Status Update: ‘On the Road,’ the Movie

Travel Blog  •  Michael Yessis  •  09.16.08 | 12:19 PM ET


It’s been a little over a year since we noted that the movie version of Jack Kerouac’s classic book was slated to be filmed in 2008 by Walter Salles, director of “The Motorcycle Diaries.” The new timetable? The Independent’s James Mottram quotes Salles saying he’ll “be shooting either at the end of this year or the beginning of the next.”

I want to believe. I really do. But after reading Mottram’s recap of the history of the “On the Road” adaptation, I’m not confident we’ll see major progress anytime soon. Consider the lede to Mottram’s piece:

It’s a considerable irony that Jack Kerouac wrote On the Road in three weeks: its screen adaptation has been almost 30 years in the works. Rather at odds with Kerouac’s so-called “spontaneous prose” style, attempts to film this defining novel of the Beat Generation have been mired in development hell ever since Francis Ford Coppola bought the rights in 1979.

Another wrench: Apparently no actor has been cast as Sal Paradise.


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