Mark Harris was on the Leonard Lopate Show recently, talking about Hollywood shaped World War II and vice versa. He also told us what about his perfect meal of comfort food.
What have you read or seen over the past year (book, play, film, etc…) that moved or surprised you?
I spend a lot of time covering the Oscars every year, and one movie I really loved was Spike Jonze’s Her, which just was Best Original Screenplay. I’m also a big admirer of James McBride’s novel, The Good Lord Bird. And Annie Baker’s play The Flick blew me away.
What are you listening to right now?
Vampire Weekend. But the truth is, I don’t even know where my earbuds are. I can’t write if music is on. And my music taste runs to ‘70s R&B and early disco, so maybe the less said here the better.
What’s the last great book you read?
Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens. His last completed novel – I’ve been trying to work my way through Dickens, so it’s taken me a long time to get to this. In nonfiction I am in the middle of Doris Kearns Goodwin’s The Bully Pulpit and can’t put it down.
What’s one thing you’re a fan of that people might not expect?
I wear my weird tastes all over Twitter. So I’m not sure what would surprise people – except maybe that, given my extremely liberal politics, I’m a huge fan of James Ellroy, the crime writer, who on all available evidence would find my politics as horrible as I find his.
What’s your favorite comfort food?
A perfect cheeseburger. Followed by chocolate cake. Followed by shame.