Emma Forrest’s memoir about suicide, a movie star and the Jewish shrink who saved her
For obvious reasons (and in the interest of full disclosure) I won’t add much to the news that my friend Emma’s upcoming memoir “Your Voice In My Head” has been optioned for film.
What I will do is excerpt from the Deadline.com report by Tim Adler, and say that I’ve read the memoir and it’s brilliant and beautifully written. As mentioned in the headline of this post, it details Emma’s decade-ago suicide attempt, the New York Jewish shrink who rehabilitated her and the relationship with a Hollywood star that threatened her delicate balance. Emma certainly has her critics (whom you’ll encounter in the Deadline.com comments section) who insist that she’s using someone else’s celebrity to advance her career. That is utter rubbish. Emma has always been the kind of writer who draws from a deep well of lived experience and parlays those truths into art. I dare her critics to excoriate her not for having had a love affair with someone famous, but for the fact that her book is either poorly written (it’s not), insipidly boring (it’s not) or uninspired (it’s not). In my opinion, Emma should be praised for her talent and pitied for the immense pain she suffered in order to unleash it.
Ruby Films, the British production company behind Jane Eyre and Tamara Drewe, has optioned Your Voice In My Head, a memoir by Los Angeles-based screenwriter Emma Forrest. Then aged 22, Forrest tried to kill herself before being saved by a New York–based psychiatrist who was secretly dying of cancer. It’s Good Will Hunting meets Girl, Interrupted and “it will make a brilliant film,” Ruby Films boss Alison Owen tells me. But the elephant in the room is that Your Voice In My Head is also about Forrest’s ex-lover, actor Colin Farrell. Never named in the book (he’s referred to only as “GH” – ‘Gypsy Husband’’, she and Farrell were together when she was writing it. She warned him there was going to be a lot of Brit tabloid interest in her book and offered Farrell the chance to read it before publication. He declined. It’s not clear if he now knows the book is being made into a film. It’s not the first time she’s used Farrell for subject matter. Following the break-up of their year-long relationship, she wrote Liars (A-E) about him and other actor boyfriends. It focuses on a woman who’s so swept up by President Obama’s supposedly perfect marriage that she travels across America to the inauguration and stops off along the way asking old boyfriends why they broke up with her. Scott Rudin and the old Miramax bought the script for Richard Linklater to direct, and now Forrest says Rudin wants the project back.
The Other Press is due to publish Your Voice In My Head in the U.S. on May 1st.