Monday, January 2, 2012

Charles Beaumont Born Today 1929

Born today in the barely conceivable year of 1929, Charles Beaumont is one of the forgotten figures in horror/science fiction/fantasy. Well, not at Too Much Horror Fiction! I originally featured Beaumont here. You can also watch his many episodes of "The Twilight Zone" on Netflix Instant. You ever find one of his vintage paperbacks in a used bookstore, buy it. I've got a few, but not these (Yonder, a collection from 1958, is especially desired):

1982 collection

Novel 1959 (Corman adapted the '62 movie, a Shatner film before "Star Trek")

1961. Grantland was a Beaumont pseudonym


18 comments:

AndyDecker said...

He is one of the great writers. He also wrote the screenplays for Premature Burial and Masque of the Red Death, which may be the best movie Corman ever did.

Will Errickson said...

Yep, Andy, you may be right about the Corman movies! If you haven't seen NIGHT OF THE EAGLE, aka BURN WITCH BURN (1964), you should; Beaumont and Richard Matheson adapted the Fritz Leiber classic CONJURE WIFE.

Jeff P said...

The only book of his I have is 'The Magic Man'. Never seen a real, live copy of 'Yonder'.

Will Errickson said...

Wow, how'd I forget I have a copy of MAGIC MAN as well?!

Mac Campbell said...

With a name like that, you could resurrect him and put him in a Stephen King novel!

Will Errickson said...

Beaumont... yeah, wasn't that the main character in THE DARK HALF?

Mac Campbell said...

Thad Beaumont. But King always likes the Anglo first names and the french/acadian last names : Thad Beaumont, Teddy Duchamps, Steve Deschaine, Roland Deschaine, Rita Desjardin. There must be a technique to naming characters: all of king's have a certain ring to their names.

And for Storm of the Century, he said the name Andre Linoge had a real mystical significance.

Will Errickson said...

And Andy Dufresne! Wow, I'd never realized that before. I hazard a guess that there are lots of French-Canadians in Maine. There was a massacre at a saloon that catered to them in IT, wasn't there?

Will Errickson said...

There was, I don't know why I'm framing that as a question.

Rabid Fox said...

Definitely loved all his stuff on the Twilight Zone, though it's really unfortunate his health deteriorated such that he needed others to help with some of those stories. Still one of the greats, though.

Ron Clinton said...

I'm a huge of Beaumont's work. I have all his books (including YONDER) -- even a signed 1st HC of THE HUNGER AND OTHER STORIES -- and those that reprint his work (SELECTED STORIES (Dark Harvest), A TOUCH OF THE CREATURE (Sub Press), et al). I also recently picked up the DVD documentary that examines his life and work. I understand that a bio (book) is being shopped around as well, so hopefully that'll soon see the light of day.

Jeff P said...

@Ron: "...even a signed 1st HC of THE HUNGER AND OTHER STORIES..." Jealous!!!

To answer Will's question, there are a lot of people of French Canadian descent here in Maine.

highwayknees said...

@Ron Clinton: What? there's a DVD about Beaumont?!I wonder where I'd find it? Probably not on Netflix. I'd love to see that!
i collected all his works as a kid too.And Especialy love that cover of YONDER.Those were the best years,(60's 70's), for finding great stuff in used bookstores.

highwayknees said...

And my favorite story of his is called: "Miss Gentibelle". So heartbreaking and creepy too! Almost has a Southern flavor a la Capote or Williams.

Ron Clinton said...

highwayknees: Yes, it's called "Charles Beaumont: The Short Life of Twilight Zone's Magic Man" and the Director's Cut DVD can be bought here:

http://jasunni.mybigcommerce.com/charles-beaumont-the-short-life-of-twilight-zones-magic-man-directors-cut-dvd/

It's more a labor of love than a slick production, particularly when it comes to audio production, but it's fascinating and rewarding viewing for any Beaumont fan.

Ron Clinton said...

Incidentally, Jeff, here is an image of my signed Beaumont HC 1st of HUNGER:

http://home.comcast.net/~clinton65/IMG_4719a.jpg

gef the talking mongoose said...

@highwayknees -- I think I've read somewhere that "Miss Gentilbelle" was his first story. What a helluva way to break in!

I have a vague recollection of its being the first story in the first PB of Beaumont's that I owned, THE MAGIC MAN, so it'd also be the first thing of his I ever laid eyes on. What a great intro to his oeuvre that collection is ... "Black Country" *almost* makes me give a damn about jazz, which is quite an accomplishment.

I do own YONDER, though offhand I have no idea where I came across my copy. Ditto for THE HUNGER, assuming I still do have that one. NIGHT RIDE has eluded me for all these decades, though. Used to own the hardcover of INTRUDER, but it never came back from Arizona (along with 99+ percent of the rest of a sizable book collection) after I got divorced in '85, though at least I do have the paperback edition pictured above.

-- Dan

Unknown said...

We've updated our store URL to order the Charles Beaumont documentary. You can order it at http://www.jasunnistore.com. Also, we're running a special coupon - LOVEAGEEK for 15% off for Valentine's day.