Despite the novel winning the Pulitzer Prize, the studios were not interested in buying up the film rights as they deemed it lacking in action, there was no love story and the villain doesn't get a big comeuppance. Producer Alan J. Pakula disagreed however and persuaded director Robert Mulligan that it would make a good film. Together they were able to convince Gregory Peck who readily agreed.
Truman Capote, who grew up with Harper Lee, also knew the inspiration for "Boo" Radley, and had planned to base a character on him in one of his short stories. After seeing how well the character was realized in Lee's novel, however, he decided against it.
Director Robert Mulligan learned quickly not to rely on excessive takes as he found that the more takes that were required, the less spontaneous and natural his child actors became. |