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Baz Luhrmann Adapting Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby Next

by
December 18, 2008
Source: Deadline Hollywood

Baz Luhrmann

Although Australia sadly ended up as one of this year's biggest flops (currently at $39 million), filmmaker Baz Luhrmann has already started work on his next project - F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby. Nikki Finke of Deadline Hollywood confirms that this is Luhrmann's next gig and that he's already actively searching for a young actress to portray Daisy in the film. This isn't the first time Fitzgerald's book has been adapted - there was a 1974 film directed by Jack Clayton as well as a 1949 film directed by Elliott Nugent. However, I'm expecting Luhrmann's version to be much more grandiose and certainly very epic.

The Great GatsbyFirst published in 1925, F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby chronicles an era that Fitzgerald himself dubbed the "Jazz Age." The story is presented as a recollection of Nick Carraway, a young man from a patrician Midwestern family who lived in New York after graduating from Yale in the early 1920s. Nick declares that, following his father's advice, he avoids judging people: a habit that has caused trouble, exemplified by events concerning a man named Gatsby. Eventually Nick meets the wealthy Daisy Buchanan and begins a love affair with her which plays out through the remainder of the book.

If I must comment on this news, while I am a Baz Luhrmann fan, I'm not yet convinced The Great Gatsby will turn as wonderful as any of his previous films. I definitely won't argue the significance of this American classic, however, it just doesn't seem like a story that's best suited for the screen. Then again, I haven't read it since I was first forced to do so back in school years ago, and maybe there's something more to it that Luhrmann can pull out. Whatever the case, this certainly seems like another wholly ambitious project for Luhrmann and I definitely wish him the best of luck. Can any devout fans of The Great Gatsby convince me that there is a good cinematic story to tell?

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  • janet
    The Great Gatsby is hands down my favorite book so I find this news really exciting. The 1974 film was kind of dull and left something to be desired in my opinion. I agree that this book might not be the easiest to adapt but I'm glad that they are trying. I look forward to hearing the casting announcements.
  • jazzfan360
    It's my favorite book and I've read it dozens of times, but 1) I don't trust Baz's wild "visionary" auteur style with something so sacred to me, not at all, and 2) as much as I'd love to see it done well, I think Gatsby is unadaptable. The bulk of the story is in the narrative observations of Nick, which cannot all be conveyed in nearly the same way on film. The novel's biggest strength is in its extremely sensitive and colorful descriptions. And also, the central character, Gatsby, has VERY little dialogue--a conscious choice on Fitzgerald's part to keep the character as mystical as possible. You can't translate the novel to film and keep that mystique because you HAVE to give him more dialogue. Not the same.
  • tashawnda
    your full of shit jazzfan360
  • Sojourner
    I agree with #2 for the most part. Except, I think that Baz, might be able to bring something out of the book that I haven't seen before and for that I am willing to be patient.
  • I'm more shcoked and dissapointed that Australia flopped. I'm headed to cinema as soon as its out on Boxing Day.
  • Shelby
    I really cannot wait for this. Although Australia didn't do so hot, I do like his other films. And Nick never had a love affair with Daisy. That was Jay Gatsby.
  • misdf
    Why is it that firstshowing never checks their facts, i remember they screwed something up with the news of Paul Newmans death, and now this. Nick doesn't fall in love with daisy, she's his cousin. Gatsby is in love with her. All you had to do was read the description on amazon.
  • nef deppard
    Though I have enjoyed Luhrmann's earlier efforts, as an Aussie I am glad Australia flopped. Considering that he filled it with no end of historical inaccuracies and lies it deserved no better. Also his trashing of the Australian people over the fabricated story of "Stolen Generations" is a disgrace. Not one aboriginal child was ever removed for racial reasons, but for their own safety. So phooey on Gatsby.
  • Will S.
    I have a feeling it'd turn out like any adaptation of "Pride and Prejudice" or even Shakespeare. However, some of the better movies of all time have stemmed from literature, such as "The Grapes of Wrath" with Henry Fonda or "To Kill a Mockingbird" with Gregory Peck. So I'll keep an open mind from 20 feet away.
  • al
    not only did Luhrmann deliver a great film with Australia, but also created a film thats budget was so high and had such small returns, that he added another variable that may infact destroy the evil empire (Fox) Thats a film hero to me. Can't wait for Gatsby.
  • Voice Of Reason
    NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO This is awful, awful, awful. Not only is the Redford classic untouchable and stand alone from the book, this is TERRIBLE news. This is the man that BUTCHERED a classic already, perhaps you remember the celluloid embarrassment that was ROMEO & JULIET? You misguided, delusional, poor-taste prone fools who support ham-fisted-Baz are exactly what help bring a constant onslaught of shit into theatres. God, each one of you who looks forward to this deserve to have their eyeballs ripped away from their skulls. Ripped. You probably like george lucas's modern works, too, dontcha? Ripped. The sentence, "Baz Luhrmann Adapting Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby" should make anyone cringe and fear for the worst.
  • Peloquin
    Looks like Hollywood is stealing original ideas from Entourage once again...
  • Tatrina
    i suppose that is is not a well thought-out message, especially in regards to the newest production in the public's attention...however...upon finding myself at a loss at expressing my admiration to all of the artists and professionals involved previous Luhrmann projects, i fell that though attention would be addressed more if I wrote my thoughts on a more current webpage, as opposed to one designed half a decade ago. To Sir Luhrmann I offer my humble congratulations and thanks. To address such a broad audience, and to touch each audience member so intimately is no accomplishment to be taken lightly. My honest wish is that masters of such craft share their drives and inspirations with future generations....so that the art of individual passions will not be passed on to our children through cheap movie rentals or video games. I understand that few people will ever view my comment, and that even fewer will ever take the time to read it...but i suppose that this is how our fast paced world operates. That i took the time to find the space to write my thoughts, and even proof read my short message, is the closest that i will ever come to offering any of you my personal thanks, i bid you much gratitude and even more happiness in days to come.

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