Phone Message Transcript: May 9th, 2003
[appearing on Anne's fan phone line]
"Children of the night and day, this is Anne Rice. I am talking to you from New Orleans, obviously, and it is a beautiful evening here. There are no vampires, because it's not dark yet. It's lovely...oh my gosh. All the spring plants are coming out, there are flowers everywhere in my garden, and I can see them from my glass porch up here. I can see the magnolia trees that I've planted, and they are wonderful and strong. There's nothing quite like planting a tree. It's quite incredible. You think about it, and you put it off and put it off, and then you do it. Then ten years pass, and you've got this enormous wonderful magnolia tree; and you just thank God that you were able to do it, and that it worked, and that somehow you made time for it, and you did it over everybody's objections. Although, I don't remember everybody objecting to it. Certainly, not Stan, he never objected.
I'm looking down at the swimming pool in which Michael Curry half-drowned in THE WITCHING HOUR, and I'm thinking so many things. But what I really want to tell you about this evening, after I thank you for your wonderful messages; which have indeed sustained me through every day and every hour, and continue to do so, is that Elton John and Bernie Taupin, his lyricist, are going to make a wonderful Broadway production of the three Vampire Chronicles: INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE, THE VAMPIRE LESTAT, and QUEEN OF THE DAMNED. Maybe you saw this on the news already. It was all over the news yesterday and has already surfaced on the Web. I was so excited about it.
Elton John and Bernie Taupin and Linda Woolverton, the person who is doing the story for the Broadway production, and Robert Roth, the director, and Gregg Maday, the producer from Warner Brothers. They all had a press conference at The Hit Factory, in New York, and they talked very exuberantly, apparently, about the production that they are going to do. I have seen an outline of the play, and it's just incredible. More significantly, I've heard the first four songs that Elton John has composed, with Bernie Taupin's lyrics, and they are absolutely marvelous. I've heard them on a CD that Elton John sent me, and he was performing them, and they were so heartfelt and they were so totally right to the deepest metaphorical message of the novels. They were right to the heart of what the vampire Lestat was and what the darkness in the books was all about. The deepest most important aims of the book were captured in these songs. They were wonderful. I had an opportunity to talk to Elton John, personally, and Rob Roth, the director, and I'm just thrilled about the whole thing.
I met Elton John and Bernie Taupin about twelve years ago, when they were thinking about doing this; but it just didn't work out at that time. Now, it's working out splendidly, and they are really on their way. Elton John is going to write the rest of the music. He'll have it done by the end of September, probably, and the play will have it's first reading; which is a very important step, in November of this year. I guess it will be on stage in 2005. I think they've chosen the name "The Vampire Lestat". All of this information, by the way, is on Elton John's website, and naturally I don't know the name of it, since I don't go on the Internet myself. But I'm sure you can find it. If you just punch in "Elton John" you're bound to come up with it, if you want to know about it. I wholeheartedly recommend this whole endeavor. Of course, it will be 2005 before it happens; and I don't have all the details. The story they've come up with is so true to the books. It's so true to the spirit of the books and to the characters. It's a marvelous adaptation.
I'm telling you guys, when it rains it pours. I mean, the cliche is really true. Because right now, John Wilder, out in Hollywood, is finished his screenplay for "The Witching Hour". It's the first go at the 12 hour adaptation and it's a miracle, and a wonderfully polished miracle, at that. It's already gone to NBC for the television miniseries. It's THE WITCHING HOUR, LASHER, and TALTOS. All of this is happening at the same time, and I'm here working on the galleys of BLOOD CANTICLE; the last book in which Lestat will speak, I think. I really do think it's the last one. It's about the Mayfair witches. Michael Curry and Rowan Mayfair are very prominent in it, and it's in Lestat's voice. He's talking, he's driving, I'm with him again; and all this happening and it's just so intense and wonderful.
I've got to draw back, and I've got to write a book. Summer is usually a good time for me to write a book. It always works for me. So, that's what's going to happen. But, I had to tell you about this musical. It was just wonderful news and I am very excited about it. Everybody here is. I also got to tell you about "The Witching Hour", the miniseries, because these screenplays have gone to the big guys at NBC, and we're all hoping for the best outcome on that. I feel so grateful that all of this is happening. I only wish Stan was here to see all of this. Maybe Stan is seeing it all and maybe he's happy about it, too. God love you, God bless you. Those of you who are writing, keep writing and don't let anything stop you. If you're dancing - dance, if you're acting - act, and if you're singing - sing. I love you very much. Leave me a message. Bye bye."