The Electric Typewriter

Great articles and essays by the world's best journalists and writers.

20 Great Articles that Became Films

Great journalism and narrative nonfiction that inspired Hollywood


What I Did on My Summer Vacation
by Scott Anderson (The Hunting Party)

In which three American journalists try to get a little R&R in Bosnia, accidentally almost capture the world’s most-wanted war criminal

The Man Who Knew Too Much by Marie Brenner
(The Insider)

Hailed as a hero by anti-smoking forces and vilified by big tobacco, Wigand played a central role in and epic multibillion- dollar struggle.

The Muse of Coyote Ugly Saloon by Elizabeth Gilbert (Coyote Ugly)

I gave a lot of advice to men who’d fallen in love with their bartenders. It was, after all, pretty much the whole point of the place...

Racer X by Kenneth Li Rafael
(The Fast and the Furious)

At dusk, they take over the road. Roaring and buzzing like locusts, a swarm of asphalt-scraping Japanese cars...

The Return of Superfly by Mark Jacobson
(American Gangster)

Frank Lucas, was once the city's biggest, baddest heroin kingpin, the original O.G. in chinchilla...

Life’s Swell by Susan Orlean (Blue Crush)

To be a surfer girl in Maui is to be the luckiest of creatures -- you’ve caught the perfect dappled wave and are on a ride that can’t end.

A Farewell to Arms by John Carlin
(Live Free or Die Hard)

For those on the ramparts of the world's sole superpower, the digital winds are blowing an icy chill through the triumphant glow of the post-Cold War.

Something’s Got to Give by Darcy Frey (Pushing Tin)

All the way down the bank of radar scopes, the air traffic controllers have that savage, bug-eyed look, like men on the verge of drowning...

Tribal Rites of Saturday Night by Nik Cohn
(Saturday Night Fever)

Vincent was the very best dancer in Bay Ridge—the ultimate Face.

Adventures in Ransom by William Prochnau
(Proof of Life)

A hostage drama involving former spies and revolutionaries, AK-47’s and armored cars, helicopter drops and hideaways in the Andes.

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson

We were somewhere around Barstow on the edge of the desert when the drugs began to take hold... (Scroll down for links to each chapter.)

Shattered Glass by Buzz Bissinger

At 25, Stephen Glass was the most sought-after young reporter in the nation’s capital. Trouble was, he made things up—sources, quotes, whole stories—in a breathtaking web of deception that emerged as the most sustained fraud in modern journalism.

The Great Escape by Joshua Bearman (Argo)

How the CIA used a fake science fiction film to sneak six Americans out of revolutionary Iran.

Fast Times at Ridgemont High by Cameron Crowe

The lives of kids in a typical town in California in 1979.

The Soloist by Steve Lopez

A great series of LA Times articles about a homeless musician.

The 15 Year Layover by Michael Paterniti
(The Terminal)

For more than a decade, Merhan Nasseri lived in terminal one at Charles de Gaulle airport, waiting. For what, he doesn't know anymore...