Books & Books Miami Beach. June 8, 2013, 2:30 p.m.
When Alan Greenberg first showed up at Werner Herzog’s Munich home at age twenty-four, he was, according to the director, the first outsider to seek him and recognize his greatness. Every Night the Trees Disappear is Alan Greenberg’s intimate chronicle of how the visionary filmmaker Werner Herzog directed a masterwork. Greenberg’s observations, interwoven with Herzog’s original screenplay, elucidate just how unusual Herzog’s filmmaking methods could be. Rather than a conventional, journalistic account of how a director makes a movie, Every Night the Trees Disappear instead presents a unique vision with the feel of a novel – intimate, penetrating, and filled with mystery.
Robert Johnson was undoubtedly the most outstanding of the Mississippi Delta blues musicians and also one of the first inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but his short life remains steeped in mystery and wrapped in some of the most enduring legends of modern music. Love in Vain is Greenberg’s highly acclaimed, genre-defying screenplay and is widely considered to be one of the foremost books on Robert Johnson’s life and legacy and an extraordinary exercise in American myth-making. Newly revised and complete with extensive historical notes on Johnson’s life and the culture of the Mississippi Delta and blues music during the 1930s, Love in Vain is at once a classic of music writing and a screenplay whose reputation lies firmly in the realm of great American literature.
Love in Vain “has accomplished what I have tried to do for a long time: that is, to develop screenplays as a new genre of literature which has its own natural right of existence.” – Werner Herzog
Alan Greenberg is a screenwriter, director, and producer who has worked with legendary masters of cinema Werner Herzog and Martin Scorsese. His first solo script, Love in Vain, about legendary blues genius Robert Johnson, was the first American screenplay ever published by a major publishing house as literature. He has directed the feature documentary Land of Look Behind which won the Chicago International Film Festival’s Gold Hugo Award. Later this year, he will produce Love in Vain with David Lynch as director. Born in New York City, he was raised in Miami.
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