After 2011 when two Brontë film adaptations were premiered followed two years (2012, 2013) dominated by the frenzy of mash-up novels, young adult revisitations and the latest erotic retellings under the shadow of the fifty shades, everything suggests that this will be a quiet year in the Brontë front.
The big screen news will probably spin around the Clothworkers Films production of a Brontë biopic initially scheduled for 2016 (to coincide with the bicentenary of Charlotte Brontë's birth).We are pretty sure that this year will bring some news about the cast and crew that will be delivered through its active Twitter and Facebook accounts and its quite indefatigable communication strategy.
January will also bring a collector's limited edition set of Wuthering Heights 1967 for Region 2 combined with a hardback illustrated book under the title The Brontës: Their Lives and Works. An edition of 1000 copies released by Front Row Books.
Although already published in the UK, the new Brontë Parsonage Museum guide will be widely available this year. It's an up-to-date, room-by-room description of the Parsonage (after the big redecoration of last year) and is signed by a dream team of Parsonage people: Ann Sumner, Ann Dinsdale and Kathryn White (the Brontë Society executive director, the Collections Manager and an ex-Curator of the museum). Amberley Publishing, on the other hand, will continue its collection of books centered on the pictorial history of Haworth with Haworth from Old Maps by Steven Wood.
Michaela MacColl will give us the Brontë fiction dose in Always Emily. A sort of YA version of the Laura Joh Rowland's Charlotte Brontë saga (or the Jane Eyre Chronicles by Joanna Campbell Slan) which promises a story about Charlotte and Emily involved in an romantic intrigue. The author knows her business as she has previously written similar historical fiction about Emily Dickinson or Princess Victoria. We have no confirmation but it is possible that another YA fantasy novel about the Brontës will be published in 2014: Lena Coakley's The Worlds Below (provisional title) which will deliver the Brontë children to their fantasy worlds of Angria and Gondal for real.
The retellings and sequels category will be nurtured mostly by the self-published ebook world but maybe Ramon Pérez's illustrated modern-day retelling of Jane Eyrewill see the light in 2014. And Solsbury Hillby Susan M. Wyler, another modern retelling of Wuthering Heights, will be published in April.
And finally, the Brontë Parsonage Museum after its January closing will reopen with a new exhibition: The Brontës and the Animals. In March it will take place the fourth Brontë Festival of Women’s Writing with the presence of writers such as Jackie Kay and Susan Dunant.
Finally a word of caution, this is just a temptative list. We are certain that many more Brontë events will break out in the next twelve months. As usual.