Wednesday, May 07, 2008

The New Bronte Screen Avatars

According to this article, Ellen Page will be working with BBC Films for a new adaption of Jane Eyre. I kid you not.

Can anyone see Ellen Page as Jane Eyre? Her smart-ass persona in Hard Candy and Juno still sticks too closely in my mind. I don't see Ellen Page as a Victorian protagonist. I don't see Ellen Page in any period drama at all.

But then, she might surprise me. I am hoping she will surprise me, because a bad adaptation of any Bronte novel is a bad thing.

This is on top of the recent casting of Natalie Portman as Catherine in an upcoming adaptation of Wuthering Heights. [via]

Here's a shot of Natalie Portman as Queen Amidala. You like?

I love Ellen Page and Natalie Portman. No debate about that - but something about these star-stubbed casting of the Bronte novels make me suspicious. Perhaps some movie executives decide they will milk the works of the Bronte sisters as the next cash-cows. They probably figured they were onto a good thing with Keira and Austen. Next thing you know, they will be calling the Bronte novels - "chick-lit".

I am cynical, aren't I?

I really hope they don't mess these up.


Carl V. Anderson said...

I loved Keira in Pride and Prejudice so I at least have a small amount of hope that these two actresses will do as well in their period pieces. But we won't know until we see. Ellen Page is the biggest risk in my opinion but I look forward to seeing if she can pull it off.

Melwyk said...

Oh, yes, I agree. I have such an aversion to Keira I can barely stand to watch her. In P&P??? Why? We'll have to wait on the Bronte films, but as you say, I fear they will become the latest chick-lit. (maybe Catherine will change Heathcliff and they'll live happily ever after!) I don't think you can top the Ralph Fiennes and Juliette Binoche "Wuthering Heights".

darkorpheus said...

Carl: I hope so too. Sometimes Hollywood cast actresses without taking into consideration if they are actually suitable for a part.

I hope their talents will prevail though. *fingers crossed*

Melanie: With Keira, probably because she has the "right accent" and she is also a marketable face.

Don't you hate it when they started marketing Austen's books as "chick-lit"? (Well, I hated it!)

Imagine the pastel pink cover treatment for "Villette", "Jane Eyre" and "Wuthering Heights." With girly illustrations.

Oh, I shudder.

theduckthief said...

They need to stop making remakes and Portman and Paige? Seriously?

I am not looking forward to these movies. Most likely just done for the money. I mean, they picked big box office names for the lead roles. I don't think they're the best people for the parts even if I did agree with remaking these movies.

Anonymous said...

A new adaptation of Wuthering Heights doesn't sound too tiring but a new Jane Eyre? That book needs a break.

I'm sort of just dying for Portman to be a good movie again. Recently there's been Closer and...?

darkorpheus said...

duck thief I agree - it's for the money. But then again, it cost a lot of money to make a period drama, so it has to be profitable to justify a film.

There are definitely other actresses better suited for these roles, but they might not be as well-known, or as big a crowd-puller. Often, the studio make the "safe" choices by casting known faces.

Again, i think it's a sign of the times. Film adapation of classics are "safe" -- rather than investing in a proper script with original storylines.

Imani Well, the last Wuthering Heights adaptation had Fiennes and Binoche. Great actors, but the film didn't feel "right"

But you're right about YET another Jane Eyre adapation. I still have the TV adaption of Jane Eyre on my DVD stack. Was going to watch it after I FINALLY finish reading the novel.

(I'm so ashamed I never finished Jane Eyre. Me, a Lit major.)

I take it you didn't like The Other Boleyn Girl? :)