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Ball, Alan (b. 1957)  
page: 1  2  3  

The lovers were not only reunited, but in time became the adoptive parents of two boys. For his sensitive and authentic depiction of gay people Ball won the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation's Stephen Kolzak Award in 2002.

Since the end of the run of Six Feet Under, Ball has undertaken several other projects. He optioned the screen rights to Alicia Erian's disturbing novel Towelhead, the tale of Jasira, a thirteen-year-old girl. Denied emotional support from either her cruel father or her vindictive divorced mother, she is desperate for affection and thus only too vulnerable to the advances of men intrigued by her burgeoning sexuality. Ball wrote the screenplay and is directing the film, as yet untitled, which is expected to be released in 2007.

Ball has returned to the theater with All That I Ever Will Be (2007). Set in Los Angeles, the play follows the development of a relationship between Omar, an immigrant from the Middle East who has a day job at a chain store and hustles at night, and Dwight, one of his clients, who comes from wealth and squanders much of his money on drugs. Charles Isherwood of the New York Times called All That I Ever Will Be "a slick entry in the sick-soul-of-society genre, concerning the futile search for connection among characters who crave intimacy even as they build cinder-block walls around their damaged hearts."

Ball also has another television series in the works. True Blood, slated to air on HBO in the fall of 2007, will be based on the vampire novels of Charlaine Harris, which are set in Bon Temps, Louisiana, a fictional town outside of Shreveport.

In Harris's books, vampires, thanks to the development of a synthetic product called True Blood, no longer need to prey on humans and so have "come out of the coffin," assert themselves as a visible part of society, and become financially successful, notably as the owners of trendy bars since the working hours fit their necessarily nocturnal habits.

Ball has discouraged comparisons to Anne Rice's New Orleans vampire novels, saying of Harris's work, "It's not Gothic in the way that Rice is. It's contemporary rural America, white trashy, very funny, and real scary."

He added that "vampires are a great metaphor for minority groups that struggle for rights and recognition, but also for Republicans, in that they're vicious and bloodthirsty and will destroy anything that gets in their way."

Linda Rapp

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arts >> Overview:  American Television, Drama

American television has made significant strides in its portrayal of homosexuals in dramatic series and movies, but cable networks have been more daring than the "big three" broadcast networks.

arts >> Overview:  American Television, Situation Comedies

American television sitcoms have consistently reflected the presence of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered people, often in distorted and stereotyped ways, but occasionally in ways that acknowledge our humanity and complexity.

arts >> Overview:  Film

Since cinema began, Hollywood has been fascinated with finding ways of representing homosexuality.

arts >> Overview:  Film Directors

Gay, lesbian, and bisexual film directors have been a vital creative presence in cinema since the medium's inception over one hundred years ago.

arts >> Overview:  Screenwriters

Although film may be a director's rather than a writer's medium, gay and lesbian screenwriters have made significant contributions to both mainstream and independent film.

arts >> Overview:  Subjects of the Visual Arts: Vampires

From its inception in the nineteenth century, the artistic vampire has been linked with homosexuality, a connection that has been explored in a number of films.

social sciences >> Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD)

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) is a watchdog group dedicated to promoting accurate representations of the glbtq community in the media.

arts >> Star, Darren

Responsible for such pop culture touchstones as Beverly Hills, 90210, Melrose Place, and Sex and the City, writer-director-producer Darren Star has had a prolific career in television.

literature >> Tobias, Andrew

Financial writer Andrew Tobias, the author of the classic coming out memoir The Best Little Boy in the World (1973), was elected Treasurer of the Democratic Party in 1999.


"'American Beauty' Screenwriter Conducts Case Study at the IPF/West Screenwriters Conference." Inside Film Magazine (March 2000).

Carr, Jay. "'Beauty' Is Biting Look at America." Boston Globe (September 17, 1999): C4.

Clinton, Paul. "Diggin' Six Feet Under." The Advocate (July 3, 2001): 50.

Ellis, Hazel. "On the Ball." (2000).

Isherwood, Charles. "When Boy Meets Hustler, Some Personal Truths Are Sure to Emerge." New York Times (February 7, 2007): E5.

Longino, Bob. "The 72nd Academy Awards: Beauty Maker; Former Mariettan Alan Ball and His Highly Praised Screenplay May Come up Smelling Like a Rose at Tonight's Show." Atlanta Journal and Constitution (March 26, 2000): 1L.

Millar, Jeff. "The Rise and Fall of Everyman; 'American Beauty' Proves Potent Family Portrayal." Houston Chronicle (September 24, 1999): Houston, 1.

Murray, Steve. "Screenplay Salvation: 'Beauty' Marietta Native's Catharsis." Atlanta Journal and Constitution (September 30, 1999): 1C.

Podeswa, Jeremy. "Six Feet Over." The Advocate (June 21, 2005): 154-156.

Potton, Ed. "Yes, There Can Be Life after Death." The Times (London) (April 1, 2006): 42.

Uhles, Steven. "Play Shows Darker Side of Weddings." Augusta Chronicle (Georgia) (December 6, 2002): D2.


    Citation Information
    Author: Rapp, Linda  
    Entry Title: Ball, Alan  
    General Editor: Claude J. Summers  
    Publication Name: glbtq: An Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual,
Transgender, and Queer Culture
    Publication Date: 2007  
    Date Last Updated February 12, 2007  
    Web Address  
    Publisher glbtq, Inc.
1130 West Adams
Chicago, IL   60607
    Today's Date  
    Encyclopedia Copyright: © 2002-2006, glbtq, Inc.  
    Entry Copyright © 2007 glbtq, Inc.  


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