Whit Stillman’s Love and Friendship to premiere at Sundance Film Festival
Love and Friendship, directed by Whit Stillman, will be screened for the first time on the 23rd of January at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival.
The highly anticipated film is based on Austen’s 1871 epistolary novel Lady Susan, with its title taken from a much loved example of Austen’s juvenilia, Love and Friendship.
The lead role of Lady Susan will be played by Kate Beckinsale, known for her roles in Pearl Harbour and Underworld. She will be accompanied by Chloe Sevigny, who takes on the role of Lady Susan’s sidekick, Alicia Johnson. Stephen Fry will also feature in the film, playing the role of Mr. Johnson. Filming took place early last year in Dublin.
Stillman, who is best known for his work on Metropolitan and The Last Days of Disco, admits to having previously had a rocky relationship with the works of Jane Austen. Stillman read, and initially disliked, Northanger Abbey. Speaking to Vanity Fair, Stillman said of his first encounter with Austen’s works: ‘I didn’t like [Northanger Abbey] at all. I didn’t get it. And I would loudly tell people that she was overrated and bad for a long time. Until, after college, my sister said, “You better read Pride and Prejudice.” I did, and it changed me.’
Lady Susan has previously been adapted for stage and television, but Stillman’s is the first movie production of the novel. Speaking of the character of Lady Susan, Stillman said ‘[i]t’s really this funny, extravagant, manipulative character. It’s comedy. We just had a lot of fun with the character. We felt that if we changed things, if we amplified things, if we added characters that we needed to make it a film, we were part of her process of finishing it rather than taking one of her masterpieces and reducing it to a 90-minute film.’
IMDB states that the film is currently due to be released on the 27th of April 2016.
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