“Humor is reason gone mad,” comedy legend Groucho Marx once said. And one could argue the same is true of horror. So perhaps that’s why as unlikely a choice as Rob Zombie is to tell the story of Marx on the big screen, it also makes total sense.
Deadline reports that alterna-rock horror specialist Zombie has picked up the rights to Steve Stoliar’s memoir “Raised Eyebrows: My Years Inside Groucho’s House” which will serve as the foundation of a movie detailing the difficult final years of Groucho Marx. Adding a nice bit of prestige to the interview is Oren Moverman (“Love & Mercy,” “The Messenger,” “Time Out Of Mind“) who will be penning the script. Here’s the book synopsis:
“Raised Eyebrows” is the bittersweet story of the last years in the life of Groucho Marx, told by a young Marx Brothers fan who was fortunate enough to work for Groucho as his personal secretary and archivist, right inside Marx’s Beverly Hills home. In addition to getting to know his hero, the author was able to spend quality time with Zeppo, Gummo, Mae West, George Burns, Bob Hope, Jack Lemmon, SJ Perelman, Steve Allen, and scores of other luminaries of stage, screen, TV and literature. The downside of this dream-come-true was getting close to his idol as the curtain was coming down, and dealing with Erin Fleming – the mercurial woman in charge of Groucho’s personal and professional life.
Frankly, I think Groucho Marx would be amused that Rob Zombie is making a movie about him. That said, the filmmaker has a big task ahead of him. Not only does he have to capture the vitality of one of the greatest comedy minds of all time, he needs to find the perfect person for the lead role. And Marx’s shoes will be certainly hard to fill. But I’m willing to give Zombie the benefit of the doubt and certainly having a script from Moverman is going to be a big assist.