Richard Price (writer)

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Richard Price
Born (1949-10-12) October 12, 1949 (age 68)
The Bronx, New York City, United States
Pen name Harry Brandt
Occupation Novelist, screenwriter, journalist
Nationality American
Alma mater B.A,. Cornell University
MFA, Columbia University
Period 1974 - present
Genre Crime fiction, drama, mystery
Notable works The Wanderers, Clockers
Spouse Lorraine Adams

Richard Price (born October 12, 1949) is an American novelist and screenwriter, known for the books The Wanderers (1974), Clockers (1992) and Lush Life (2008). Price's novels explore late-20th century urban America in a gritty, realistic manner that has brought him considerable literary acclaim. Several of his novels are set in a fictional northern New Jersey city called Dempsy. In addition to writing literature, he writes for television, including The Wire, The Night Of and The Deuce.

Early life and education[edit]

Price was born in the Bronx, New York City, the son of Harriet (Rosenbaum) and Milton Price, a window dresser.[2] A self-described "lower middle class Jewish kid", he grew up in a housing project in the northeast Bronx. He graduated from the Bronx High School of Science in 1967[3] and obtained a B.A. from Cornell University and an MFA from Columbia University. He also did graduate work at Stanford University.[citation needed]


Price's first novel was The Wanderers (1974), a coming-of-age story set in the Bronx in 1962, written when Price was 24 years old. It was adapted into a film in 1979, with a screenplay by Rose Kaufman and Philip Kaufman and directed by the latter.

Clockers (1992) was nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award. It has been praised for its humor, suspense, dialogue, and character development. In 1995, it served as the basis for a film directed by Spike Lee; Price and Lee shared writing credits for the screenplay.

In his review of Price's novel Lush Life (2008), Walter Kirn compared Price to Raymond Chandler and Saul Bellow.[4] In July 2010, a group art show inspired by Lush Life was held in nine galleries in New York City.[5]

Price wrote a detective novel entitled The Whites under the pen name Harry Brandt.[6] The book was released February 17, 2015.[6] Film producer Scott Rudin will be producing a film version of the novel.[6]

Price has written numerous screenplays, including The Color of Money (1986) (for which he was nominated for an Oscar), Life Lessons (the Martin Scorsese segment of New York Stories) (1989), Sea of Love (1989), Mad Dog and Glory (1993), Ransom (1996), and Shaft (2000). He wrote the screenplay for the film Child 44, which was released in April 2015. Price did uncredited work on the film American Gangster (2008).[7]

Price wrote and conceptualized the 18-minute film surrounding Michael Jackson's "Bad" video. He also wrote for the HBO series The Wire. Price won the Writers Guild of America Award for Best Dramatic Series at the February 2008 ceremony for his work on the fifth season of The Wire.[8] He created a police drama series NYC 22 in 2012, it was cancelled after one season. His eight-part HBO miniseries The Night Of premiered in July 2016.

He is often cast in cameo roles in the films he writes.[citation needed]

He has published articles in The New York Times, Esquire Magazine, The New Yorker, Village Voice, Rolling Stone and others. He has taught writing at Binghamton University, Columbia, Yale University, and New York University. He was one of the first people interviewed on the NPR show Fresh Air when it began airing nationally in 1987.[citation needed]


In 1999, he received the American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature.[citation needed] He was inducted into the Academy in 2009.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Price lives in Harlem in New York City, and is married to the journalist and author Lorraine Adams.[9]




  1. ^ Bendis, Brian Michael and Oeming, Michael Avon, Powers TPB Vol. 5 - Anarchy (Image, 2003), ISBN 1-58240-331-7
  2. ^ "Richard Price Biography," Film Reference. Accessed July 17, 2015.
  3. ^ Price, Richard (October 25, 1981). "The Fonzie of Literature". The New York Times Book Review. Retrieved 2009-11-16. 
  4. ^ Kirn, Walter. "Neighborhood Watch " New York Times Book Review, March 16, 2008.
  5. ^ Cotter, Holland (July 8, 2010). "Galleries Interpret Richard Price's 'Lush Life'". The New York Times. 
  6. ^ a b c Ford, Rebecca (August 22, 2014). "Sony in Talks to Adapt Richard Price's Crime Fiction Book (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  7. ^ Peter Hanson and Paul Herman. Tales From the Script (HarperCollins, 2010), page 196.
  8. ^ "2009 Writers Guild Awards Television, Radio, News, Promotional Writing, and Graphic Animation Nominees Announced". WGA. 2008. Archived from the original on 2008-12-12. Retrieved 2008-12-12. 
  9. ^ The Reliable Source. "Style: Love, etc.: Authors Richard Price and Lorraine Adams wed," Washington Post online (May 20, 2012).
  10. ^ The Whites official website. Accessed July 17. 2015.

External links[edit]


Critical studies and reviews[edit]