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Steve Kloves Knows He Owes Rod Serling

from the article  A WIZARD OF HOLLYWOOD 
By Michael Sragow ... Read the full article in Salon.com

THE BACKSTORY
...Steve Kloves, screenwriter for Curtis Hanson's new "Wonder Boys," takes on Hollywood's hottest property -- boy wonder Harry Potter...

...After 19 years in the business, [Steve Kloves] has all of four credits. He wrote the beautifully acted Sean Penn-Nicolas Cage coming-of-age movie "Racing With the Moon" (1984). He wrote and directed the classic contemporary romance (but box-office fizzle) "The Fabulous Baker Boys" (1988) and the peculiar Texas-noir-cum-Greek-tragedy "Flesh and Bone" (1993), which gave Gwyneth Paltrow a career boost. 

And he's written a marvelous new comedy, "Wonder Boys," from Michael Chabon's spiky and enchanting novel...

THE EXCERPT
Kloves calls his early inspirations "curious." Rod Serling heads the list, not only because Kloves loved "The Twilight Zone" (and one chilling episode of "Night Gallery") but also because Serling was the only writer who introduced his own work on TV. 

"He was a compelling presence," says Kloves. "When you watch entertainment as a kid you don't even think that someone wrote it. I thought Steve McQueen just made his stuff up and they turned the camera on. But Rod Serling put it right in front of you: 'I'm the guy who wrote what you're about to see.' He made being a writer real for me."