the iron orchard

Q&A with The Iron Orchard Screenwriter Gerry de Leon

February 20, 2019 | By Kimya Kavehkar

Set and filmed in West Texas, the oil boom period piece starts screening Feb. 22. West Texas wildcatters have long been mythologized on screen in classic films like Giant and There Will Be Blood. This month, The Iron Orchard follows in those footsteps with its dramatic tale of greed, lust, and hunger during the oil boom of the 1930s through ’50s.

The Iron Orchard is based off a novel of the same name written by Tom Pendleton (a nom de plume of Fort Worth writer and oil producer Edmund Van Zandt). The book caused a stir when it was published in 1966 and has since become a beloved classic for many in the Texas oil industry—in fact, a group of oilmen subsidized the independent film, directed by Midland native Ty Roberts.

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