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Fitzgerald on (and in) film

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Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby" treads a well-worn path in HollywoodBy Glenn KennySpecial to MSN Movies"There are no second acts in American lives." F. Scott Fitzgerald said that, or rather he wrote it, and ever since he wrote it, pretty much every thumb-sucker about American life has resorted to quoting it. The observation was a note, and it was apparently a widely misunderstood one, and even so it's an ironic one, because Fitzgerald himself was not yet 45 when he died of a heart attack in 1940, trying to make a living as a screenwriter in Hollywood.He had been a young literary lion. Well before the empty phrase "voice of a generation" entered the lingua franca, the three novels he published in the 1920s ("This Side of Paradise," "The Beautiful and the Damned" and, of course, "The Great Gatsby") showed a heedless side of the so-called "Lost Generation" and immortalized the Jazz Age. Once his own fortunes faded and his alcoholism deepened, he found himself a forgotten man, and he died before he could see the several revivals his reputation underwent, not to mention the acknowledgement of "Gatsby" as an immortal classic of American literature.Bing: More about 'The Great Gatsby' | More on Leonardo DiCaprioFor more movie news, follow MSN Movies on Facebook and Twitter. "The Great Gatsby" is out in theaters May 10.(Warner Bros. Pictures)
© Warner Bros. Pictures
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