Beyond the Book: Background information when reading The Looking Glass Wars

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The Looking Glass Wars

by Frank Beddor

The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor X
The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor
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  • First Published:
    Sep 2006, 384 pages

    Paperback:
    Aug 2007, 400 pages

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Beyond the Book

This article relates to The Looking Glass Wars

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Frank Beddor is not your average first time author. He's just published the second in his Looking Glass trilogy (Seeing Red), published a spin-off comic in December 2005 about the character of Hatter Madigan (Hatter M illustrated by Ben Templesmith), is working on a video game (set in Wonderland during the 13-year-reign of Queen Redd, which is barely touched on in the book), and is in talks about a movie trilogy which, undoubtedly, would lead to countless merchandising opportunities.

Which begs the question, who is Frank Beddor? According to his publisher's bio he runs Automatic Pictures (a film, television, and interactive game company) and was the producer of the hit comedy There’s Something About Mary. Before that, he was the first International Ski Federation World Cup Champion in combined freestyle skiing, which led to a job performing the ski stunts in the movies Hot Dog and the cult classic John Cusack film, Better off Dead, and to relatively minor acting roles in other movies/shows. He lives in Los Angeles, California and has a young son, Luc.

In an interview with IGN.com (a popular computer game website) Beddor describes his background as follows: "I grew up in a theater town, in Minneapolis. The Gottfried Theater was in my backyard. My mother was really into theater. I had this aspiration to be an actor. But then, I was a skier. As a young kid, I cared about sports and was a lot more driven by sports. That got me onto the United States ski team and I had some success there. Eventually that led to my acting career, my "failed" acting career. What came out of that failure was that I was introduced to some really great teachers (Stella Adler, Larry Moss), and I started reading all sorts of playwrights. Not only did you need to read the plays, you'd have to read the biographies of the playwright to start to understand and feel the themes of their lives and how those themes and experiences influenced their writing. You had to dissect that and articulate that."

The somewhat star-struck IGN interviewer describes meeting Beddor in his office high above Wilshire Boulevard in Los Angeles, where the 14-foot high office walls "are covered in literally hundreds of visual cues for The Looking Glass Wars universe. There's a photo here, a magazine article ripped from the pages there, single words clipped from newspapers, pictures of actors, locations both historical and commonplace, colors and images all mashed together. The office feels like a collage you might find at a crazed inventor's house or a frenzied musician's or, at the very least, someone who deeply cares about and is decidedly immersed in the world they created."

Beddor admits to hating Alice in Wonderland as a child, thinking it was a girl's book - "I respect the wit, writing, and imagination, don't get me wrong, but I didn't enjoy them like I enjoyed Treasure Island or The Hardy Boys or Johnny Quest."

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This "beyond the book article" relates to The Looking Glass Wars. It originally ran in October 2006 and has been updated for the August 2007 paperback edition. Go to magazine.

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