Here we go again!
Back in 2009, Seth Grahame-Smith decided to have a go at Jane Austen’s 1813 classic novel Pride And Prejudice – about a young woman as she deals with the important issues of early 19th-century England (manners, education, marriage, status, et al) – by placing the novel in an alternate timeline where zombies roam the English countryside and are referred to as “stricken,” “sorry stricken,” “unmentionables,” flat out “zombies,” and their presence is seen as a “troublesome and deadly nuisance.”
Because Grahame-Smith mashes his vision with Austen’s (and credits her as co-author), the original plot line gets a bit skewed as the occasional messenger is caught and eaten – resulting in missed messages. Some characters break down others’ zombie-fighting skills, and the women (naturally) debate form over function when it comes to carrying a musket in order to protect themselves.
And because of exceptionally good timing on his part (2009 saw the revival of the zombie genre with games like Left 4 Dead), the book became a smash hit, spawning a graphic novel and mobile game in 2010, an interactive e-book, and talks about a film adaptation that have been in talks since 2009 that finally came to fruition in 2011…but it died in development.
Looks like waiting two years was the ticket – not only has Pride and Prejudice and Zombies locked in their leads, they’re set to start shooting next month!
Deadline reports Lily James (“Downton Abbey”) will take on the role of Elizabeth Bennet, with Bella Heathcote (Dark Shadows) as her younger sister and Sam Riley (Maleficent) as the one and only Mr. Darcy. Plus, Jack Huston (“Boardwalk Empire”) in talks to take on a role as well, which is very exciting!
Burr Steers (Charlie St. Cloud) is directing the screenplay, which he and Oscar-winner David O. Russell (Silver Linings Playbook) wrote. Steers also has some heavyweight producers that include Oscar-winner Natalie Portman (who was set to star at one time, but ultimately bowed out), so the only way to go from here is up.
I’m admittedly a little bored with the zombie genre – sometimes too much of a good thing can backfire – but as shooting begins next month, I still have high hopes for this film.
What say you, zombiephiles? Will you see this film when it hits theaters in 2015?
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