Vanity Fair has published a revealing and moving piece on one of Arthur Miller’s darkest secrets. The article is about his rarely mentioned fourth child Daniel, a boy with Down-syndrome that was sent off to an institution and never publicly acknowledged by the famous playwright. Do yourself a favor and read Arthur Miller’s Missing Act.
While reading this captivating piece the question that immediately came to my mind was: when is someone going to turn this into a movie? Biopics of the recently deceased are always touchy subjects, but taking an unusual vantage point, like the point of view of the son who knew who his father was but never knew him, has real dramatic potential.
Dramatizing the obvious gap between what a person says and what he does always makes interesting viewing. This real life story even makes room for the possibility of a happy ending, with the elder Miller receiving some kind of redemption by a final noble deed prior to his death. But the article hits the mark when it suggests: “The important part of the story is that Danny transcended his father’s failures.” Could there be a better theme for a story than that?