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Entries in Adaptations (167)

Wednesday
Mar232016

Reader's Choice: Cruel Intentions (1999)

Wednesday nights are now devoted to you. We'll alternate between a Q&A and a Reader's Choice Movie. So you are essentially picking the topics each week. We started with Gattaca but y'all kept asking for Cruel Intentions so here we are again.


Believe it or not, I've never seen Cruel Intentions (1999) so I gladly accept the multiple requests to discuss. This is written and directed by someone named Roger Kumble and the name did not ring a bell. It turns out he's still working, mostly on television and he's working on a TV sequel to this very movie. I missed this news somehow but Sarah Michelle Gellar is reprising her role so this post is more timely than I meant it to be.

The credits also inform us that it's only "suggested by" Dangerous Liaisons.  That's a fancy word for adapted if you want to compete in Original Screenplay at the Oscars. (Not that this teen picture had any such designs.) I'm not sure if you know this but Dangerous Liaisons (1988) is one of my all time favorite movies. And Swoosie Kurtz is in this one, too! We begin with her as Sebastian Valmont's (Ryan Phillipe) therapist. Her broad gestures and funny notes remind us that this is a comedy. Of sorts. 

Swoosie, an unlikely victim in both Dangerous Liaisons movie

In both movies Swoosie is the mother of someone who couldn't have possibly come from her womb: Uma Thurman in the 1988 movie and Tara Reid in this movie -- so, downgrade. Tara must have been left on the editing room floor because this photo is all we see of her

His therapist is immune to young Sebastian's charms but she learns as he's leaving that her daughter wasn't. She screams at her nasty patient as he leaves the building and he flashes her this baby devil grin. [More...]

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Mar082016

Eva Green's Peculiar Children and Geena Davis Returning to TV

Laurence here with a couple of juicy actress news tidbits. After a string of well-cast disappointments, we're all hoping for a return to Tim Burton magic this year with his new film Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. We finally have some images from the film, which has what might be Burton's most formidable (live-action) cast since Big Fish, including Judi Dench, Samuel L. Jackson, Allison Janney, Terence Stamp, Kim Dickens and Rupert Everett. Whoa.

Most importantly, though, here's Eva Green in the title role. [More...]

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Feb272016

Avu DuVernay to direct A Wrinkle in Time

Lynn here, chewing on another bit of non-Oscar related movie news.

Ever since it was announced earlier this week that Ava DuVernay had signed on to direct the upcoming film version of Madeleine L’Engle’s much-beloved A Wrinkle in Time, I’ve been trying to imagine just how the director of Selma is going to approach a sci-fi fantasy that features benevolent shape-shifting inter-dimensional beings, entire planets controlled by a single giant brain, and children who literally cross the universe by bending the laws of both space and time.  She won’t be starting from scratch, at least; the project’s apparently been in the works for some time, with a script by Frozen’s Jennifer Lee.  But this will be the first time the book’s ever been brought to the big screen.  It’s frequently, and unsurprisingly, been called unfilmable, and the only previous adaptation – a 2003 TV movie on ABC – was such a failure that it’s best known for the quip it inspired from L’Engle:

I expected it to be bad, and it is.”

In other words, there’s every reason for apprehension.  Is there also reason for hope?

Click to read more ...

Friday
Feb262016

Lin-Manuel Miranda Has a Jolly Holiday with Mary

The news of a Rob Marshall rehashing of Mary Poppins was met here with both patient fear and complete revulsion. Emily Blunt is our new Mary, which will please some of us at least. However, here's a bit of casting news worthy of outright cheers: Hamilton mastermind Lin-Manuel Miranda is joining the film.

Miranda will be filling the massive shoes of Dick Van Dyke in a new character that will still be reminiscent of Dyke's Bert. That is quite an undertaking that the multi-hyphenate star and his unflappable charisma are fully equipped to take on. Even if his Hamilton success is truly unprecedented, kudos to Disney for signing over a significant role to an actual Broadway star. He's gotten close to a musical adaptation before, with Universal getting thisclose to filming his first musical In the Heights with Miranda intact.

It's worth noting that here's another step Disney is taking to put diversity on the screen in a big project post-Star Wars. The new Poppins iteration draws from P.L. Travers novels and won't be stuck to the original's plot, so perhaps we'll see further exciting casting? The reboot overload is something we'll continue to bemoan, but this one gets increasingly more interesting.

If nothing else, Lin-Manuel Miranda's absense from Hamilton might mean we plebians can score a ticket.

Thursday
Feb252016

YNMS: The Light Between Oceans

Lynn here, offering a little break from the frenzy of this year’s Oscars homestretch to ponder a possible future awards contender…

Fall, it seems so far away!  But it’s never too early to start thinking of the potential Oscars slate for next season, especially when you’ve got an adaptation of a popular book that features two mega-hot rising stars coming off fresh Oscar nominations and one Oscar winner who’s a bona fide screen goddess.  That would be The Light Between Oceans, which just dropped its first trailer yesterday.  Based on the bestselling novel by M.L. Stedman, it’s directed by Derek Cianfrance (Blue Valentine, The Place Beyond the Pines) and stars Michael Fassbender, Alicia Vikander, and Rachel Weisz.

Let’s break down the trailer, YNMS-style after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Feb232016

Oscar Screenplay Records That Could Be Broken

Manuel here to talk Oscar nominated screenplays. We first greeted them by looking at their first lines of dialogue, we crunched the numbers about how 2015 was a good year for female scribes, ranked them by quotability, and this week we’re taking a more playful approach. Think of it as a way to find some levity as we near the Big Day.

Now, we know there are frontrunners (and some dark horses) but I put all of that aside and imagined a world where every screenplay nominee has a shot and offered some records that could be broken Sunday night.

IF Bridge of Spies wins
Joel & Ethan Coen would join the ranks of most awarded screenwriters of all time, tying Woody Allen, Billy Wilder, Charles Brackett, Francis Ford Coppola, and Paddy Chayefsky, all of whom have three wins, though Allen holds the distinction of winning all three for Original screenplays.

IF Ex Machina wins
It would be the first film with a Latin title to win (previous failed bids include Equus and Europa Europa)

IF Inside Out wins
It would be the first animated film to win a screenplay award (previous failed bids include Toy Story, Shrek, Finding Nemo, Ratatouille, WALL-E and Up in the Original Screenplay category and Toy Story 3 in Adapted)

more after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Feb212016

More Guild Honors: Make-Up, Sound, and Adapted Scripts

Three sets of awards were handed out yesterday so let's talk MUAHS (Makeup and Hair Stylists), CAS (Cinema Audio Society) and USC Scripters.

USC Scripter
This Adapted Screenplay prize (not a guild prize) is from the University of Southern California but it's built itself up as quite a tradition in awards season. This is its 28th year! The prize goes to both the original source material author and the Screenwriter adapting it. Their winner usually wins the Oscar and they chose (no surprise) The Big Short originally a non-fiction book by Michael Lewis (all three the movies based on his books have been nominated for Best Picture) and adapted by Charles Randolph & Adam McKay. 

ICYMI: Manuel's fun ranking of the most quotable Screenplay nominees

Cinema Audio Society
The Revenant took this prize beating Mad Max, Bridge of Spies, Star Wars, and The Hateful Eight. It's up against the first three again on Oscar night plus The Martian. 

Makeup Artists and Hair Stylists Guild
Period Makeup: Mad Max Fury Road
Period Hair: Cinderella 
Special Makeup Effects: Mad Max Fury Road
Contemporary Makeup: Furious 7
Contemporary Hairstyling: Pitch Perfect 2

Carol keeps losing prizes (sigh). Anyway, solid choices though one can quibble. I never took in Furious 7 so that one is a bit of a headscratcher sight unseen... especially with Sicario in the running. It's also a bit perplexing to think of Pitch Perfect 2's hair work topping Spy's funny and elaborate quick changes (which I favoried in my own awardage) or Ex Machina's sleek style. You can see the complete MUAHS awards here (American Horror Story: Hotel, Game of Thrones and Dancing with the Stars were big in their TV categories).

Do you think Fury Road, The Revenant, and The Big Short will repeat these wins at the Oscars?