Phone Message Transcript: April 30th, 2003
[appearing on Anne's fan phone line]
"Hello guys, it's April 25, 2003. I want to thank you for all of your calls and all of your messages. This is Anne Rice, and I've enjoyed everything you've had to say. I wanted to say, that when I told you there would be no more vampires and no more witches, and that I wasn't going to write about them anymore, it certainly isn't going to be the end of my involvement with them. We have the big miniseries coming up with them in television that we're going to do, that involves the whole WITCHING HOUR trilogy. THE WITCHING HOUR, TALTOS, and LASHER all of them will be on network television, probably next year. It will probably go into production this year. The screenplays are just being finished and we will know very soon when the production time will begin. I intend to work hard over the next few years, to see if the other books in The Vampire Chronicles, maybe have some kind of life in television, too. I intend to give it a try certainly. I think there's a lot of material in The Vampire Chronicles that can be made into really wonderful film. Even though I've had some disappointments in the past and discouragement, I intend to try to see that The Vampire Chronicles have that kind of life. The story of the vampire Lestat himself. How he grew up in France, what happened to him, how he went to Paris. That has yet to really be told on the screen. The small screen or the big screen. I think I'm working with people now on "The Witching Hour" who'll be very capable of adapting that for television in some very lush and beautiful way. You know, nothing is being done on it right now; but that doesn't mean it can't be done in the future. So I have, ahead of me, a lot of opportunities perhaps, to adapt the witches and the vampires in different forms. So certainly these characters will go on to have life in different ways. But with my writing, I definitely have to take a different route.
I will be publishing BLOOD CANTICLE in the fall. It will be Lestat's last book; and Lestat is definitely the star of it. It is wonderful to be back in his voice. I'm working on the galleys right now, correcting them, and what that means basically, is that I am going through the first print run of the book to see if there are any typos or if I made any mistakes. So I have to become Lestat again, and move with him again, and look through his blue eyes. It's always thrilling. It's always thrilling to be with his moral complexity and his outlook and his energy and his wonderful omnisexual ambiance. I hate to leave him, in a way; but I really have to. I have new things I want to do. I have new prescriptives I want to explore, so I really have to go someplace else.
I did ask the question "Did anybody know who Lloyd C. Douglas was?" I happened to see the movie "The Robe", and it was the first movie ever made in CinemaScope. I saw it as a child at the Saenger Theater, in New Orleans. I was in the front row. I saw Gene Simmons and Richard Burton in it, and it was this great big biblical saga about this Centurion who helped to crucify Christ. Richard Burton was wonderful in it, and he later became a Christian, of course. Well, Lloyd C. Douglas wrote the book, THE ROBE. So I was just wondering if anybody knew about him now. In the early 50's and in the 40's, he was a very famous American writer. He wrote a book called THE MAGNIFICENT OBSESSION, and that was made into a movie two different times. I think the first the time it had Irene Dunne and the second time, the cast involved Rock Hudson, I believe. I'm not sure. Maybe some of you movie buffs can call and correct me. But anyway, I was just curious to know if his name meant anything to you. And some of you certainly did know who he was, and you had read his books, and I appreciated that. I was quite moved that Lloyd C. Douglas had not vanished from the scene. His books are around and I wonder if somebody might not remake them now. I think it would be wonderful if someone remade "The Robe" or "The Magnificent Obsession". I think it would be a grand thing to do. I think it would be great if they made "Quo Vadis" again; the great First century epic. I don't know if any of you saw that. I was a really little kid when that came to the movies, and I saw it at the Low's State Theater; which was then a grand and palatial movie palace. I know I'm being a little redundant there. I sat in the front row of the balcony for that one. It had Robert Taylor in it, and Deborah Kerr, and Peter Ustinof made his American debut in that and was just too enchanting. Some other wonderful British actor played Petronius, one of the Senators who had to put up with Nero's madness; and he was enchanting, too.
Anyway, I've been watching all this stuff on DVD. It seemed appropriate for Easter, and I rather enjoyed it. It put me in mind of those days in my childhood when these fabulous epics would sweep us up and knock us out. That brings me around to repeating myself; but lastly the Ridley Scott movie, which brought all those memories back to me, was "Gladiator". "Gladiator" means we can do it all again now, doesn't it? We can do those things that people said we can't do any more. Which they did say for a while that we couldn't do things like "Spartacus" again. That we didn't have the money, we didn't have the means. Well, "Gladiator" proved that that isn't true. That anything can be done now. I would love to see all kinds of new biblical epics. So, that's the end of that little speech.
Now, what else do I have to tell you? What other questions do I have to have answered? Oh here's one thing, Michael in San Diego, leave your phone number next time you call. Okay? It's important. I'd like to call you. Leave your number for me. Okay now, what else?
Oh, I am now going on tour in October. I'll probably be on "The Today Show" near the end of October. I don't know what towns I am going to yet; but I will tell you as soon as I know. I know it will be near the end of the tour that I go to New York. I'm working on my new book. I'm supposed to be writing this very minute. I'm supposed to be writing every minute, when I am working on a new book. I better get off the line now, because I've been talking for 6 minutes and 38 seconds. I love you dearly. I'll come back with a more coherent message soon, I promise. You writers out there - write. We need you. I love you. Bye bye."