Jan. 22, 1989: Kinsella book being made into movie


As part of their This Day in Journal History series, the Edmonton Journal revisited W. P. Kinsella’s novel Shoeless Joe and the film Field of Dreams.

The screenplay of Edmonton-born author W.P. (Bill) Kinsella’s award-winning novel, Shoeless Joe, moved off 20th Century-Fox’s option shelf and into Universal Studio’s production rooms.

The film, Field of Dreams, starring Kevin Costner, was released in the spring. It was the latest in an all-star lineup of 1980s baseball movies including Bull Durham, The Natural, and Major League.


The movie regularly makes the list of 10 best baseball films and introduced the line “If you build it, he will come.” into popular speech.

The 1982 novel, the first and most widely read of Kinsella’s popular baseball stories, was named best novel of the year by the Canadian Authors Association. It’s the story of a man who builds a baseball diamond in his cornfield to realize his dream of luring former baseball stars to play there.

Read the rest of the article at the Edmonton Journal.

The original story “Shoeless Joe Jackson Comes To Iowa” that served as the impetus for the novel Shoeless Joe appears in The Essential W. P. Kinsella.

For more info about The Essential W. P. Kinsella, visit the Tachyon page.

Cover art by Thomas Canty.

Cover design by Elizabeth Story.