When Robert Redford first called me about wanting to make the movie, he asked me if I wanted to write the screenplay. It wasn’t exactly an offer and I think he must have been greatly relieved when I said I didn’t. The truth is, I simply felt too close to the material to be sufficiently ruthless with it in the way that a screen adaptation usually requires. Also I didn’t relish the idea of being fired after a couple of drafts, which is what normally happens. So I wasn’t involved in the making of the movie.
My family and I were in Montana during the summer the movie was being shot and Robert Redford kindly invited us to the set for a day which was fun. We met Kristin and Scarlet who were wonderful in the movie. But basically Robert Redford did his own thing, just got on and made the movie. He was very courteous and would occasionally call me and tell me what was going on.
When I first saw the movie in LA in the spring of 1998 I was blown away by the opening scene and liked the first half very much. When the action moves to Montana, the horse work, I thought, was stunning. And the setting and landscape look gorgeous. I was less keen on the second half of the movie. I thought it got a little lost. But then, being the writer of the book, I’m probably the least well qualified person on earth to judge. I can still see the movie and enjoy it.
Watch the Movie
You can buy or rent The Horse Whisperer movie in various formats at these online locations:
Barnes & Noble