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A Hollywood Ending

by M.G. Siegler


"The future of filmmaking lives in Ava DuVernay’s iPhone."

Angela Watercutter sat down with the director:

With A Wrinkle in Time, DuVernay, who is working from a script by Frozen’s Jennifer Lee, is injecting that universality into a text that didn’t necessarily anticipate it. “Folks shouldn’t expect a page-for-page re-creation of the book,” DuVernay says. “They should expect a page-for-page embracing of what I feel the author meant—which is a story about an underdog.”
Admittedly, what L’Engle meant to say with A Wrinkle in Time has perplexed people for decades. Her manuscript confused some publishers, who couldn’t figure out if it was for kids or adults; 26 of them ultimately rejected it. It was sci-fi with a young girl at its center, which was mostly unheard of in the early 1960s. It imagined a world in which the themes of science and religion could coexist, making it too religious for some and blasphemous for others. It’s been banned off and on for years, and it’s also a beloved best-seller. The book is, and L’Engle was, an outsider that succeeded.
That’s genre fiction for you. What was, half a century ago, unthinkable—a counterculture rescue quest through time and space with a girl in the lead—is today a recognized norm. Science fiction, long derided for childishness and subcultural irrelevance, is now mainstream Hollywood’s primary output: 14 of the top 20 grossing films of all time are science fiction or fantasy.

A Wrinkle in Time was one of my favorite books when I was a child. I cannot wait to see what DuVernay does with it. Great profile overall.


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