Monday, February 20, 2017

Lara Elena Donnelly's "Amberlough"

Lara Elena Donnelly is a graduate of the Alpha and Clarion writing workshops. Her fiction won the Dell Magazine Award for Undergraduate Excellence in Science Fiction and Fantasy and she has been published in Icarus, Strange Horizons, Grim Corps, and Mythic Delirium. Donnelly has worked as professional fire performer, belly dancer, and is knowledgeable in aerial acrobatics and burlesque.

Here Donnelly dreamcasts an adaptation of Amberlough, her debut novel:
Amberlough: The Movie. Or, as has been suggested by several people, the BBC miniseries. (Someone even said it should be made into a Broadway musical!) At any rate: the media adaptation!

In a perfect world, I’d pop in my time machine, grab RuPaul circa 2005 for Aristide, then power back to the 50s and snatch Damn Yankees-era Gwen Verdon to play Cordelia. The role of Cyril DePaul would be played by my high school boyfriend’s older brother, a stage actor you’ve probably never heard of.

But as you may have noticed, we don’t live in a perfect world, and time travel isn’t really an option. So in a slightly-less-than-perfect-but-certainly-better-than-the-reality world, in which Amberlough is made into a movie, I’ve got some more viable options.

Once upon a time, I thought Baz Luhrmann was the natural choice to direct Amberlough, but I’m not sure he’d do justice to the heavier parts of the story. I recently finished watching The Night Manager, and I think Susanne Bier would slay an adaptation of Amberlough. She’s got high-tension romance, cutthroat politics, and luscious wealth porn down pat.

Ryan Gosling could pull off Cyril’s charm and his brutality. Plus, he’s almost a ringer for said high school boyfriend’s older brother. Shave his scruff, pop him into white tie, and tell him to turn on his signature smirk.

Oona Chaplin has the right face for Cordelia—long, downturned nose, freckles, toothy smile. Plus she has incredible acting range, which is a necessity when you’ve got a character whose arc is as long and wide as Cordelia’s. She can play raging, snarky, sexy, and emotionally devastated with equal facility.

The problem of Aristide seemed insurmountable, initially. I was leaning strongly toward Taye Diggs. He’s sultry, smart, and a triple threat. That smile and that musical theatre cred would serve him well onstage at the Bumble Bee Cabaret.

Then I finally watched Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life and remembered how deliciously scathing Yanic Truesdale is as Michel. Sorry Taye, but Yanic might have won this round.
Visit Lara Elena Donnelly's website.

--Marshal Zeringue