After Chicago Tribune’s four-part Tribune bankruptcy “Broken Deal” series wrapped up yesterday, I asked co-author Michael Oneal what he’s heard from readers. He emailed:
Reaction has been generally positive and enthusiastic, which is really gratifying. I wasn’t sure whether this would be viewed as tired, old news and I’m sure some had that reaction. But the many readers who emailed etc. seemed genuinely interested in hearing the back story and endlessly fascinated with anything Zell [who wouldn’t sit for an interview]. We tried to present it as an allegory of Wall Street and corporate excess and I hope we succeeded.
I also asked about the length of the series.
“How many words? No idea. But as they say, I wish I had a nickel for every one…”
The series is behind a paywall, and I wondered if it would eventually become free-to-read. Editor Gerould Kern responds to my inquiry: “The Chicago Tribune’s ‘Broken Deal’ series is available to subscribers in print and online. The first five page views per month are available free of charge to anyone who simply registers. Visitors can see the series in that way.”
UPDATE: “The yarn told by Michael Oneal and Steve Mills deserves to be expanded into a book, of course, but as I read I kept thinking, HBO series,” writes Chicago Reader press critic Michael Miner.
Would the miniseries have any good guys? If I were writing it, I’d be tempted to nudge Gerould Kern, the Tribune’s editor, into the limelight. He wound up in the job in July of 2008, getting it mainly because editors with more impressive credentials were bailing out. He had [Randy] Michaels to live with. … Kern also had to live with the open contempt of many of those departed editors.
Who plays Zell in the mini-series? William H. Macy? Robert Duvall?