National Book Awards Novel-to-Screen Film Festival

Images from the 2013 Novel-to-Screen Film Festival

Photo credit: Deborah Meehan


Featuring three films based on National Book Award-nominated books:
“Lolita,” “Hugo,” and “The Cool World”

April 4-5, 2013
Pratt Manhattan
144 West 14th Street
2nd Floor, Room 213
New York City

All screenings are free and open to the public, but seats are limited. To reserve your seat, send an email to Sherrie Young at with “RSVP for Novel-to-Screen” in the subject line.

“Lolita” - Thursday, April 4 at 6:30 p.m. (156 minutes)

Lolita was written by Vladimir Nabokov and nominated for a National Book Award in Fiction in 1959. The film was directed by Stanley Kubrick and released in 1962. With a screenplay by Vladimir Nabokov, Stanley Kubrick (uncredited), and James Harris (uncredited), the film stars James Mason, Shelley Winters, Sue Lyon, and Peter Sellers.

Panel discussion to follow screening.


Harold Augenbraum is the Executive Director of the National Book Foundation, the organization that presents the National Book Awards. He has published seven books on Latino literature of the United States, including Lengua Fresca (2006, with Ilan Stavans) and, with five colleagues, the Norton Anthology of U.S. Latino Literature (2010). In March 2013, Penguin published his edition of The Collected Poems of Marcel Proust. He has taught U.S. Latino literature at Amherst College and often writes on the future of literary reading and publishing.


Lisabeth During teaches in the Department of Social Science and Cultural Studies at Pratt Institute and writes on film, aesthetics, and European philosophy. She was educated in the United States and the United Kingdom, and taught for many years at the University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia, where she was in the Department of Philosophy and on the Board of Directors of the Performance Space. Most recently publishing in the area of film and philosophy, her co-edited collection Belief in Cinema: Revising Themes from Bazin has just come out in Angelaki (2013). She is completing a book titled The Chastity Plot: Studies in an Ascetic Ideal for University of Chicago Press.

Vincent LoBrutto is a film instructor in the Department of Film, Video, and Animation at the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan. He is the author of numerous books on filmmaking and received the 2011 Robert Wise Award for journalistic excellence from the American Cinema Editors Society. His published works for ABC-CLIO include Becoming Film Literate: The Art and Craft of Motion Pictures; Gus Van Sant: His Own Private Cinema; and Martin Scorsese: A Biography.


Erich Kuersten is the liberal arts advisor at Pratt Institute and the editor of the Acidemic Journal of Film and Media. His other writing credits include: Bright Lights Film Journal and PopMatters, as well as in the following blogs: Scarlet Street, The Decadent Handbook, Slashfood, McSweeney’s, and the Daily Om. His short films include “The Lacan Hour,” “Queen of Disks,” and the “Shortcuts to Enlightenment” series.

“Hugo” - Friday, April 5 at 3:30 p.m. (126 minutes)

The Invention of Hugo Cabret was written by Brian Selznick and nominated for a National Book Award in Young People’s Literature in 2007. The film “Hugo” was directed by Martin Scorsese and released in 2011. With a screenplay by John Logan, the film stars Asa Butterfiled, Chloe Grace Moretz, and Christopher Lee.

Panel discussion to follow screening.


Peter Patchen is the Chairperson of Digital Arts at Pratt. He has lectured nationally and internationally; In addition to a recent solo exhibition at Sweet Lorraine Gallery in Brooklyn, he has exhibited at the Beecher Center for Technology in the Arts at the Butler Institute of American Art, Siggraph Art Exhibitions, Luco Film Festival (Rome), Kalisaar Computer Art Exhibition (Tel-Aviv), and various other solo and group exhibitions. Recent work includes 3D printed sculpture, interactive artworks, prints, web-based art, and mixed media pieces.


Monica Edinger is a familiar presence in the world of children's literature and the author of several books for educators. She contributes to a variety of publications, including The New York Times Book Review and The Horn Book Magazine in addition to blogging at “educating alice” and “The Huffington Post.” She has helped select the winners of several awards, including the Newbery, and originated and co-runs School Library Journal's Battle of the Kids' Books. Her first book for children, Africa is My Home: A Child on the Amistad, will be out from Candlewick Press this fall. A committed educator, Monica began her teaching career as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Sierra Leone and currently teaches fourth grade at the Dalton School in New York City.

Brian Selznick is the author/illustrator of the #1 New York Times bestselling novels The Invention of Hugo Cabret and Wonderstruck. "Hugo," the 3D major motion picture directed by Martin Scorsese and based on The Invention of Hugo Cabret, won five Academy Awards. His books have received many awards and distinctions, including being nominated for a National Book Award in Young People’s Literature and the Caldecott Medal for The Invention of Hugo Cabret, and a Caldecott Honor for The Dinosaurs of Waterhouse Hawkins. He divides his time between Brooklyn, New York and La Jolla, California.

“The Cool World” - Friday, April 5 at 7:00 p.m. (105 minutes)

The Cool World was written by Warren Miller and nominated for a National Book Award in Fiction in 1960. The film was directed by Shirley Clarke and released in 1964. With a screenplay by Shirley Clarke and Carl Lee, the film stars Hampton “Rony” Clanton, Carl Lee, Yolanda Rodriguez, and Clarence Williams III.

Panel discussion to follow screening.


Ethan Spigland is an Associate Professor of Humanities and Media Studies at Pratt. He received a maitrise from the University of Paris VIII and has made numerous films and media works, including “Luminosity Porosity,” based on the work of architect Steven Holl, and “Elevator Moods,” featured in the Sundance Film Festival. He is also one of the curators for this event and the co-director of The Pratt Film Society.


Hampton “Rony” Clanton is an actor who played Duke, the lead character in “The Cool World.” His other film appearances include “The Royal Tenenbaums” (2001) and “Devil’s Advocate” (1997). In television, he appeared on “Boardwalk Empire” (seasons 1-3). Clanton has also acted on Broadway and Off Broadway.

Craig S. Harris is an established trombonist who has performed all over the world and has recorded numerous albums. He first played alongside baritone saxophonist Pat Patrick in Sun Ra's Arkestra for two years. He has been a member of many major groups; such as, David Murray's Octet and the Beaver Harris-Don Pullen 360 Degree Musical Experience. He has played for Lena Horne in her Broadway orchestra for a year and has performed with Cecil Taylor.

Amy Taubin is a film critic and a contributing editor for film magazines Sight & Sound and Film Comment, and a frequent contributor to Artforum and Taubin is also a filmmaker, curator, and educator.

Film Festival Curators:

Deborah Meehan is a professor of Film and Video at Pratt. She has worked as an art director, editor, director, writer, and producer. She has directed and produced her own short films as well as for numerous clients, including The BBC, The Whitney Museum, and PBS. She is the co-director of The Pratt Film Society.

Tracie Morris is a Professor of Humanities and Media Studies and Coordinator of Performance and Performance Studies at Pratt Institute. She's a poet, performer, and theorist from Brooklyn, New York whose work includes text, sound, and installation. Her most recent book is Rhyme Scheme, published by Zasterle Press.