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CNET Book Club: Josh Frank on bringing the Marx Brothers and Salvador Dalí together

In Giraffes On Horseback Salad, the author and his collaborators, including Tim Heidecker, bring a long-lost film project to life.

Dan Ackerman Editorial Director / Computers and Gaming
Dan Ackerman leads CNET's coverage of computers and gaming hardware. A New York native and former radio DJ, he's also a regular TV talking head and the author of "The Tetris Effect" (Hachette/PublicAffairs), a non-fiction gaming and business history book that has earned rave reviews from the New York Times, Fortune, LA Review of Books, and many other publications. "Upends the standard Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs/Mark Zuckerberg technology-creation myth... the story shines." -- The New York Times
Expertise I've been testing and reviewing computer and gaming hardware for over 20 years, covering every console launch since the Dreamcast and every MacBook...ever. Credentials
  • Author of the award-winning, NY Times-reviewed nonfiction book The Tetris Effect; Longtime consumer technology expert for CBS Mornings
Scott Stein Editor at Large
I started with CNET reviewing laptops in 2009. Now I explore wearable tech, VR/AR, tablets, gaming and future/emerging trends in our changing world. Other obsessions include magic, immersive theater, puzzles, board games, cooking, improv and the New York Jets. My background includes an MFA in theater which I apply to thinking about immersive experiences of the future.
Expertise VR and AR, gaming, metaverse technologies, wearable tech, tablets Credentials
  • Nearly 20 years writing about tech, and over a decade reviewing wearable tech, VR, and AR products and apps
Dan Ackerman
Scott Stein
2 min read

Scott, Josh Frank and Dan. 

Sarah Tew/CNET

Author Josh Frank has done the near impossible. He's managed to resurrect a long-dormant film project and bring it to life as a new graphic novel. The film in question is Giraffes on Horseback Salad, originally planned as a collaboration between Spanish surrealist Salvador Dalí and the Marx Brothers. 

Working closely with Harpo, Dalí plotted out a movie about GrouchoHarpoChico (sorry, no Zeppo) and a mysterious "surrealist woman." The extent of just how much work was done on the never-completed project has been a matter of speculation for years.


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Quirk Books

Enter music and movie writer Josh Frank, who has painstakingly chased down every piece he could find of Dalí's outline and notes on the project, which were spread across different countries and collections. 

In our conversation, he explains how, along with artist Manuela Pertega and Tim Heidecker (of Tim and Eric fame), he knitted the outline into a graphic novel that manages to feel both like a Marx Brothers movie and a surreal Dalí project. 

About CNET Book Club

The Book Club is hosted by a pair of self-proclaimed book experts: Dan Ackerman (author of the nonfiction video game history book The Tetris Effect), and Scott Stein, a playwright and screenwriter. We'll be announcing our next Book Club selection soon, so send us your suggestions and keep an eye out for updates on Twitter at @danackerman and @jetscott.

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