Brontë is still the new Austen, and the press still needs Cluebatting

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Now that the press has discovered that Jane Austen is out and the Brontës are in, we suspect we will have more amusing and Cluebat-worthy articles like this one in USAToday, as the press, unlike Charles Musgrove, just loves to neglect the reigning power to bow to the rising sun.

Filmmakers’ long affair with the divine Miss Austen is finally waning, after two decades of movies made from her elegant novels with their well-mannered characters, placid plots and witty repartee

Wait a minute–there was a gap of SIX YEARS from 1999 MP to 2005 P&P. Are we ignoring that now? Are we also ignoring the 1996 Zefferelli adaptation of Jane Eyre, and the 1992 adaptation of Wuthering Heights starring Juliette Binoche and Ralph Fiennes, and whatever happened to that planned biopic about the Brontës that was supposed to star Michelle Williams and some other flavors of the month? Of course we’re ignoring all the TV adaptations (two each of JE and WH, by our count, as well as one of The Tenant of Wildfell Hall). They don’t “count,” despite the fact that many people will see the “Hollywood” films once in their local house and then over and over at home.

But enough with the endless circling of the Pump Room at Bath — time to get hearts racing! Time to bring back those wildly Romantic Brontë characters — plain Jane Eyre and moody Mr. Rochester, doomed Cathy Earnshaw and vengeful Heathcliff — to rend their garments, wail disconsolately and stagger across windswept moors.

We’ll forgive this, since they used the title case for Romantic. That gives it a different connotation. (But does Jane Eyre ever purposely rend her garments? Dunno.)

“Austen’s characters achieve their greatness through a kind of sideways movement toward happiness, (while) the Brontës hurtle themselves headlong into the maelstrom of emotions and situations,” says James Schamus, head of Focus Features, the artsy studio that made Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and now is making Jane Eyre (with BBC Films) with hot young director Cary Fukunaga (Sin Nombre).

“Besides, those nasty tar-hearted uptight purist spinster Austen Bloggers complained when we tried to turn P&P into Wuthering Heights. Don’t they understand that this is ART?” Continue reading

Brontë is the new Austen

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So sayeth the Times.

Alison Owen, the producer of Jane Eyre (and mother of the singer Lily Allen), said: “There is something about the current situation that the world finds itself in where the Brontës more suit the mood of the moment [than Austen]. Jane Austen is a lighter cut than the Brontës, who are much more brooding and bleak.”

Dorothy is presently doing the Superior Dance in the conservatory, and we must admit to being rather overjoyed ourself. With all due respect to our good friends at BrontëBlog, let them go pick on the Haworth trio for a while! The carpetbaggers have exploited Jane long enough, and should give the other lady writers time to exhibit.