Wallace’s ‘Jest’ still gestating

Late author's works circulate film industry

Before his apparent suicide Sept. 12, David Foster Wallace enjoyed wunderkind status within lit circles, drawing frequent comparisons to Don DeLillo and Thomas Pynchon.

Still, Hollywood barely seemed to notice his narrative contributions. To date, only one of Wallace’s works — the short story “Brief Interviews With Hideous Men” — has been adapted for the bigscreen. John Krasinski wrote, directed and starred in “Hideous Men,” which he shot in fall 2006 in New York.

Krasinski’s passion project, which was optioned long before the actor rose to fame as a star of NBC’s “The Office,” was never intended as a commercial vehicle. And because of his time-consuming TV and film commitments, Krasinski only recently began to put the finishing touches on the pic, which is in the final stages of editing.

With a cast that also includes Bobby Cannavale, Max Minghella and Christopher Meloni, “Hideous Men” will likely hit the fest circuit in the coming months.

But it won’t mark the final chapter for Wallace. Open City Films’ Jason Kliot is producing an adaptation of “Infinite Jest” — long considered the author’s opus — from a screenplay penned by Keith Bunin. Kliot’s producing credits include “Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room” and recent Toronto fave “American Swing.”

Ironically, Kliot, who optioned “Infinite Jest” two years ago, also produced this year’s Sundance entry “Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson,” about another prolific author who committed suicide.

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