Monday, March 25, 2013

Jeanine Cummins's "The Crooked Branch"

Jeanine Cummins is the author of A Rip in Heaven: A Memoir of Murder and Its Aftermath, published in 2004 and a surprise bestseller. The Outside Boy, published in 2010, was her first novel.

Here she dreamcasts an adaptation of her new novel, The Crooked Branch:
When my memoir, A Rip in Heaven, came out in 2004, the publication generated a lot of film-rights interest , but I didn’t feel comfortable selling the movie option. I have no such qualms about my new novel, The Crooked Branch. I would love to see a film adaptation of this book. Here is my dream cast:

Majella – this is the contemporary female lead. Majella is a feisty, successful, thoroughly modern woman, who is struggling to find her way after the birth of her first daughter. Majella has a dark sense of humor and a potty-mouth, which are not the most agreeable characteristics for a new mama with a tiny, helpless, adorable little baby. So I think her character has to be played by someone who is incredibly likable no matter what, like Jennifer Garner, who, as far as I can tell, can do no wrong.

Ginny – this character is Majella’s ancestor, who is living during the famine years of the 1840s in western Ireland. I think it’s important for this woman to be played by an Irish actress. Ginny’s character is pretty naturally sympathetic, given her dire circumstances, and the impossible choices she faces, in trying to keep her children alive during the worst years of the potato famine. The part of Ginny should be played by someone who can perform acrobatics of nuance without evening opening her mouth. Someone like Olivia Wilde.

Supporting cast – I’d like to see Kathy Bates play Majella’s mother because she is both hilarious and incredibly talented, and she could deftly handle both the comic and serious sides of that complex mama character. I would like the therapist, Dr. Zimmer, to be played by Janeane Garofalo because she is New York. I would like Leo (Majella’s husband) to be played by Edward Norton, and the historic Irish male part, Seán, to be played by Cillian Murphy, because my strong female leads deserve only the best supporting eye candy. The part of baby Emma should be played by some very cute baby who screams a lot.
Learn more about the book and author at Jeanine Cummins's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Crooked Branch.

--Marshal Zeringue