FILMCLUB Gets The Stories From The Stars
The film charity asks the celebs for their favourite book-to-film flicks…
This month’s National Storytelling Week 2011 will see thousands of people across the country take part in the oral re-telling of popular stories, and while great tales come in many forms, book-to-film franchises like Twilight and Harry Potter have been dominating the headlines in recent years.
To support National Storytelling Week – which runs from 29 January – nationwide education charity FILMCLUB has asked stars of popular big screen book adaptations for their own favourites, and how much their own films owe to a great story.
Jack Black - star of the recent classic book adaptation Gulliver’s Travels - cited the 1970s film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory as his favourite book-to-film adaptation, due to the madcap performance of Gene Wilder:
“[The film] has probably my favourite performance in a kids' film with Gene Wilder. He had an insane intensity along with his comedy that was magnetic and that’s why it's my favourite.”
On why he was so keen to work on Gulliver’s Travels, Black spoke of his keenness to adapt the novel:
“I was drawn to the project because… I liked the challenge of updating a classic. There's a lot of pressure there, but there's also a lot of fun opportunities to, you know, be part of the great history of a three hundred year old, enduring piece of literature.”
Harry Potter star Tom Felton has also spoken to FILMCLUB about his favourite books on screen:
“There are so many fantastic book adaptations out there. The 'Twilight' books are a great example, and I think personally JK [Rowling] has really opened up such a great world for the youth to get really into books, really into franchises of books, and for them to be shown in a proper light with film.
"It’s fantastic they can do that…. I’m reading a fantastic book at the moment called The Boy Who Dared, by Susan Campbell Bartoletti. It’s amazing, and I think it would make such a fantastic film.”
Stars of Twilight: Eclipse told FILMCLUB what they thought about the value of a good story, and how the books played a vital part in the success of the hit films in which they feature. Actress Nikki Reid (Rosalie) commented:
“Of course these films owe a large part of their popularity to the book. The story is so strong – it sets this amazing, unobtainable love story, this powerful, blinding love."
Kellan Lutz (Emmett Cullen) added:
“The book has a huge part to play in why the films are so popular - it's a great story about an endless love which everybody falls in love with, but which is taken to the extreme. It really is both a dynamic book and story… it's really unique.”
Twilight newcomer Xavier Samuel (Riley) gave a similar point of view:
“The success of the film is largely due to the world that Stephanie Meyer created in her book… The way it was written enables people to put themselves in Bella’s shows, and I think it’s really important to be able to identify with the character.”
The cast of The Chronicles of Narnia series, another popular book-to-film franchise, revealed their own favourite stories to be adapted for the big screen, with actor Skander Keynes (Edmund Pevensie) voting for the ever-popular Harry Potter series.
Like FILMCLUB, these stars value a great story. To get involved in National Storytelling Week, and re-tell a favourite story at one of their many events visit www.sfs.org.uk/nsw for further details.
Alternatively log onto www.filmclub.org for a special selection of timeless fables on film.
FILMCLUB is a free service to all state schools, offering the opportunity to watch, discuss and review thousands of great films.
For further details on how to set up a film club at your school, please visit www.filmclub.org/register or call a member of the FILMCLUB schools team on 0207 288 4520.