HOLLYWOOD – The Weinstein’s War and Peace mini-series – to be co-produced with the BBC – will be a truncated version, sources admit.
Paul Dano is set to star as Pierre Bezuhkov, the pacifist hero of Leo Tolstoy’s epic novel. He will be joined by Ade Edmondson as Count Rostov, as well as Stephen Rea and Greta Scacchi.
Andrew Davies was given the job of adapting the massive Russian masterpiece, but reports from the Weinsteins were that his version was too long.
Harvey just didn’t like it. There was too much about relationships and peasants and far too much about the Russian soil. Russia is a bit of a downer at the moment. What with Putin and all that. So let’s just say that Harvey had some notes.
What changes can we expect?
We wanted to change the setting, away from Russia and towards New Mexico, but Andrew and the BBC were opposed to that. So we at least managed to get the narrative moving a little. If you’ve read the book, you’ll know that it features some of the most amazing set pieces ever put to paper. But then there are all these conversations. So what we did was get rid of the conversations and concentrate a lot more on the military aspect.
War will be broadcast in 2015.
WELLINGTON – Lord of the Rings, Hobbit and Tin Tin prevaricator Peter Jackson has revealed that his post-Hobbit project – an ambitious adaptation of Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace.
And perhaps unsurprisingly it will be a trilogy.
Peter Jackson spoke from his underground lair:
I’ve always been a huge fan of L.V.V. Tolstoy and his wonderful fantasy books. Anna Karenina, which is all about this Elf princess, is a bit mopey so I thought I’d start my honoring of his work with War and Peace, which is set in the fantastical kingdom of Russia. A darkness has descended on the land as a dark lord called Napoleon threatens invasion. The innocent Muscovites set out on a mission to do battle.
You know it isn’t a fantasy book?
Of course, the scale of the book means that we can’t really do justice to it in a single film so…
So you’re dividing…
Dividing the book into three films. The first film War will be released in 2019, followed by And in 2020 and Peace in 2021.
The first installment of War and Peace will be released in 2019.
MELBOURNE – Baz Luhrmann has announced he is to direct a new cinematic version of the Russian classic Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace, starring Hugh Jackman as Pierre Bezhukov and Nicole Kidman as Natasha Rostova.
The Strictly Ballroom director said:
I’ve done Shakespeare, definitively with Romeo + Juliet, adding that plus sign just to show I’m not afraid of the bald bastard. I’ve mastered F. Scott Fitzgerald with everyone bar none agreeing my Great Gatsby was a million times better than his ruddy novella. I’ve even done an entire bloody continent with Australia, where I was so bold I cast Nicole as a bloody Pom. So what’s left for me to do? Who can rise to the challenge of being worthy of the Luhrmann? Bazzer the boy? Eh? Eh? It was either Fifty Shades of Grey or Tolstoy and they wanted a Sheila to do the former so I got lumped with beardy.
What changes can we expect?
None. None whatsoever. I’ve decided to be entirely faithful to the book. I know this is a departure for me but on reading the book, or at least on reading the first few pages cause it’s bloody long and Candy Crush isn’t going to play itself, I thought to myself: this is fairly impressive. He’s no J.K: Rowling but he can write a bit this old Ruskie. So I reckon I’ll keep true to the ‘spirit’ of the book, very closely.
Robin Williams will take the part of Napoleon and the music will be provided by a host of contemporary stars of the music scene, including Pharrel Williams, Ke$ha and Jay-Z.
Leo Tolstoy’s Hip + Hop will be released in 2015.