Thursday, April 02, 2009

Why the Movies Love Big Publishing

The Proposal, a new Sandra Bullock date movie, is set to open early this summer. The Guardian book blog’s Alison Flood and Lindesay Irvine want to know, “Why does Hollywood love working in publishing so much?”
Why is it, exactly, that the world of books exerts such an irresistible draw to the world of film? Not literary adaptations -- you can see why they’re so popular -- but the rather less obvious charms of publishing's back rooms.

The latest addition to the field is The Proposal, in which Sandra Bullock plays a “high-powered book editor” facing deportation to her native Canada (she looks amazing in her fitted black suit and high heels in the poster, but far more sharply dressed than any book editor I’ve ever met). It’s a romantic comedy, so naturally there’s a fake engagement to be dealt with, and “one comedic fish-out-of-water situation after another”.
And though they ask the question, at one point, they answer it in part when they say that creating Bullock’s character as an editor is a kind of storytelling short-hand. “Without having to go into details, it immediately presents her as intelligent, well-read, interesting.”

While this is certainly true, I think there’s something else, as well. Here’s the thing: as hokey as Flood and Irvine might know this to be, Hollywood loves publishing the way everyone else loves Hollywood. In either case, what’s the big attraction? Both Hollywood and big publishing frame our tomorrows, they package up our dreams.

The Guardian book blog piece is here.



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Monday, April 6, 2009 at 4:56:00 AM PDT  

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