Lowe, the Emmy Award—winning actor who has starred in the television series Life Goes On, E.R. and Law & Order, is the reader for the audio version of Peace Like a River. PW spoke with him in the green room of HarperAudio's recording studios in Manhattan.
PW: How did you become involved in this project?
CL: It was the first audiobook I'd ever done. I read the book, to get a sense of what it was about, and about halfway through, I just said, "Yeah, I'll definitely do it, this is great!"
PW: How was the recording process?
CL: It took about five days. I have such a deep appreciation for writers and the process of writing, and I know how personal that experience is. That somebody's going to come in and be the voice of your book—there's a responsibility that comes with that. The challenge is to remove your own personal interpretation and allow the story to really be heard.
PW: Have you had any interaction with the book's author, Leif Enger?
CL: I haven't met him, but I have a letter to him that I'm writing in my head since I started reading the book. I do look forward to meeting him someday.
PW: Are you planning any promo for the audiobook?
CL: Just word of mouth.
PW: What are you working on now?
CL: My wife [Hilary Swank] and I are reading a Joyce Carol Oates children's book together. It's called Big Mouth and Ugly Girl.
PW: There's the old saying that the book is always better than the movie. Is the book always better than the audiobook?
CL: [With audiobooks,] I think the pictures are provided by your imagination, so I don't think it's the same kind of distilling of the story that you get with film, when you only have a certain amount of time to tell the story, and the images are created for you. At least with audiobooks it doesn't do that work for you. It's a different experience from reading it. But I don't think it's altogether different, and fundamentally it's the same because your mind is still creating the movie, if you will, as opposed to hiring a crew and having some big studio go in and ruin it.