The Shape of Things

the-shape-of-things

When the movie version of My Fair Lady premiered — 50 years ago today — it was an adaptation of a stage show that was a musical remake of a play that was loosely based on an ancient myth. Once again: “originality” is not that big a deal and never has been. Proof has continued in the legacy of all these properties in the half century since. Even now on television there is a sitcom so admittedly based on Pygmalion that the characters are named Eliza Dooley and Henry Higgs. The fact that most people call this show, Selfie, a modern take on the musical rather than George Bernard Shaw‘s earlier drama is not a surprise. Different generations have their reference point. In She’s All That, for instance, Rachel Leigh Cook’s character says, “I feel just like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman. You know, except for the whole hooker thing.” She could have said Eliza Doolittle. There are certain movies and other media that are clearly more linked to the play and musical (i.e. Pretty Woman) involving a lower class person transformed by someone of a better social level. Then there are still those that go directly to the source (i.e. Mannequin) where someone falls in love with an initially inanimate creation. The scenario has easily been the basis for many high school movies (including She’s All That) and even some porn films (notably The Opening of Misty Beethoven) and doesn’t always have to be a romantic plot, as in the case of […]

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LaBute

Playwright, screenwriter, and filmmaker Neil LaBute‘s stories aren’t for the faint of heart. They can be grueling in their dark humor, awkwardness and characters who will go as far as they have to for their own gain. Some Girl(s), which LaBute scripted from his own stage play, recently made its premiere at SXSW and sits comfortably in the gut-punching world his fans have come to love. The lead of the film, the Man (Adam Brody), is a selfish, narcissistic writer who isn’t afraid of embarrassing others with his stories. According to LaBute, he himself isn’t that kind of man, and none of his personal life sneaks into his work. The writer and director of In the Company of Men, The Shape of Things, and others creates from his imagination, choosing not to pirate from his own life or others. When we see the protagonist of Some Girl(s) doing so, it makes for an annoyingly oblivious character, but as LaBute tells us, he never sets out to annoy the audience with his conniving. The writer of Some Girl(s) was kind enough to speak with us at great length about those uncomfortable stories he’s famous for, how The Wickerman isn’t based on his life, and more about his process:

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RachelWeiszKarynKusama

The director of Jennifer’s Body is looking for a new playmate, and Rachel Weisz is the right woman for the gender-bending job.

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