Adapting Plays Into Movies
“In theatre, you can change things ever so slightly; it’s an organic thing. Whereas in film, you only have that chance on the day, and you have no control over it at all,” These insightful words were once spoken by actress (Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace) and Oscar winner Judi Dench, and they very clearly illustrate one of the biggest differences between theatre and film. However, a small hint of bias seems to be depicted in this point of view. The quote (and many others) seem to suggest that one form of acting is more difficult than the other. It seems the opposite is true; that when taking one of these art forms (i.e. theatre) and transforming it into the other, one would come across a wide array of differences, as well as similarities.
When researching a topic such as this, one must go beyond reading. One must not only dive into a script or a periodical or academic journal, one must immerse themselves into the films that have come about as a result of the transformation of turning a play into a cinematic experience. When going about researching this topic, I watched the movie Chicago (Dir. Rob Marshall, 2002) as well as looked over the original Broadway script (By Jon Kander, Fredd Ebb, and Bob Fosse 1975). The original Broadway production opened June 3, 1975, at the 46th Street Theatre and ran for 936 performances. Chicago's 1996 Broadway revival holds the record for the longest-running musical revival and the longest-running American musical in Broadway history, and is the fourth longest-running show in Broadway history. After all the success, What better way to continue the magic of this thrilling show than create a movie out of it? The story tells of two women (Roxie Hart and Velma Kelley) who live in Chicago and are responsible for murdering their husbands and must fight to get out of prison, in order to pursue their dreams of Broadway stardom.
After deciding to delve a bit deeper, I chose to go a bit farther back in...
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