Bored to Death‘s Jonathan Ames – the show’s creator, writer and all around bossman, as opposed to lead character, also called Jonathan Ames – has been a prolific creator across many media. Not only is there the show there are comic books, essays, novels, stage shows, memoirs. What we’re most concerned with here though, I suppose, are his works for cinema.

Currently in post production is The Extra Man, directed by Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini, and co-scripted by the directors and Ames. Coming up later, a possible picture based upon Ames’ comic strip The Alcoholic and a big screen version of Wake Up, Sir! that the novelist has written himself.

Wake Up, Sir! tempts the reader to infer autobiographical detail, as did Bored to Death and, frankly, pretty much everything Ames has ever put his name to. It concerns an author called who has failed to follow up his first novel, amusingly entitled I, Pity I and has become an alcoholic. After an accident nets him a big payout he hires a valet named Jeeves and they set off on a rather un-Bertie Wooster voyage to an artist’s retreat in upstate New York. Sex farce and capers ensue. You might imagine Alexander Payne doing a good job with the adaptation, perhaps.

Talking to The Gothamist, Ames says that ” I also have a screenplay for my novel Wake Up, Sir! that I’m looking to do one more revision on”.

Regarding his comic book there is nothing so advanced or solid as yet, just his report that “there is some interest in turning my graphic novel The Alcoholic into a movie”. I dare say the success or otherwise of his first work to be adapted for the big screen will have some effect on those interest levels.

When it reaches cinemas next year (Ames says “we’re hoping that it will make it into theaters in 2010”), The Extra Man will take us on a trip into two particular New York subcultures – gay clubs and society dances. Paul Dano has the lead in the film while Kevin Kline seems to have been dealt a real doozy of a role as his eccentric mentor. It’s definitely one of my most anticipated movies, for American Splendor‘s Springer Berman and Pulcini even more so than Ames.

Incidentally, Ames has also been a boxer under the alias The Herring Wonder- hence the image at the head of the post. The more I find out about him, the more mysterious he seems.

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