Friday, August 01, 2008

Friday, August 01, 2008 2:17 pm by Cristina in , ,    9 comments
Didn't we say the Wuthering Heights film version on the works (not to be confused with the ITV version!) was starting to have many similarities with the Brontë biopic? Mainly because for one reason or another they can never start filming. First Natalie Portman abandoned the project soon after taking it on. And although it now seems that Abbie Cornish, an Australian actress, has agreed to play Cathy, as the Daily Mail reports, the article also says that apparently John Maybury, the director, has quit the project.
The high-profile movie production of Wuthering Heights has had more drama behind the scenes than the plot of Emily Bronte's famous novel - and that's before a single scene has been shot.

Natalie Portman was cast as the movie's heroine Catherine Earnshaw, then withdrew under mysterious circumstances; Keira Knightley dismissed overtures because she didn't want 'sloppy seconds'; Sienna Miller was courted for about a minute but that dalliance was ditched on the Yorkshire Moors; and now I can reveal that the picture's director John Maybury has withdrawn because, it's claimed, he didn't like the screenplay.

The search is now on for another filmmaker to take hold of the literary classic.

The new director, whoever he or she may be, will at least find actors in place to
play the leading roles.

Fast-rising thespian Michael Fassbender is already signed to play the brooding Heathcliff, and Australian actress Abbie Cornish has agreed to play Cathy.

In fact, they make an ideal cast to bring Bronte's revered characters to life on celluloid. All they need now is a director to shout: 'Action!'

It's a shame about Maybury's quitting because he would have injected a dangerous edginess to the costume drama, the producers must find a new director who possesses a visual flair and a sense of daring.

I hope Fassbender remains with the project because he is an exciting actor, and when I last spoke to him he was brimming with ideas on how he would bring Heathcliff to life. [...]

Fassbender has a powerful screen presence - just what Wuthering Heights will need, whoever directs it. (Baz Bamigboye)
We are quite shocked as John Maybury seemed to be quite a driving force behind this production. But we hope that Michael Fassbender and now Abbie Cornish - though not quite our initial image of Cathy, more like the candidate Sienna Miller rather than Natalie Portman - stay put and that some great director comes along and strats filming for once and for all.

The First Post has an article on the subject as well:
It is not known exactly why Maybury, whose credits include the recent Dylan Thomas movie The Edge of Love, left, but the Daily Mail claims it was down to differences of opinion between himself and the producers over the script and cast (as reported on The First Post, Maybury was never keen on Portman taking the lead role). It seems the project had moved into a direction he was not happy with. In a recent interview, Maybury said that the producers initially wanted "a weird, dark version of the weird, dark tale", but it soon became apparent that was not the case.
(Picture source)

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  1. Okay. Wow. Was not expecting that. I wonder what state this production is really in. However, i was watching a programme about the making of Gone with the Wind today, and they had two directors leave the project. So maybe out of the chaous a masterpiece will be created.

    As for Abbie Cornish. She is quite and intelligent and deep actress. So i think she will be a good Cathy in that sense. But, yes there is an issue about physical appearance. However, what i do like about her is that she's not fragile looking, i could believe she could get over the Yorkshire moors. I just hope both stay on the project. My head is spinning with all this.

    Why can't it be as organised as the ITV version?

  2. Good to hear that about Abbi Cornish, Faye. If she's a good actress as you say he perfomance will make us look past her looks.

    I don't really know how this affects the time schedule of the film but it could look as if what we initially thought would be two different versions too near in time won't be so-

  3. Yeah. I've just seen some recent pics of Abbie and her hair is dark now. So that helps.

    I think she's probably the most talented actress that has been linked to the part thus far, so i hope she stays with it. I still prefer Hayley Atwell though. Lol

    Yeah, i don't see how they are going to keep with that October start date now.

    Let's just hope that both Michael and Abbie stay and everything else is sorted out and there's no more drama.

  4. Good to hear that. Hopefully she will stay and they get hold of a new director soon. I was joking about Tim Burton a few days ago - wouldn't he film Wuthering Heights from a totally new perspective? :P

  5. Lol. But then he'd recast it with Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter as Heathcliff and Cathy. :)

  6. Oh, no doubt about that! And music by Danny Elfman:) Am I alone thinking that wouldn't be quite so bad? And anyway, you will remember those rumours about Johnny Depp playing Heathcliff ages ago (with Angelina Jolie as Cathy...).

  7. I don't think Tim Burton would be good for Wuthering Heights. I don't know, i think all his films look comical gothic rather than atmospheric gothic, that i'd like Wuthering Heights. Although, i can't say it wouldn't intrigue me.

    Lol. God yes!! I remember the Johnny and Angelina rumours. You know i think i think they were the two " a list stars" that were attached to the M Night Shyamalan (that's spelt wrong) project for 20th Century Fox. Speaking of i wonder what will happen with that scripe Michael Hirst was doinf for them.

  8. Michael Fassbender is a perfect choice, but Hans Matheson gets my vote too. I'm not sure if Abbie Cornish has the right look or Cathy's feistiness, but we will see. I think Gemma Arterton would be perfect. I certainly hope they keep in with the dark edginess of the recent BRILLIANT ITV version, with Heathcliff and Cathy's authentic Yorkshire accents. We don't want to make it 'posh', that's not what the novel was about.

  9. You've watched Tess of the D'Urbevilles, havent you? Yes, Gemma Arterton and Hans Matheson ESPECIALLY would be lovely, but yes, Michael Fassbender is perfect all the same. His recent performance in Jane Eyre was brilliant i thought! He really brought that eerie gothic feeling the novel posesses to life. Certainly he will do the same with Wuthering Heights, being eerier yet.

    I hope they find a director!!