- Raymond Khoury
imagesize = 150px
name = Raymond Khoury
occupation = novelist, screenwriter
nationality = Irish-Lebanese
period = 1995-present
genre = Thriller, Mystery
website = http://www.raymondkhoury.com
Raymond Khoury (b. in
Lebanon) is a screenwriter and novelist, best known as the author of the 2006 "New York Times" Bestseller " The Last Templar".
Raymond Khoury was born in
Lebanonbut spent his teenage years in Rye, New York, where his family moved in 1975 to escape the Lebanese civil war. Khoury returned to Lebanon after his graduation from Rye Country Day high school to attend the American University of Beirutand study architecture. During his time as a student, he also illustrated several children's books for the Oxford University PressMiddle East office. Shortly after Khoury completed his degree, fighting broke out in Lebanon again, and in February 1984 he was evacuated from Beirutby the U.S. Marine Corpsaboard a Chinook helicopter.cite web | last = | first = | authorlink = | coauthors = | title = About the Author: Bio | work = | publisher = LastTemplar.Com | date = 2006 | url =http://www.lasttemplar.com/author/author.asp | doi = | accessdate = 2007-02-20 ]
After a few months working at a small architectural firm in
London, Khoury moved to Fontainebleau, France, where he earned an MBAfrom the European Institute of Business Administration(INSEAD). Upon his graduation he returned to London, working in investment banking. It was through this unlikely career path that Khoury became interested in writing, as Khoury was introduced to a Wall Streetinvestment banker who developed screeplays in his spare time. Taking an idea of his that the two jointly developed, Khoury wrote a screenplay which was a finalist for a Fulbright Fellowship in Screenwriting. His second writing attempt, a semi-autobiographical account of his college years in war-torn Lebanon was also shortlisted for the same award.
In 1996, Khoury optioned the rights to the
Melvyn Braggnovel "The Maid of Buttermere" and wrote the screenplay adaptation of it. Robert DeNirosoon announced to Variety that he would be producing the movie and playing the lead role. Khoury has also written for the BBCshows "Spooks" (known as "MI:5" in the United States) and "Waking the Dead".
During the early days of his screenwriting career, before he was even able to attract an agent, Khoury completed a screenplay he called "The Last Templar", an "epic" thriller about a search for the lost treasure of the
Knights Templar. After eighteen months of research and writing, Khoury lent the script to a friend who immediately suggested that Khoury turn it into a novel. With Khoury's permission, the friend submitted the screenplay to a book agent. Within a few months (in 1996), Khoury was offered a six-figure advance by a major publisher to create a book based on the screenplay, with the stipulation that the book exclude all references to religion. Although at that time Khoury had not sold any of his other writing work, he declined the money and the book deal.cite web | last = Schaftt | first = Lars | authorlink = | coauthors = | title = Author Interview | work = | publisher = LastTemplar.Com | date = 2006 | url =http://www.lasttemplar.com/author/interview.asp | doi = | accessdate = 2007-02-20 ]
His pet screenplay set aside, Khoury worked on his screenplays for several years, building a successful career for himself in London and in Hollywood, before a new agent at the William Morris Agency, who he had joined at that point, read his screenplay of "The Last Templar" and encouraged him to adapt it into a novel. Finally, in September 2002, Khoury began researching and writing the novelized version of his screenplay, which took three years to write. The novel sold quickly, and was first released in the UK in 2005. It soon became a "New York Times" Bestseller, spending 11 weeks on the hardcover fiction list, and a Number 1 bestseller overseas. It has been translated into thirty-eight languages and published in over forty countries.cite web | last = | first = | authorlink = | coauthors = | title = International Editions | work = | publisher = LastTemplar.Com | date = 2006 | url =http://www.lasttemplar.com/book/international.asp | doi = | accessdate = 2007-02-20 ] Although the book shares some general thematic concepts with those of "Da Vinci Code" author
Dan Brown, Khoury devised his plot before Brown's novels were released.
The Last Templar" (2005)
*"The Sanctuary" (August 2007)
* The Gift (Winter 2009)
* [http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1308632/ Raymond Khoury at IMDB]
* [http://www.raymondkhoury.com Raymond Khoury Official Website]
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.