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|“||I will burn your life and every person in it like a cane field in a high wind.||„|
|~ John Shooter.|
|“||You stole my story. You stole my story and something's got to be done about it. Right is right and fair is fair and something has to be done.||„|
|~ John Shooter.|
He was portrayed by John Turturro, who also played Mo Flatbush in Mo Better Blues, Jesus Quintana in The Big Lebowski, Monkeybone in the film of the same name, the Rat King in The Nutcracker in 3D, the Goat in Green Eggs and Ham and Carmine Falcone in The Batman, and Johnny Depp, who also played Sweeney Todd in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, John Dillinger in Public Enemies, a version of Tony Shepard in The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, The Wolf in Into the Woods, Gellert Grindelwald in the first two Fantastic Beasts films and Lanfranco Cassetti in Murder on the Orient Express.
Shooter is an enigmatic and deranged aspiring writer and dairy farmer from Mississippi who accuses author Mort Rainey of stealing his story "Sowing Season" and threatens his life and the lives of those around him if he does not admit to the theft of his story. Mort dismisses him as a lunatic, but Shooter was never about to give up. Shooter then becomes more violent and even kills Mort's cat (a dog in the film) with a screwdriver. Shooter shows up again, this time demanding Mort fix the story's ending, and Mort feigns agreement. So Shooter burns down his former house. Back at the cabin, Mort receives a call from Shooter requesting a private meeting in the woods and when he arrives he finds his PI ,Ken, and Tom Greenleaf, the man who saw him and Shooter talking at one point, dead in Tom's truck. Shooter indicates he has implicated Mort in the murders, requiring Mort to cover up the crime by running the truck into a water-filled stone quarry, losing his watch in the process. Mort's literary agent sends a copy of the magazine with his published story via UPS and Mort picks it up at the post office.
When he arrives home with the magazine he opens it to find that the specific pages containing the story have been cut out. Mort realizes since the magazine was in a sealed package, Shooter could not have tampered with it. This leads Mort to realize that Shooter is merely a figment of his imagination; brought to life through Mort's multiple personality disorder which began after discovering his wife was having an affair. Mort realizes that he created Shooter to carry out the acts of killing Chico, Tom, Ken, and burning down his home. By now, the cabin is completely disheveled, with the word "shooter" carved throughout. Mort suddenly appears and Amy is struck by fear when she realizes the word is Mort's desire to "shoot her." Mort, now wearing Shooter's hat and speaking with a southern accent, chases Amy outside to her car and stabs her in the ankle to prevent her from leaving. Ted then shows up shortly after and Mort kills him with the shovel. After reciting the ending of "Sowing Season" he proceeds to kill her as well.
Some time later the sheriff from a nearby town visits him and tells him to avoid coming to his town anymore since he scares everyone there. Mort then tells him the best part of any story is the ending and eats some corn that he grew in his garden, which is heavily implied to have the bodies of Amy and Ted buried under it. (in a deleted scene it's confirmed that their bodies are buried under his corn)
Differences Between Film and Book
Shooter/Rainey's fate differs in the film and original novella. In the film, Ted arrives shortly afterwards and Amy watches helplessly as Mort ambushes and beheads him with a shovel while Amy screams vainly. Mort then recites the ending of "Sowing Season" as he beats Amy to death off-screen.
In the original novella, Shooter is ultimately killed when Amy flees and the insurance agent shoots him to defend her. At the conclusion, a final note from Shooter appears in his hat, stating he has returned home and apologizing for his actions committed in the novella. Amy notes that Shooter had been such a vivid character created by Mort.
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