He began with a well planned photograph and ended a self-promoting-nighttime-talk-show-circuit-going alcoholic.

Truman Capote
Truman Capote

A 1947 Harold Halma photograph of Capote was used to promote the book. Gerald Clarke, in Capote: A Biography (1988), wrote,

“The famous photograph: Harold Halma’s picture on the dustjacket of Other Voices, Other Rooms (1948) caused as much comment and controversy as the prose inside. Truman claimed that the camera had caught him off guard, but in fact he had posed himself and was responsible for both the picture and the publicity.” Much of the early attention to Capote centered around this photograph, which was widely discussed at the time. According to Clarke, the photo created an “uproar” and gave Capote “not only the literary, but also the public personality he had always wanted.”

I saw Capote on Friday and I can’t stop thinking about this movie. There are so many layers to this man’s story. And after watching this movie, I have so much to say about fame, self-consumption, living in a different era, the true-crime novel . . . I made Dave repeatedly listen to my lengthy character analysis and then when our friends came over last night, we talked and talked about the movie some more. I have been jotting down notes over the weekend and am trying to compose my thoughts.

Alas, my life collides with Capote as Eli screams in the background, demanding I “find him a dark green, not a light green crayon.” I must go. He needs to finish coloring in his luck green clover NOW!

I will finish, because I feel so inspired to write about this crazy man. In the meantime, enjoy your Monday. I will be dropping Eli off at school, getting a bikini wax and then getting my hair colored and cut, because later this week we are going to DISNEYLAND!

Hopefully, later today, I can steal a few minutes or hours so I can finish.

17 thoughts on “Capote

  1. I’ve always been a huge Capote fan. I’m jealous that you’ve seen the movie I can’t wait to see it myself. Have you read In Cold Blood? It’s one of the most elegantly written books I’ve ever had the pleasure of enjoying. The subject matter is a bit tough, but Capotes brilliance as an author shines.

  2. Yeah for Disneyland! If you get a chance, go to downtown Disney in the evening…they have live performers who play and sell their CDs (and autograph them). Drew Tretick is usually there from like 7-10 playing the violin and he is TERRIFIC and a really nice guy.

    If anyone else is interested in violin music (or any music) his site plays some of his songs at

    Have fun Beth!!

  3. Read the biography and saw “Capote”. Re-read “In Cold Blodd” every few years. You’re right…it’s all very layered and fascinating. Phillip Seymour Hoffman SO TOTALLY deserved that Oscar.

  4. OK, my only advice to you is what my aunt told me (when we were at Disneyworld): Everyone fights by Thursday at Disney. It’s all too perfect, all the time!
    (We started our fight over who would go pick up the embroidered EARS at the front desk. We took a 2-hour break from each other so we’d stop screaming. LOL! God it makes me laugh in retrospect.)

    Togetherness is great, as long as there’s always a little not-togetherness to keep ya (me) sane…. good for you, going on vacation.

  5. Will rent the DVD on your recommendation. Have always been intriqued by the lead actor. Now that he has an Oscar? Must see.

    Have a blast in Disneyland and tell us all about your adventure please!

  6. (GASP!) I just saw the movie last night and finished blogging about it (sort of) just now. Hoffman blew me away. It had been several months since we’d gone out to see a movie, but this one was worth the wait. As curious as I am about his writing style and the book (which I’ve never read), I think it would be too horrific for me to read. Books like that do a number on me. I’m eager to read more from you on the flick, Beth!

  7. Can’t wait to see Capote. Philip Seymour Hoffman is one of my favorite actors ever.

    So cool to see you so excited by him within the maelstrom of motherhood, especially–where it is so difficult to think about Capote.

    Bikini wax! OUCH! Never had the nerve to do this. I’m actually looking for an ole-fashion suit this year which will negate the need for a bikini wax. Yes, I’m that big of a baby about it! Have a great trip! (I haven’t been to Disneyland since Grad Night ’82. Bad memories.)

  8. Aaaaggghhhh, you’re killing me with the curiosity. Why- WHYYY – was the picture of Capote such a scandal?!! Tell me tell me tell me. Or I’ll have to go look it up myself, and then (you realize) I’ll NEVER KNOW.

    Bikini wax. Are you going to go whole hog with the full Brazilian or are you just getting the hedges trimmed? (Wow, hey, why don’t you just give me your bank account number and send me your birth certificate while you’re at it? heh.) I’d love to get a bikini wax, but I think I want you to tell me just how awful it is, first. Let me know.

  9. ChickenFlicken, the photo was published back in the 1940s and was considered very risqué due to his languorous pose and come-hither look.

    Shortly afterwards he went to Paris. Someone (I forget who — Gide? Cocteau?) saw the photo, and sent him a cheque and a note saying “Come!”

    George Plimpton did a book, a collection of reminiscences of Capote, that is quite interesting and gossipy. But the film is based on the biography by Gerald Clarke.

  10. Are you going to post a picture of the hair cut and color?

    Have fun at Disneyland. I’m a total Disney fanatic. TOTAL. FANATIC.

    Can’t wait to read the rest of the post!

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