Directed by The Motorcycle Diaries’Â Walter Salles, and starring a hip young cast that includes Twilight’sÂ Kristen Stewart and Tron Legacy’sÂ Garret Hedlund, the film adaptation of Jack Kerouac’sÂ On the RoadÂ is currently in production, set to hit theaters in 2011. As one of the most influential novels of the twentieth-century, Road portrays the stomach-churning,Â dashboard-thumping,Â engine-vrrummingÂ restlessnessÂ of the American spirit like few others before or since.
Originally published by Viking Press in 1957, perhaps one of the reasons it took the popular story so long to be depicted on the big screen is that Kerouac’s narrative is as disjointed as a benzedrine-induced, cooler-than-Miles-Davis-while-driving-3,000-miles,Â lucidÂ dream. Hopping back and forth from coast-to-coast, city-to-city, and flat-to-flat,Â in the back seats of pick-up trucks, Greyhound buses, and even a CadillacÂ limousine, most directors saw it as tooÂ impossible a task to pin downÂ Road‘s energyÂ on film. But for Salles, who experienced great successÂ with the Che Guevara-chroniclingÂ Motorcylce Diaries, the opportunity provedÂ muchÂ tooÂ stimulating to pass up.Â Â SallesÂ has long been interested inÂ transforming the book’s wordsÂ to pictures, even goingÂ so far asÂ to followÂ in Kerouac’s footsteps in order to prepare for the project, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Before there were hipsters, punks, hippies, or rock ‘n’ rollers,Â there were beatniks.Â Inevitably parodied by the mainstream media and pop culture, “Beat” wasÂ a term which Kerouac originally intended to connote a state ofÂ destitutionÂ (or beingÂ “bent out of shape from society’s pliers” (Dylan)), but also beatific-ness on the groove of beatitude. While the literary establishment has progressively porked their noses to On the Road as well as toÂ Kerouac’s writing style in general, the novel continues to engage droves of youngÂ readers for one simple reason: It GOes!
On the Road is scheduled to begin shooting in August, which leaves little room for Stewart between the end of On the Road and the beginning of shooting on the fourth Twilight film, Breaking Dawn. Breaking Dawn‘s looking at an October start at the earliest, with Summit Entertainment StudioÂ just announcing November 18, 2011 as the film’s release date.
*Hopefully if any conflict arises, Stewart will come to her senses and realize that all this vampire vs. wolf b.s. that’s beenÂ going on in Hollywood recently is the exact same thing that put Jack, Neal,Â Thomas WolfeÂ and every other red-blooded,Â nomadic spirit in their earlyÂ graves. I.e., banality is the un-grooviestÂ reality. Dig?