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'Dead letters on the dead page'

3 January 2005

'I feel there is an opportunity for this really magical, symbolic contact between people separated by time and space, that you can get with the written word, that you can't get any other way.

There is no way, really, for someone to make a movie all by himself or herself, that will then be distributed and enjoyed by completely solitary individuals. I think the magic of these dead letters on the dead page is that once you surmount the difficulty of deciphering those characters, there is no boundary.

I feel closer to Kafka and Tolstoy than I do to Steven Spielberg, and I think there's nothing Spielberg could do to make me feel otherwise.'

Jonathan Franzen, author of the The Corrections, on the BBC