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‘The Black Count’ Wins 2013 Pulitzer Prize For Biography. Maybe We’ll Get A Film Adaptation Now…

'The Black Count' Wins 2013 Pulitzer Prize For Biography. Maybe We'll Get A Film Adaptation Now...

I’m very pleased to see The Black Count win the 2013 Pulitzer Prize in the Biography section.

You’ll recall that I featured the novel last month, plugging it as source material for a potential big screen adaptation. I don’t expect the Pulitzer win to do much to encourage any studio to option the book, but you never know. 

The more media exposure it gets the better the opportunity. And winning a Pulitzer is certainly nothing to sneeze at.

Alexandre Davy de la Pailleterie, aka Alexandre Dumas, aka “Black Devil by some of the armies he fought against (let’s just say he was good at his job), aka The Black Count, is at the center of the recently published book from acclaimed author Tom Reiss. Its full title is The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo.

I bought a copy of the book soon after it was published, and finally read it last month, and, as I noted previously, it’s strongly-encouraged reading; quite riveting, well-written, and reads with all the thrills of a novel written by Dumas’ son, likely the most popular Dumas, also named Alexandre Dumas, author of literary classics like The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers

In fact, Dumas, the father of the author, was the inspiration for The Count Of Monte Cristo.

In short, his life is/was the stuff of legends and would make for a great epic movie – in the right hands of course.

Other 2013 Pulitzer Prize Winners of note include Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America by Gilbert King, in the General Nonfiction category.

The full list of winners follows below:


PUBLIC SERVICE – Sun Sentinel, Fort Lauderdale, FL


INVESTIGATIVE REPORTING – David Barstow and Alejandra Xanic von Bertrab of The New York Times


LOCAL REPORTING – Brad Schrade, Jeremy Olson and Glenn Howatt of the Star Tribune, Minneapolis

NATIONAL REPORTING – Lisa Song, Elizabeth McGowan and David Hasemyer of InsideClimate News, Brooklyn, NY

INTERNATIONAL REPORTING – David Barboza of The New York Times

FEATURE WRITING – John Branch of The New York Times

COMMENTARY – Bret Stephens of The Wall Street Journal

CRITICISM – Philip Kennicott of The Washington Post

EDITORIAL WRITING – Tim Nickens and Daniel Ruth of the Tampa Bay Times, St. Petersburg, FL

EDITORIAL CARTOONING – Steve Sack of the Star Tribune, Minneapolis

BREAKING NEWS PHOTOGRAPHY – Rodrigo Abd, Manu Brabo, Narciso Contreras, Khalil Hamra and Muhammed Muheisen of the Associated Press

FEATURE PHOTOGRAPHY – Javier Manzano, free-lance photographer, Agence France-Presse

Letters, Drama and Music

FICTION – “The Orphan Master’s Son” by Adam Johnson

DRAMA – “Disgraced” by Ayad Akhtar

HISTORY – “Embers of War: The Fall of an Empire and the Making of America’s Vietnam” by Fredrik Logevall (Random House),

BIOGRAPHY – “The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo” by Tom Reiss (Crown)

POETRY – “Stag’s Leap” by Sharon Olds

GENERAL NONFICTION – “Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America” by Gilbert King (Harper)

MUSIC – “Partita for 8 Voices” by Caroline Shaw, recording released on October 30, 2012 (New Amsterdam Records)

This Article is related to: News



I've chatted with the author online (facebook) about this being a great film. I even cast in my head. My understanding from him is that there has been some interest. Let's keep our fingers crossed. I don't care if it's a wide release blockbuster or not. The point is that the story needs to be told. I read this book in two days. I could not put it down accept to eat or sleep. It had been out for a month and I spent the next few months telling everyone I know to read. As for an indie version. That's ridiculous. The book takes place in Haiti, France, Egypt and Italy just to name a few places. There's nothing indie about that…

Heavy Drama

There is no reason to believe this could not be made into a motion picture. One look at the painting of Dumas tells you right off the bat that a perfect leading actor for the role is Idris Elba. Certainly, there will be enough additional roles for a U.S. and international cast of major actors of all races, popular with many audiences. All helmed by a top director and you can bet your last money, honey, that picture gets made.


Don't hold your breath, this might have to go straight INDIE!, in order to squeeze any kind of Truth syrup out of it. And if i HELM this bad boy – I'll cast WYATT CENAC as THE BLACK COUNT and NONSO ANOZIE as his son- Alexander Dumas… that's all I'm giving up, and of course, with a cold blooded script structure;-)

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