ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Retro Reading: The Tower and The Glass Inferno

Updated on June 3, 2015

They say it takes a village to raise a child, but it took two books to bring The Towering Inferno to the big screen.

Both The Tower by Richard Martin Stern and The Glass Inferno by Thomas N. Scortia and Frank M. Robinson were published within a few months of each other in 1974 and were the inspirations for the big screen disaster epic. And what an epic it was for Academy Award winning screenwriter Stirling Silliphant.

Since Silliphant had two original source materials, a majority of The Tower seems to have ended up on the silver screen.

The Tower takes us through the day of the building's dedication ceremony. During that time, it has come to the attention that costs were cut on the electrical side of the construction, but the big problem here is a bomb has been planted by a disgruntled employee.

Set in New York, the fictional World Tower is 125 stories and towers over the Trade Center located a few blocks away.

Undoubtedly, this is the darker of the two books as all of the action takes place at the cocktail party and there are no other occupants in the building. In this book, the building loses power in the late day sunset.

What was used for the film:

*the dedication party

*Patty and Paul (later changed to Roger for the film since there are an overabundance of "Pauls" in the book)

*the cutbacks in the electrical system

*the Mayor and his wife (Paula)

*Will Giddings (even though a major character here, his role is cut in the movie)

*the character of Zib Wilson is changed to Susan Franklin, Faye Dunaway's role)

*the use of the breeches bouy

*Senator Peters' name is changed to Parker

*Grover Frazee acts as the PR person for the event (see under The Glass Tower for more information)

While The Glass Tower doesn't have a specific city in which it takes place in, authors Scortia and Robinson have set the story in a northern climate due to sleet and snow as a hamper in rescue operations.

Unlike The Tower, its the night before Thanksgiving and the building is occupied. There are people living in the apartments and many tenants have occupied the building's retail and office space.

By using the start of the holiday season and a fuller building, there's a livelier feel to the book which makes the sixty six tower come alive. Characters are working late and the apartment residents go about life as they normally would.

Although there is no party in the building's restaurant, you will find a lot of action up there amongst those who will soon be trapped.

Also, a television reporter has been working on a story regarding the Glass Tower and the potential problems if there were to be a fire.

Elements used for the film:

*as mentioned above the Grover Frazee character was changed to Dan Bigelow. Bigelow in this novel is named John and is vice-president of Motivational Designs. His "guest" in the office is actress Deirdre Elmon. For the movie, Deirdre's character becomes Lorrie, Bigelow's secretary

*Lisolette Mueller, Harlee Claiborne and Harry Jernigan are featured characters

*The Albrecht family is trimmed down to Mrs. Albrecht and her two children along with a name change

*the scenic elevator is used

The best out of the two novels is the latter, since there is more action and you do care more for the characters (probably because they're more familiar to the movie going population of the time) but all in all, it was good to see just how the movie was written using these two books.

Adapting a novel into a screenplay is tough, and I think the latter offered a much better story. Each has its own merits but without these two novels you have to wonder just how The Towering Inferno would have ended up if each were produced separately.



Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)