Making “The Times Were Never So Bad: The Life of Andre Dubus”

In Uncategorized on May 25, 2009 at 12:09 pm

In 2006 I began work on the film “The Times Were Never So Bad: The Life of Andre Dubus,” an 86-minute documentary that chronicles the life of the great short story writer Andre Dubus (1936-1999).

I interviewed dozens of people in Dubus’s hometown of Haverhill, Mass., and beyond; in the late fall of that year I departed on a 9,500-mile circuit around the country that took me to Virginia, North Carolina, Louisiana, Colorado, Wyoming and California, speaking to writers who knew Dubus, to friends and former students, and family. It was a wonderful trip.

It is, I think, a “talking” project, one in which the insights of authors such as Tobias Wolff, Richard Russo, James Lee Burke and Andre Dubus III illuminate Dubus’s writing. His family members helped underline how closely Dubus’s life and work were intertwined.

The project was completed in 2007, screened at film festivals in 2008, and in 2009 is available for purchase. Thanks to all who participated!


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