Twelve Things I Love About You

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Heh. Alert Janeite Diana Birchall sent us a hilarious article by Craig Brown in The Daily Telegraph, having a great time with Janemania: Twelve little-known facts about Jane Austen.

1 It has been estimated that at any one time around the world there are more than 600 Jane Austen adaptations being produced. China has increased its Jane Austen output by 400 per cent over the past five years, and looks set to be the world leader by 2012.

Next month alone sees the premieres of Northanger on Ice, starring Jayne Torvill as Catherine Morland, and BBC TV’s new Mansfield Park, starring Jordan as Jayne Mansfield.

For the record, we would watch both of those.

6 In autumn 2010, the Walt Disney corporation opens The Jane Austen Experience on a 50-acre site on the outskirts of Bath. Visitors are greeted by a 12ft high Jane Austen, dressed in period costume. Jane leads them into The Ballroom, where they can watch Jane dancing to a traditional Regency rhythm with a 15ft high Mr Darcy.

At least he’s tall!

10 Up to 75 columnists a week introduce a note of erudition into their articles by beginning them with the phrase “It is a truth universally acknowledged that…”

Recent examples include, “It is a truth universally acknowledged that the new two-door Ford Capri is an absolute dream to handle” (Jeremy Clarkson, Sunday Times) and, “It is a truth universally acknowledged that my so-called ex is an insufferable prat, whinger and serial shagger” (Liz Jones, Mail on Sunday) and, “It is a truth universally acknowledged that there were times when King Henry VIII could be a right royal bastard” (Dr David Starkey, Monarchy Today).

*falls over laughing* (and it is so true!)

12 A new version of Persuasion, re-named Me, I Don’t Take Much Persuasion and scripted by Andrew Davies, is soon to be filmed, with Pamela Anderson as Anne and Mickey Rourke as Captain Wentworth.

In an arresting new opening, Anne and Captain Wentworth are seen making love in a Regency bed; the middle scenes also see them in bed together, and they are in bed together, too, in the final scene, only this time the bed is of a slightly later design, to emphasise the passage of time.

“It’s what Jane Austen would have wanted,” says Andrew Davies, who is now working on his next adaptation, this time of EM Forster’s Howard’s Bottom.

See? It’s not just us. šŸ™‚