Saturday, October 6, 2012

Shelley Freydont's "Foul Play at the Fair"

Shelley Freydont is the author of the Katie McDonald and Lindy Haggerty mystery series, and the Liv Montgomery, Celebration Bay Festival Mysteries.

Here she shares some suggestions for casting a big-screen adaptation of her new novel Foul Play at the Fair, the first Celebration Bay Festival mystery:
I have colleagues who always imagine their books’ characters as movie or television actors. I’ve never been able to do that. When I do try to think of the perfect casting, I always seem to default to the actors of the thirties and forties. Even when they were scruffy or silly there was something steady about them. My kind of heroes —and heroines.

Spencer Tracy and Katherine Hepburn, Myrna Loy and William Powell, Myrna Loy and Cary Grant, Myrna Loy and just about anyone. For me, she is the perfect combination of ditz, good humor and a woman who knows what she wants and how to get it.

Would I ever pattern a character with her in mind? No, I’m sure she would take over. I do keep the qualities I like about her in the back of my mind.

But if someone would like to make the series into a film today?

I would suggest Anne Hathaway for Liv. Liv is a Manhattan event planner who moves to a small upstate town to be the town’s event coordinator. She’s smart, savvy and a fish out of water. It’s a big learning curve for someone who’s more used to society backstabbing than death by farm implement. But she’s not afraid to get down and get dirty, especially when it comes to protecting her town and her new friends. Anne Hathaway has the look, the personality, and the resiliency as an actress that I admire. Plus she has a great comic sense and can seem perfectly at home while being just a little out of kilter.

Chaz Bristow on the other hand is one massive contradiction. Liv calls him the laziest newspaper editor in the world, but before returning to town to report local news and fishing conditions, he’d been an investigative reporter for the LA Times. He delights in making smarmy, but harmless, propositions to Liv, refuses to take any interest in the murders that plague Celebration Bay, and yet always seems to be one step behind Liv. Which can be annoying; but sometimes life saving.

An actor who played him would have to be unusual. A combination of Clive Owen and Owen Wilson, with a bit of Ewan McGregor thrown in.

And to round out the cast, Jeremy Irons as Ted, Kathy Bates as Dolly, Stanley Tucci as Dolly’s husband Fred. I guess this would have to be a big budget movie.
Learn more about the book and author at Shelley Freydont's website.

The Page 69 Test: Foul Play at the Fair.

--Marshal Zeringue