The godfather of Brit noir: cult crime writer Ted Lewis is due a renaissance

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When he died in 1982, he was remembered in the literary world – if at all – solely as the man who “wrote that film with Michael Caine”

Ben Myers / New Statesman

When he died in 1982 at the age of 42, the novelist Ted Lewis had achieved some success in “that London” but now lived with his mother in his north Lincolnshire home town of Barton-upon-Humber. He did the rounds of the town’s pubs each night, occasionally playing piano, then tramping home across muddy fields and ditches, or often deposited on the doorstep. He was remembered in the wider literary world – if he was remembered at all – solely as the man who “wrote that film with Michael Caine”, the Newcastle-set cinematic masterpiece Get Carter. Lewis’s novel was actually called Jack’s Return Home, and was set in Scunthorpe – his involvement in the film was minimal. Though Mike Hodges’s adaptation was entirely faithful to the wonderfully grubby tone of the text, a decade later its creator was reduced to a mere footnote in the film’s journey towards cult-dom…

Read the full piece here.

 

 

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