The writer of ''A Long Way Down'' continues to balance humor and melancholy

By EW Staff
Updated June 17, 2005 at 04:00 AM EDT

Age 48

Mustworthiness On the heels of three successful book-to-movie experiences — Fever Pitch (twice!), High Fidelity, and About a Boy — the British author continues to balance humor and melancholy with the just-released Long Way, in which four potential suicides meet on a rooftop on New Year’s Eve and change their minds. (This one will likely go Hollywood too — Warner Bros. recently bought the rights.)

On His Must List Marilynne Robinson’s Gilead, a novel in the form of a letter from an Iowa preacher to his young son. ”I started to have dreams about it after the first few nights. It’s an incredibly wise book that I can imagine starting again the moment I finish it.”

Next A film not based on one of his books: romantic comedy Fast Forward, which he’s writing with Emma Thompson.