Home Signing and Appearance Profiles CA – City of Blows Q&A

CA – City of Blows Q&A


Tim Blake Nelson appears in conversation with Guillermo del Toro to discuss the new novel CITY OF BLOWS on Tuesday, February 7th at 7:30pm.

Doors open at 6:00pm; Event starts at 7:00pm; Book signing to follow the program.

Tim Blake Nelson’s debut novel is an epic group portrait of four men grappling for control of a script in a radically changing Hollywood or the City of Blows.

It’s early 2020, and legendary producer Jacob Rosenthal is eager to make his next film, Coal, adapted from the bestselling novel by the celebrated writer Rex Patterson. The project–which takes on the controversial topic of race in America–is Jacob’s envisioned magnum opus, and likely his swan song. He selects David Levit to direct, a major opportunity for the classically trained actor/director whose own films, while garnering critical acclaim, have not resulted in box office success.

But the announcement of David’s hiring doesn’t sit well with a producer from David’s past, Brad Shlansky, who channels the last remaining vestiges of his creativity into a revenge plot that could very well scupper the making of Coal, and ruin the lives of its producer and director in the process.

A sprawling, character-driven depiction of the modern film industry, City of Blows reaches back decades to the formative experiences of each of the novel’s central figures to explore what first motivated them to become involved in the quixotic and often venal world of movie-making. Driven by their diverse backgrounds, each must navigate the same huckstering circus that puts films on screen.

From the start, Tim Blake Nelson’s sharp and unsparing voice holds a mirror up to America itself, using Hollywood to investigate the cultural and economic fault lines that have come to dominate and confound us all. You will find yourself unable to turn away from the ruthlessness and despair, the hubris and sheer evil, as City of Blows accelerates to its unimaginable yet inevitable crescendo. (Unnamed Press)

Tim Blake Nelson is an actor, filmmaker and playwright with over a hundred screen credits to his name. He has directed five films, four of which he wrote, all released theatrically in the United States and internationally. He has written and published three plays produced Off-Broadway in New York as well as regionally, most recently Socrates, which enjoyed a sold-out run through three extensions at the Public Theater in the spring of 2019. City of Blows is his first novel.

Mexican-born filmmaker Guillermo del Toro has created a distinctive cinematic style incorporating a world of monster movies, comic books and exuberant visuals straight from his imagination. Del Toro studied under legendary Oscar®-winning makeup and special effects artist Dick Smith and made his first feature film, Cronos, in 1993. Since then, he has directed and produced numerous films in the United States, Mexico and Spain, including The Devil’s Backbone, Pan’s Labyrinth, Mimic, Hellboy, Pacific Rim and Crimson Peak. Del Toro wrote and directed The Shape of Water, which was nominated for 13 Academy Awards® and won four, including Best Picture and Best Director. He also received a Golden Globe® and a BAFTA for directing the film. His latest project, Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio, which he directed alongside award winning stop-motion legend Mark Gustafson, marks the filmmaker’s first animated feature and serves as the inspiration for the upcoming MoMA exhibit “Guillermo del Toro: Crafting Pinocchio.” Del Toro’s work is known for its strong connection to fairy tales and horror, infusing visual or poetic beauty in the monstrous.

Event location: Colburn School, Zipper Hall located at 200 S. Grand Ave. Los Angeles, 90012.

Tickets include one entry and one hardcover copy of City of Blows, to be handed out at check-in.

Please note: Masks are strongly encouraged on the Colburn campus. Audience members must comply with our Patron Policy outlined on Colburn School’s website.

Questions? Email us at info@booksoup.com

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