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J.D. Salinger focus of book, film biography

A new J.D. Salinger film and biography are being billed as an unprecedented look into the mysterious life of the author of ‘‘The Catcher in the Rye.’’ Simon & Schuster announced Tuesday that it had acquired ‘‘The Private War of J.D. Salinger,’’ an oral biography compiled by author David Shields and filmmaker-screenwriter Shane Salerno, whose screenplay credits include the Oliver Stone film ‘‘Savages.’’ Salerno has been working for several years on his documentary, which PBS will air next January for the 200th of its ‘‘American Masters’’ series. Salinger’s longtime literary agent, Phyllis Westberg of Harold Ober Associates Inc., declined comment Tuesday. Virtually nothing new has been learned about Salinger since he died in New Hampshire in 2010 at age 91. No authorized biography has appeared.

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