Picks and Pans Review: From Judging Amy to Facing the Oscar Jury

updated 02/27/2006 at 01:00 AM EST

originally published 02/27/2006 01:00AM

Dan Futterman Dan Futterman's acting résumé includes Judging Amy and Will & Grace. But Futterman, 38, got an Oscar nod for a screenplay: Capote.

HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO WRITE CAPOTE? Six long years. Without my wife, Anya Epstein, a writer [Commander in Chief], I might not have succeeded. I met her when I was beginning to work on Capote. It wasn't easy, but she was patient and supportive.

WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE TRUMAN CAPOTE BOOK? Breakfast at Tiffany's. I liked In Cold Blood, but the most interesting character, Truman Capote, isn't in it. You could feel him behind the scenes, but he's hidden. That's the reason I wrote the screenplay—I wanted to show how ambition got the better of him. It's a cautionary tale.

YOU MADE THE MOVIE WITH TWO PALS Bennett Miller [Capote's director], Philip Seymour Hoffman [its star] and I met at a theater workshop when we were 16. We were in touch, but Capote brought us closer. I'd work with them again in a minute.

WHAT'S BETTER: ACTING OR WRITING? I want to do both. Acting is all about your character; writing gives you a global view. I know a bit about acting. With writing, I have a lot to learn.

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