Great Adaptations Introduction
Mondays and Wednesdays in November
Among the greatest satisfactions for movie fans is seeing a beloved novel successfully transferred to the screen, or reading a book that provided the basis for a favorite film. With this blockbuster of a festival, Turner Classic Movies puts a spotlight on cinematic treatments of great novels in a wide array of genres, encompassing 92 movies and a huge number and variety of subjects.
On most Mondays and Wednesdays, 24-hour blocks of programming are devoted to single themes starting in primetime and continuing into the following day. An exception is November 21, when the genre of Southern Literature (including such classic films as 1939's Gone With the Wind and 1962's To Kill a Mockingbird) gives way to Stories for Children and Young Adults on Thanksgiving Day. In the latter category is an entertaining TCM premiere, Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm (1938), starring 10-year-old Shirley Temple and inspired by Kate Douglas Wiggin's much-loved bucolic novel.
Two other themes feature TCM premieres. Adventure Novels include Jack London's often-filmed Far North adventure The Call of the Wild in a 1935 version starring Clark Gable and Loretta Young. Among Western Novels is Apache Territory (1958), adapted from the Louis L'Amour novel, with Rory Calhoun as the leader of a small band of travelers threatened by Indians.
Numerous other highlights include cinematic adaptations of American Literature (John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath, 1940; F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby, 1974), National Book Award Winners and Finalists (Nelson Algren's The Man with the Golden Arm, 1955; James Jones' From Here to Eternity, 1953) and British Literature (Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, 1940; Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre, 1943).
Selected guests including actors Dane DeHaan, Griffin Dunne, Jack Huston and Daniel Radcliffe will appear to comment on how literary movies have affected and inspired them.
By Roger Fristoe