This interview was conducted on December 2nd, 2011. It was my final project for my fundamentals of journalism class at La Salle University. I have not seen the film yet but I wish Matt the best. The interview began with an e-mail and then finished on the phone.
Matt Quick’s Silver Lining
A dark room. A locked door to prevent any interruptions. Matthew Quick sits down at his desk and prepares to unleash his emotions on the blank page in front of him.
“It’s pretty intense” he says after discussing his isolative writing process.
Quick, a LaSalle alum and published author, is having his first book The Silver Linings Playbook turned into a movie. Produced by the legendary Weinstein Company and directed by Quick’s hero David O. Russell, the film is adapted from one of Quick’s most personal writings.
Born in the Germantown area and raised in New Jersey, Quick nurtured his writing passion from a very young age and continued through his time at La Salle. Although he felt uncomfortable being vocal about his literary pursuits, the aspiring wordsmith was always testing his skills by engaging in poetry contests and other competitions. Receiving encouragement from famous peers and professors alike, the secondary education major cast aside his doubts and knew this was the field he was destined for.
“I wanted to write a book about what was important to me: where I came from, father/son relationships and football.” Quick said discussing the development of Silver Linings.
His devotion to his craft inspired him to quit his job and focus full time on his story. Writing in his in-laws basement, Quick was able to infuse a lot of personal struggles into the novel’s protagonist. The author had it rough but his impressive amount of perseverance shone through helping get his novel published. That same indomitable determination helped him get a movie.
“When I was writing Silver Linings, It felt like a film. Deep in the back of my head I thought I could see David O. Russell as its perfect director, “Quick said with relish after knowing his predictions had come true.
Utilizing his literary agent Doug Stewart, Quick started sending out his script summary to all the major power players in Hollywood. The novelist’s spec script sat in development hell for years. Being used to the speedier publishing process, Quick was disappointed that his most personal piece was not getting noticed but he refused to give up. He knew this could be a good movie and one call on a fateful night in Vermont proved that.
“I was at a party with my wife when Doug called and told me to make sure I was sitting down. “ Quick did what Doug said bracing for the news his trusted agent was about to deliver.
Doug put him on speakerphone and the infamous Harvey Weinstein came on and told him they loved the script. Weinstein and his company wanted to develop the script more with Quick’s idol David O. Russell helming the picture with major movie star Mark Wahlberg as the lead. Although Quick would have liked to write the shooting script, he felt comfortable leaving it in the hands of his favorite director.
The path to become a full-fledged author is perilous but can be filled with amazing opportunities. Quick said he had to endure some hard struggles but it was all worth it. The writer’s final piece of advice to any fellow explorers seeking to become the next big thing? “If you want to make it, you’re going to figure out how to get it done. Just stay focused and work hard.” As you can see, this paid off for Quick. Now, the rest of his story is still waiting to be told.