I recently came across this piece in the NYT by one of my favourite film critics, Dana Stevens, on which book she thought was begging to be made into a movie. She says:
“Envisioning the movie version of a beloved book is at once an act of tenderness and of violence. Even as you recognize that the thought experiment is likely to end in failure, you find yourself mentally casting the main characters, finessing the details of costume and production design, maybe even framing the opening shot. No film that commits the crass act of existing could compare with the one that takes shape in your mind as you read, a project unbeholden to the demands of budget or box-office draw or, indeed, the laws of time and space. (Want to cast Cary Grant opposite Cate Blanchett in a screwball update of Pride and Prejudice? Have at it.)”
She goes on to envision an adaptation of Edith Wharton’s The Custom of the Country, starring either Amy Adams or Busy Philipps, and directed by either Sofia Coppola or Todd Haynes, (or “maybe a time traveling Douglas Sirk“).
You should read the article — it’s great. And it got me thinking, which book do I think is begging to be made into a movie?
The Woman Who Lost Her Soul, by Bob Shacochis is an epic, sprawling geopolitcal thriller in the vein of a John le Carré novel that sweeps across time and places such as Haiti, Turkey, Washington DC and Croatia. It was a long, stunning novel about love, war, and family, and I remember thinking it would be a fantastic movie.
In my fantasy producer role, I’d hire Fernando Meirelles, of The Constant Gardner and City of God fame, to direct. Lawyer Tom Harrington would be played by Bryan Cranston. Sargeant Eville Burnette would be played by Taylor Kitsch. (Okay, I admit this might be a bit of a stretch, but I’m currently obsessed with him as broody Riggins on Friday Night Lights, which may be coloring my choice here.) The titular “Woman,” beautiful and secretive photojournalist Jackie Scott, would be played by Elizabeth Olsen, who I think is one of the most interesting actresses working in Hollywood right now. (Case in point: Did you see Martha Marcy May Marlene? You should.) And Christoph Waltz (you might remember him as the extra-evil Nazi from Inglorious Basterds) was born to play Jackie’s father.
Now it’s your turn: What book do you think is begging to be made into a movie?