Friday, March 3, 2017

Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch's "Making Bombs for Hitler"

Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch is the acclaimed author of over sixteen picture books and novels. Her earlier picture books include Enough, Silver Threads, Daughter of War, Aram's Choice and The Best Gifts. She won the Silver Birch Fiction Award for Making Bombs for Hitler and the Red Cedar Award for Last Airlift: A Vietnamese Orphan's Rescue from War.

Here Skrypuch dreamcasts an adaptation of Making Bombs for Hitler:
Making Bombs for Hitler is the story of Lida, a young girl who is captured by the Nazis and forced into slave labor -- an Ostarbeiter. Shortly after her capture, she meets Luka, a fellow slave laborer, and they form a special friendship. Lida is horrified to be assigned to bomb-making for the Germans. Then she has an idea. What if she sabotaged the bombs... and the Nazis?

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I had a Skype visit with a grade 4 class and one student asked if Making Bombs for Hitler would be made into a movie. We all agreed that it would be awesome, and since we were on the subject, I asked them who they thought should play Lida. I got no names of child actors. Instead, the students volunteered themselves.

I totally get that -- I’m Lida too!

They also liked the casting of the girl who played Lida in the Scholastic book trailer.

But if I had to choose, my Lida would be Willow Shields if she could turn back time and become eleven years old again. Her role as Prim Everdeen in The Hunger Games showed that she’s able to brilliantly convey the kind of inner strength, generosity and positive outlook that’s so much a part of who Lida is.

My Luka would be a thirteen year old Josh Hutcherson, who played Peeta from The Hunger Games. I like the solid inner strength that seems to seep from his pores.

It was tough trying to think of who would do justice to Lida’s vulnerable little sister Larissa. Dakota Fanning when she was in I Am Sam has the right look.

The two adults who play the biggest roles in Lida’s life at the slave camp are Officer Schmidt and Inge, the laundress. Ralph Fiennes is great at oozing banal evil – so he’d be an awesome Schmidt. Phyllis Smith, who played the teacher in The OA, would be great for the complexity of Inge.
Visit Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch's website.

--Marshal Zeringue