'Napoleon Dynamite' Writer Making Directing Debut with 'Austenland'

July 5, 2011
Source: Heat Vision


Though you've probably seen her name on the big screen for writing films like Napoleon Dynamite and Nacho Libre, writer Jerusha Hess is now set to follow in her husband Jared Hess' footsteps (he directed the aforementioned comedies) with her directorial debut in the form of an adaptation of Shannon Hale's novel Austenland. In addition, Heat Vision reports the film will also mark the producing debut of The Twilight Saga author Stephanie Meyer. Making the talent pool behind this film all the more interesting, Keri Russell (Waitress) and Bret Mackenzie ("Flight of the Conchords") are set to star in the film, too.

J.J. Field, who plays Union Jack in Captain America: The First Avenger, Jennifer Coolidge, Jane Seymour, Rupert Vansittart and James Callis round out the cast of the film which follows a single thirty-something woman with a secret obsession with Mr. Darcy (the character from Pride and Prejudice) that is ruining her love life because no real-life man compares to the fictional character. However, when she decides to spend her life savings on a trip to an English resort catering to Jane Austen-crazed women, the woman's fantasy of meeting the perfect Regency-era gentleman becomes more real than she could have imagined. Sounds kind of cheesy, but the involvement of Bret Mackenzie is almost enough to get me interested. It'll alsobe interesting to see if this film has the same eccentric, quirky style as the rest of the films the Hess duo have put together.

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Reader Feedback - 4 Comments


Hollywood's Mormon elite takes on a Jane Austen meta-romcom starring C-list actors. I couldn't be farther from the target audience.

whatafy on Jul 6, 2011


It isn't her life savings she uses.  it's an inheritance from a relative.  I just hope they leave out the curse words from the book and the huge men's organ description when the man is trying to seduce our main character.  Otherwise I'm thrilled for the new release and since the author is helping write the screenplay it should be good...after all her other works are.

sue on Jul 11, 2011


JJ Field is in Northanger Abbey I believe and does an incredible performance. yeah

sue on Jul 11, 2011


I have not read this one, but I love Shannon Hale's other works. I hope this leads to an adaptation of The Goose Girl series.

Guest on Apr 23, 2012

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