darlings).
As explained in the book's Wikipedia entry, the plot centers on:
"Anthony Malone, a young man from the Midwest who leaves behind his 'straight' life as a lawyer to immerse himself in the gay life of 1970s New York, and Andrew Sutherland, variously described as a speed addict, a socialite, and a drag queen. Their social life includes long nights of drinking, dancing, and drug use in New York's gay bars. Though they enjoy many physical pleasures, their lives lack any spiritual depth. The 'dance' of the novel's title becomes a metaphor for their lives. Malone is described as preternaturally beautiful; much of the plot concerns Sutherland's efforts to leverage Malone's beauty by 'marrying' him to a young millionaire."
Holleran is one of the three surviving members (along with Edmund White and Felice Picano) of the Violet Quill, an informal group of seven novelists who met in the early '80s before the advent of AIDS, and whose work is deeply informed by their experiences through the post-Stonewall era and the AIDS epidemic. Holleran recently spoke with Larry Kramer about his new magnum opus, The American People, and when asked by Kramer why he writes, Holleran responded:
"I couldn't not write. I sometimes ask myself: How do people get through life without writing? I think I write to calm anxiety, to process pain, and I can't imagine not writing. And yet most people live without any reflective space in between their experience and the next experience. Writing to me is reflection."