HYPERGRAPHIA is a narrative feature recounting the true story of the notorious Boston eccentric and recluse Arthur Crew Inman (1895-1963) and of The Inman Diary he created. Published by Harvard University Press, Inman’s gargantuan diary is one of the great literary curiosities of our age, a sprawling memory piece of more than 17 million words. A black comedy of epic proportions, the screenplay is a tightly wound biographical journey with documentary elements drawn from the extensive Inman Collection at Harvard. Historical scenes evoking world events of the first half of the 20th century (stock footage, news headlines, period movie montages) will be integrated with events from the entire 68 years of Inman’s life and a good deal of human history in between, – a sort of March of Time with Arthur Inman as self-appointed narrator.
Intense dream imagery (Arthur’s vivid nightmares and fantasies – composites of live action, stock footage, digital graphics & animation), will provide a highly visual and cinematic element to counter the many interior scenes required at Garrison Hall. The film will possess a highly adaptable structure that will give it a dynamic style within a disciplined, forward-moving narrative, free from the restrictions of the documentary form while still retaining the essential factual aspects, that all this is absolutely true. These people really existed. These events really happened.
In addition to focusing on Inman’s extreme hypochondria and obsession with “this record of my days and nights behind plate glass”, “HYPERGRAPHIA” investigates one of the most unusual marriages on record.Evelyn Yates stayed wedded to Arthur Inman for 40 years, truly the survival of the fittest. She remains, despite much torment, loyal and occasionally loving towards her distraught spouse. She even helps him procure young girls and other paid “talkers & readers” from newspaper ads, (“…to amuse an invalid author”), while carrying on her own 30-year affair with Arthur’s favorite osteopath Dr. Cyrus Rumford Pike, a first-class healer and medical snake-in-the grass.
By December 5, 1963, Garrison Hall has become a fortress against the ravages of time and urban renewal. More terrified than ever of leaving his rooms, Arthur is haunted by the breakup of his marriage, the seeming futility of maintaining his diary, by the threat of nuclear oblivion. Confronted with the magnitude of his own folly, with modern life exploding all around him, Arthur Inman manages one final act of resistance before sinking deeper into the parallel universe of his diary.
Starring John Hurt as Arthur Inman
Written and directed by Lorenzo DeStefano
Produced by Anwen Rees-Myers