It’s been estimated that the researching and writing of Star: How Warren Beatty Seduced America consumed at least seven or eight years of Peter Biskind‘s life. But even this pales next to the writing of Michael Feeney Callan‘s Robert Redford biography, which was being worked on at least twelve years ago (according to a critic friend who was introduced to Callan as Redford’s biographer prior to the May 1998 release of The Horse Whisperer), if not a year or two prior.
Callan’s Wikipedia biography says that “for ten years from the middle nineties, Callan travelled throughout the United States interviewing more than 400 sources for his…landmark Redford biography, which has been written with the cooperation of the subject who has provided unrestricted access to his diaries, scripts and personal records.”
Well and good, but where’s the book already? And who’s publishing this thing? Callan’s Wiki page says Random House intended to publish in November 2009, and Amazon has Simon & Schuster planning to publish four months from now.
After twelve or more years of intensive labor (and working on any project with Redford will always be a slog due to the usual delays whenever Redford is involved — ask anyone who’s been there), will Simon & Schuster hold to their announced August 1, 2010 release date — or will the book be bumped again, as it was late last year?
Could Simon & Schuster be waiting for a distribution deal to be announced for Redford’s The Conspirator so they can arrange for a little piggy-back action?
The book runs 448 pages, according to Amazon. But obviously Callan has to continually update it. Who’d want to read a Redford bio that isn’t fully current at the time of release?
The August 2010 release is only four months off so why doesn’t the Amazon page show cover art (as a UK Fantastic Fiction site does), and why is there only a mention of a paperback release? And why isn’t the book mentioned on Simon & Schuster’s website? (The British site also mentions an August 2010 paperback release.)
Callan’s Wiki page says the Redford bioiography “will be published in November 2009 by Random House, USA.” And a 7.30.09 N.Y. Daily News article about Callan’s Redford biography, written by Gatecrasher‘s Amanda Sidman and Carson Griffith, also forecasted an 11.09 release.
Obviously that never happened. The above-referenced critic claims a January 2010 release was also announced, perhaps intended as a tie-in with Redford’s Sundance Film Festival, but I can’t find any mentions or links to this.