First Run Features presents
Michael Caplan's Documentary Feature


Premieres January 11 on Apple TV, iTunes & Vimeo On Demand

Interviews Available with Filmmaker Michael Caplan
The new feature documentary ALGREN is a journey through the gritty world, brilliant mind, and noble heart of Nelson Algren.

Exploding onto the national scene in 1950 after winning the first-ever National Book Award for The Man with the Golden Arm,
Algren defined post-war American urban fiction with his gritty, brilliant depiction of working class Chicago.

Hemingway declared him second only to Faulkner; Vonnegut dubbed him a literary groundbreaker. Hollywood soon came calling, immortalizing his breakout novel with none other than Frank Sinatra in the lead role.
Algren even won a notorious place in both the heart and work of France’s premiere feminist, Simone de Beauvoir.

Including never-before-seen archival footage, newly uncovered audio recordings and his own rarely seen, personal photo collages, ALGREN charts the rise and fall of a man whose transgressions, compassion and thirst for justice pushed him to dedicate his life and career to giving a voice to the voiceless. Through interviews with Algren’s friends, literary experts and artists – including William Friedkin, Russell Banks, Philip Kaufman, Billy Corgan and John Sayles – the film is an intimate, witty and even antagonistic portrait of a tireless champion of America’s most marginalized.
"Enlightening for those who don't know Algren at all and thrilling for those who knew the man or his work and his life."
-Rick Kogan, Chicago Tribune

"A riveting, comprehensive depiction of an author that
Ernest Hemingway declared second only to William Faulkner
in the pantheon of U.S. writers."

-Duane Byrge, The Hollywood Reporter

"An extraordinary portrait of a major author who has fallen into the realm of the forgotten despite his many successes."
-Neeley Swanson, Easy Reader News
Bio of Director Michael Caplan

Michael Caplan is an award-winning Chicago-based independent film director, producer and educator. He is currently developing several feature films, including a film written by acclaimed Chicago writer, Joe Meno, and a documentary series that illustrates the connection between the smallest microbes in the ocean to climate change and worldwide pandemics. Caplan also directed and wrote Stones from the Soil, a documentary about his father's escape from the Nazis, which showed on national PBS. Caplan is an Associate Professor in the Cinema and Television Arts Department at Columbia College Chicago.
A film by Michael Caplan
Premieres January 11, 2022 on Apple TV, iTunes & Vimeo On Demand
85 minutes | color | In English
Optional English captions for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

For a screening link and more information please
contact Kelly Hargraves:
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