Someone’s bound to make a movie about Egon Schiele. I’m surprised that none of the current crop of young actors with surly expressions and aspirations to be taken seriously as artists has staked a claim to the Austrian painter’s life, the way Madonna has with Frida Kahlo. Schiele’s history has everything—conflict, sex, persecution, social criticism, and even hints of incest. You can imagine the synopsis.

Born in 1890 to a bourgeois family in a provincial Austrian town. Age twelve: in trouble for disrupting his Gymnasium classes by drawing. Age fourteen: death of his father from syphilis. Struggle to convince his uncle-guardian to allow him to apply to the Vienna School of Applied Arts, in defiance of his late father’s wish that he enroll at the local polytechnical school. Drawings presented to the School of Applied Arts are so impressive that he is advised to set his sights...

 
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