Anonymous asked: Rugger Miami brah?
All in good time bru.
All in good time bru.
Should have said Best in L.A, cause that’s pretty much the only place on the west coast I’ve ever been. Have to go to San Fran!!
Thanks, good stuff!
Gjelinas, best pizza on the west coast, hands down.
Yeah, I liked that one a lot too. We’ve got something similar for SS14 coming up, but even cooler, stay tuned.
Not in the pipeline right now, but the plan remains, to take over the entire world, Philly included.
Unkempt Sprezzatura FTW!
That sounds like the perfect combination!
Will hit the stores SS14. Hold on to that dough bro.
It will never happend.
Our “pocket tee’s” necks are wide enough to wear underneath.
I wear it with either worn out jeans or with cut off chino shorts in summer. Or with swim trunks if it’s a bit chilly when leaving the beach in the evening, the combo knitwear / swimwear always makes me think of old greek fishermen mending nets, has to be a good thing.
I’ll be hitting L.A mid Jan.
Spend way too little time there, so I’d love tips on new stores and restaurants worth checking out!
Hit me blogger, first beer is on me.
Will hit stores February-ish.
Happy you’re pumped, we’re pumped too!
My brother produces Amazons new TV show about Michael Connelly’s legendary crime fighter “Harry Bosch”.
Proud of you bro!
Crime writer Michael Connelly was standing in a light, cold rain on a hill overlooking downtown Los Angeles. A garbage truck rolled by, then a beat-up maroon Cadillac. It had been dark for hours and the street was empty, except for 135 members of a film crew who had set up a makeshift production camp in a dirt clearing by the side of the road.
They were shooting the opening scene of “Bosch,” a one-hour TV pilot based on Mr. Connelly’s iconic L.A. homicide detective Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch. Played by Titus Welliver, Bosch was glowering in the Cadillac, staking out the home of a suspected serial killer.
Mr. Connelly looked tired, having just weathered several marathon shoots that went until six in the morning. But he was content. He’d been waiting to watch this scene unfold for nearly 20 years.
After an epic rights struggle with Paramount, which optioned two Harry Bosch books in 1994 but never adapted them, Mr. Connelly finally bought the character rights back in 2011, spending $3 million of his own money. He was wary of getting tied up in development with another film studio. So he struck a deal with a company he knew was good at marketing and selling Harry Bosch: Amazon.
"The idea of the place that sells most of my books wanting to do a television show based on my books" was appealing, Mr. Connelly said. "That kind of synchronicity was attractive," he said.
Amazon, the world’s largest bookseller and online retailer, is now throwing itself into television. This past spring, Amazon introduced 14 original TV pilots on its website. After sifting through data to determine how many viewers finished the shows and how many five-star ratings a show received, executives ordered full series of five of the pilots, including the political comedy “Alpha House,” and “Betas,” a raunchy sendup of Silicon Valley startup culture.
Early next year, the “Bosch” pilot will go through the same numbers-crunching trial run. The show marks Amazon’s first police drama, and its first show based on a work of fiction. Amazon’s chief rival in the streaming original-television field—Netflix—has released two successful literary adaptations, a show based on Piper Kerman’s prison memoir, “Orange is the New Black,” and a series drawn from Brian McGreevy’s gory horror novel, “Hemlock Grove.” Netflix has ordered second seasons for both shows.
Amazon stands to profit even more from shows based on literary works. The company already uses sophisticated algorithms to recommend books to users based on what they have bought and read. Soon, it will be able to cross-promote books and TV shows centered on the same characters, pitching the show to people who read the books.
Joe Lewis, an executive at Amazon Studios, says literary adaptations will be a central feature of the company’s TV content. “As you start any television network, you have to define yourself and your brand, and books are a focus for us, as are well-known authors and well-known characters,” he said. “That’s something that Amazon will become known for.”
Mr. Connelly, 57, hopes that Harry Bosch fans—a vocal and loyal bunch— will flood Amazon’s customer-review forums and lobby for a full series based on the pilot. “The Bosch fan base can be helpful in that regard,” Mr. Connelly says. “I’m not too worried about this newfangled consumer testing.”
Bosch is Mr. Connelly’s most beloved character. A laconic, worn-out homicide detective who grew up in foster homes, drinks and smokes heavily and listens to jazz, Bosch belongs to the Raymond Chandler lineage of the damaged, loner detective. He appears in 17 of Mr. Connelly’s 26 novels, which have sold more than 50 million copies.
Despite the character’s gritty appeal on the page, getting Bosch to the screen has been a tortuous and costly process. Mr. Connelly sold the film rights to Paramount in 1994, when he was working as a crime reporter for the Los Angeles Times and writing novels on the side. Paramount got a 15-year option on the Bosch material and exclusive rights to the character. Mr. Connelly says he gave them more years for more money, so he could quit his job and write full time. “They had all the cards,” he says. “But I took the deal.”
Paramount rejected about half a dozen screenplays it had commissioned based on the Bosch books, Mr. Connelly said. Most of them were pretty bad, he added. “They didn’t go forward because they were procedurals, and you could see that any night on TV,” he said.
Three years ago, he had a chance to buy the rights back when the option expired. But the deal required him to pay for the studio’s development costs, and when they sent him the bill, “it was astronomical,” he says. He sued the studio for a more detailed breakdown of the costs. They eventually agreed to sell the rights back for $3 million. Paramount didn’t respond to repeated requests for comment.
It was a good moment to snatch the material back. Until then, Mr. Connelly had a dismal track record in Hollywood. In 2000, he co-wrote a 10-episode cybercrime drama titled “Level 9” that aired on UPN, and was canceled after six episodes. A few years later, he wrote an original legal drama for CBS that never got past the script phase. A 2002 movie adaptation of his novel “Blood Work,” which starred Clint Eastwood as retired FBI agent Terry McCaleb, grossed just $26 million.
Then, in the spring of 2011, Lionsgate and Lakeshore Entertainment released “The Lincoln Lawyer,” an adaptation of one of Mr. Connelly’s novels featuring defense attorney Mickey Haller. Matthew McConaughey played the lawyer, Haller, and the film got strong reviews.
Offers started pouring in for the Bosch books. Mr. Connelly wasn’t eager to sign Bosch away again, but he agreed to meet with Henrik Bastin, the head of the production company behind the AMC series “The Killing.” Mr. Bastin is a Bosch uber-fan. He had devoured the books one after another and named his 6-year-old son Harry, after Bosch. Two years ago, over breakfast at the Standard hotel in L.A., Mr. Bastin impressed Mr. Connelly when he pulled out a rifle casing and put it on the table. In the novels, Bosch collects casings after the rifle salutes at funerals for fallen colleagues.
Once they had a script, Mr. Connelly’s publishing track record and connections helped land the deal with Amazon. Last spring, Mr. Connelly invited some friends from New York to his home in Tampa, Fla. to watch some of the New York Yankees spring training games. Laurence Kirshbaum, the head of Amazon Publishing and a longtime friend of Mr. Connelly, was one of the guests. Mr. Kirshbaum used to run the Time Warner Book Group, the parent company for Mr. Connelly’s publisher (he will leave Amazon early next year). Mr. Connelly mentioned he was shopping a script for a Bosch TV show. Mr. Kirshbaum emailed Mr. Lewis, who was developing new shows for Amazon Studios, about the show. Mr. Lewis offered to buy “Bosch” 15 minutes into the meeting with Mr. Connelly and Mr. Bastin this past May.
Mr. Connelly says that while he was won over by Amazon’s ability to cross-promote his books and the TV show, he was also intrigued by its new business model for television. Like Netflix, Amazon is developing its own shows and films as a way to build customer loyalty and expand its subscriber base. But Amazon stands to profit in different ways than its rival, and clearly views original television content as a way to sell more products from its site. To stream Amazon’s shows, users must subscribe to Amazon Prime, a $79 annual membership that provides free two-day shipping on many products. People who sign up for Prime spend three times on Amazon merchandise than do nonsubscribers, according to a recent survey from the Codex Group, a book publishing research firm.
Most book writers are shunted to the side by filmmakers, but Mr. Connelly made sure he could influence every aspect of the production. He signed on as a producer and co-wrote the pilot with Eric Overmyer, who worked on HBO’s Baltimore crime drama, “The Wire,” and “Treme.” He sat through auditions for nearly 200 actors. He and Mr. Overmyer and the director, Jim McKay, talked to 20 actors for the role of Harry, and hired their early favorite, Mr. Welliver, a veteran character actor who’s had recent recurring roles on “Sons of Anarchy” and “The Good Wife.” Mr. Connelly went to prop and wardrobe meetings, and vetoed one sweater that he deemed too stylish for Bosch. He brought in three LAPD homicide detectives and a forensic anthropologist to consult on details like how investigators would unearth a fragile skeleton that had been buried for 20 years.
Still, Mr. Connelly risks alienating some hard-core Bosch fans. On an Amazon discussion forum earlier this year, titled “Is there really anyone who can play Hieronymus Bosch?,” readers debated the merits of actors from George Clooney and Mark Ruffalo to Russell Crowe and Hugh Laurie. “All the good ones are dead or too old,” groused one fan.
The show also diverges from the books. In the books, Bosch ages in real time, and is now 63. In the show, Bosch is nearly 20 years younger, and the setting is contemporary. But the pilot, like the books, is character-driven, unlike a typical network police procedural. The plot draws from two different Bosch books, his 2002 novel “City of Bones,” which features an investigation into a boy’s death 20 years earlier, and his 1994 novel “The Concrete Blonde,” in which Harry is put on trial. Through his court testimony, the writers were able to get him to open up about his back story without resorting to voice-overs or forced exposition. “As one character in the books describes Bosch, he’s kind of glum and doesn’t say much,” said Mr. Overmyer on the set. “That’s kind of tough for TV.”
On the final day of production last week, it took roughly four hours to shoot the 10-second opening shot up on the hill in Echo Park. Cameramen cursed quietly as they pushed heavy equipment up the steep hill to capture the shot from a different angle. The next morning, Mr. Connelly was flying to London to start his book tour for his new Mickey Haller novel, “The Gods of Guilt,” which Little, Brown will release on Dec. 2.
The crew packed up to shoot the next scene in Mariachi Plaza, a popular spot for mariachi bands and skateboarders, and where Bosch followed the killer. Mr. Connelly’s lawyer and agent both arrived at the set with a film contract from Lakeshore to turn “The Gods of Guilt” into a “Lincoln Lawyer” sequel. Mr. Connelly signed the contract, then returned to the set to watch Bosch stalk a serial killer.
By Alexandra Alter