The most frequently asked question during my recent Providence Rag book tour: Who would you want to play the characters in a film version of the Mulligan crime novels?
Frankly, it’s not a subject I’ve wasted much time dreaming about. After all, very few of the hundreds of crime novels published every year are ever sold to the movies or TV–and most of the ones that are never make it into production. When it does happen to an author, it’s like getting hit by lightning–but in a good way.
Still, because so many people keep asking the question, I thought I should make an effort to come up with a thoughtful reply.
So here’s my dream cast:
Why? He’s a bit old for the part but can play younger, and he embodies the smart mouth and bad attitude toward authority that is Mulligan.
Why? Because like Thanks-Dad, he conveys a misleading naivety that makes him easy to underestimate.
Why? She kinda just looks like Gloria to me, and Sharon Stone is too mature for the part.
Why? Because Daniel J. Travanti might not be available.
Why? Because she has the grace and commanding physical presence that is Rosie–but she’ll have to dye her hair dark brown for the part.
Why? He’s got the right look and the right working-class manner of speaking.
Why? Because she embodies Yolanda’s elegance and intelligence–and because, dammit, Mulligan deserves a woman like her.
Why? Because he does the steely-eyed thing really well, and because Parisi doesn’t talk much. In Mystic River, Bacon did a lot with a character who didn’t talk much.
Think she’s waaaay to young for Mulligan? She’s actually 40–but she looks a lot younger, which is good because Mulligan is quite a bit older than Veronica. And like Veronica, Grace Park has a winsome charm that can make men fail to spot a devious streak.
Bruce DeSilva as Ed Lomax, managing editor of The Providence Dispatch and Mulligan’s boss. Why? Because Lomax is a man of few words, so I should be able to remember my lines.
Providence Rag, the third novel in my Edgar Award-winning Mulligan series, is available in hardcover, e-book and audio book editions here.