Perhaps because it’s been awhile since movie-going audiences were clobbered over the head with a true adaptation of a Thomas Hardy novel, Fox Searchlight has set a very recognizable and very talented cast to bring his “Far from the Madding Crowd” to life. Hardy’s book, his fourth published and his first true success, is a literary classic and, despite (or perhaps because of) its many complicated relationships and jaw-dropping tragic turns, should make a very juicy historical piece. If not, at least high school teachers everywhere will have a fresh film to show their students post-reading.
Carey Mulligan is now confirmed to lead the cast, and she’s joined by Matthias Schoenaerts, Michael Sheen, Tom Sturridge, and Juno Temple. Mulligan stars as Bathsheba Everdene (a distant relative of Katniss?), a glamorous young lady who turns a rural British countryside upside down with her arrival – particularly the lives of three different suitors (a sheep farmer, a sergeant, and a rich bachelor, which makes this sound like the worst episode of “The Dating Game” ever). We did mention there’s eventual tragedy afoot, right? Because there is eventual tragedy afoot (though little can match Hardy’s “Jude the Obscure” when it comes to tragedy and horrible life lessons about not falling in love with your cousin).
Directed by Thomas Vinterberg, who made waves last year with the Mads Mikkelsen-starrer The Hunt, the film also comes with an adapted script by screenwriter and novelist David Nicholls (who recently scripted a miniseries take on Hardy’s most well-known novel, “Tess of the D’Urbervilles”). Have you read “Far from the Madding Crowd”? Interested in seeing this take on the story? Let us know below.
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