Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Josephine Angelini's "Dreamless"

Josephine Angelini is a Massachusetts native and the youngest of eight siblings. A real-live farmer's daughter, she graduated from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts in theater, with a focus on the classics.

Here she shares some thoughts on casting a big screen adaptation of Dreamless, the second installment of her debut YA trilogy:
If my books were ever turned into movies, and I actually got some say who to cast, I would pick total unknowns. I have two reasons for this. The first is that when I go see a movie with a really well-known star in it, all I can think is, "Oh. That's so-and-so in Spandex. Isn't she dating the lead guitarist from that band?". It's totally selfish of me, but if my characters ever found their way to the big screen, I'd want the opposite. Years later, I'd want people to see the actress and think, "Oh. That's Helen Hamilton". (my main character) I guess what I'm saying is that I'd want to totally ruin a young actor's life. Evil, but true.

The second motivation for me to choose unknowns is that I've noticed that when a book gets turned into a movie, especially in the YA genre for some strange reason, most the original fans of the book go bananas and openly protest the choices for the male and female lead. Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart sent a lot of the fans of the book into fits. Then there's what happened to Josh Hutcherson. The fans of the Hunger Games books lost their minds when he was chosen, and the poor guy had to suffer through interviews about whether or not he was too short to work opposite Jennifer Lawrence and just not buff enough to be Peeta. I want to avoid that if I can. For the young actors, yes, but more importantly, for the fans. After all, they're the ones that loved to book enough, and supported it so fervently, that a studio decided it was worth the huge financial risk to make a movie in the first place. There are always going to be readers that hate it when their books get turned into movies, but I'd like to make the transition as easy as possible for them if I can.

So no stars.

Not that a studio would ever allow that happen, but hey. You can always ask, right?
Learn more about the book and author at Josephine Angelini's website and blog.

Writers Read: Josephine Angelini (June 2011).

--Marshal Zeringue