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(OPENPRESS) July 1, 2010 — International movie & TV star, Kevin Sorbo — Meet the Spartans, Andromeda, and whose TV series Hercules: The Legendary Journeys was the #1 rated show worldwide — has joined the film production of Alongside Night as an executive producer as well as accepting the lead role of Nobel-prize-winning economist, Dr. Martin Vreeland.

Kevin Sorbo
Kevin Sorbo

Alongside Night, based on the highly-acclaimed 1979 novel adapted and to be directed by its author, J. Neil Schulman (writer/director of Lady Magdalene’s, writer of Twilight Zone: “Profile in Silver”) is the story of the final economic collapse of the United States as seen through the eyes of 18-year-old Elliot Vreeland, searching for his missing Nobel-laureate-economist father, and the mysterious 18-year-old “Lorimer” whom Elliot meets in a black-market underground, whose own father might be the reason Elliot’s father is missing.

The novel was published in hardcover by Crown Publishers on October 16, 1979, with an endorsement on the dust jacket from A Clockwork Orange author, Anthony Burgess, who wrote, “I received Alongside Night at noon today. It is now eight in the evening and I just finished it. I think I am entitled to some dinner now as I had no lunch. The unputdownability of the book ensured that. It is a remarkable and original story, and the picture it presents of an inflation- crippled America on the verge of revolution is all too acceptable. I wish, and so will many novelists, that I, or they, had thought of the idea first. A thrilling novel, crisply written, that fires the imagination as effectively as it stimulates the feelings.”

Alongside Night 1979 Crown Hardcover
Alongside Night by J. Neil Schulman
Cover of 1979 Crown Hardcover

An endorsement from Milton Friedman, 1976 Nobel laureate in Economics, also appeared on the first-edition dust jacket: “An absorbing novel–science fiction, yet also a cautionary tale with a disturbing resemblance to past history and future possibilities.”

More recently, Congressman Ron Paul endorsed the 2009 30th Anniversary Edition of Alongside Night, writing, “Alongside Night may be even more relevant today than it was in 1979. Hopefully this landmark work of libertarian science fiction will inspire a new generation of readers to learn more about the ideas of liberty and become active in the freedom movement.”

On June 2, 2010, Glenn Beck told the three-million listeners to his syndicated radio program, “It reads exactly like my show … written in 1979! Phenomenal! Phenomenal!”

1989 Prometheus Hall of Fame Award for Alongside Night1989 Prometheus Hall of Fame Award
for Alongside Night

In 1989 Alongside Night was entered into the Prometheus Hall of Fame, the first year of its eligibility, along with previous years’ Hall of Fame winners George Orwell’s 1984, Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, and Robert A. Heinlein’s The Moon is a Harsh Mistress.

Alongside Night was also voted Freedom Book of the Month for May 2009 by the Freedom Book Club.

The 30th Anniversary Edition of Alongside Night was first offered as a download from http://www.alongsidenight.net/ on June 13, 2009, and 203,136 copies were downloaded in the following year — over 100,000 copies within five days in May 2010.

Alongside Night 30th Anniversary edition
Alongside Night 30th Anniversary Edition

Alongside Night will be the second feature film written and directed by J. Neil Schulman, following his suspense-comedy, Lady Magdalene’s, starring the original Star Trek‘s Lt. Uhura, Nichelle Nichols. Lady Magdalene’s has won two film-festival awards: “Best Cutting Edge Film” at the 2008 San Diego Black Film Festival, and “Audience Choice” at the 2008 Cinema City International Film Festival adjacent to Universal Studios, Hollywood.

J. Neil Schulman was introduced to Kevin Sorbo by Nichelle Nichols on a flight in 2007 when both were flying from Los Angeles to Atlanta for the DragonCon Convention where Sorbo was a featured guest and Lady Magdalene’s was being screened. They got back in touch through Facebook, where Schulman proceeded to familiarize Sorbo with his new production. Schulman is also an executive producer on Alongside Night.

Hercules: The Legendary JourneysHercules: The Legendary Journeys

Kevin Sorbo is one of the most popular actors in the world today because of the immense and enduring popularity as Hercules in five TV movies in 1994, which led to the continuing series Hercules: The Legendary Journeys (1995-1999) and guest appearances on its spin-off series, Xena: Warrior Princess. (1995-2000)

Kevin Sorbo gained another large fan base from his starring role of Captain Dylan Hunt on the 2001-2005 series Andromeda.

He has made frequent guest appearances on other popular series including Cheers, Murder She Wrote, Dharma & Greg, Two and a Half Men, The O,C., and Psych, and has appeared as himself on Celebrity Jeopardy, Celebrity Poker Showdown, Late Show with David Letterman, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, MADTv, Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher, Live with Regis, and Howard Stern.

In addition to Meet the Spartans Kevin Sorbo’s movie work includes roles in Kull the Conquerer, and An American Carol.

He currently has six features listed as “in production” on IMDb and four more listed as “in development.”

J. Neil Schulman is the author of twelve books including two other novels, The Rainbow Cadenza (Simon & Schuster, 1983), which won the Prometheus Award, and 2002′s Escape from Heaven, a Prometheus-award finalist. He’s also written frequently for magazines and newspapers including the Los Angeles Times, Reason, Liberty, and National Review, as well as having hosted and co-hosted radio shows. Admirers of his writing have included Charlton Heston, Robert A. Heinlein, Colin Wlson, Robert Anton Wilson, Piers Anthony, Dennis Prager, David Brin, Walter Williams, Gregory Benford, and Nathaniel Branden.

Alongside Night Plot Synopsis:

The American economy is in freefall. Markets are crashing. Inflation is soaring. Bankruptcies, foreclosures and unemployment are up, and even defense contracts are going overseas. The United States military is threatening to go on strike. Foreigners are buying up everything in America at firesale prices while gloating over the fall of a once great nation. Homeless people and gangs own the streets. Smugglers use the latest technology to operate bold enterprises that the government is powerless to stop, even with totalitarian spying on private communications. Anyone declared a terrorist by the administration is being sent to a secret federal prison where constitutional rights don’t exist.

And caught in the middle of it all are the brilliant teenage son of a missing Nobel-prizewinning economist, his best friend from prep school whose uncle was once an Israeli commando, and the beautiful but mysterious teenage girl he meets in a secret underground … a girl who carries a pistol with a silencer.

The setting could be next week. But this novel was written three decades ago.

Published Reviews:

Reason Magazine:
“One of the most widely hailed libertarian novels since the classic works of Ayn Rand.”

Science Fiction Review
:
“Probably the best libertarian novel since Atlas Shrugged.”

Los Angeles Times Book Review
:
“High Drama … A story of high adventure, close escapes, mistaken identities, and thrilling rescues. … A fast-moving tale of a future which is uncomfortably close at hand.”

Liberty Magazine:
“As the seventies ended … the time seemed ripe for a great libertarian novel to appear, and so it did. The novel was Alongside Night…”

Publishers Weekly
:
“An unabashedly polemical, libertarian novel which packages its message in a fast, effectively told action adventure.”

Sunday Detroit News:
“Let me begin with a disclaimer: I don’t really agree with many of J. Neil Schulman’s ideas about society or politics or money. But his first book, Alongside Night, is as enjoyable piece of cautionary fiction as I have read in some years … Like Ayn Rand and Robert A. Heinlein, Schulman can tell a good story!”


Alongside Night -- The Movie
Go to the Alongside Night Official Movie Website


Alongside Night is listed as in development on IMDb Pro and its official website is http://www.alongsidenightmovie.com/. It’s for sale on Amazon.com as both a trade paperback and as a Kindle download.

Jesulu Productions may be reached at production@jesulu.com.


My comic thriller Lady Magdalene’s — a movie I wrote, produced, directed, and acted in it — is now available for sale or rental on Amazon.com Video On Demand. If you like the way I think, I think you’ll like this movie. Check it out!

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