From Page to Screen – books in the cinema

BRIDPORT’s unique literature and film festival, From Page to Screen, returns from 19th to 23rd April, with a compelling selection of film adaptations of books over the past half century, including some recent Oscar winners.

This year’s festival has been curated by Nick Marston, the chairman of the theatre, film and television department at Curtis Brown, one of the oldest literary agencies in Europe.

The programme as always is a mix of new and classic films including a number of special previews. Special guests will include some of the writers and novelists whose books inspired the films and the scriptwriters who adapted the words to the movies.

The new films this year include the Academy Award-winning Moonlight (the finale film on Sunday 23rd at Bridport Arts Centre), Lion, with Dev Patel and Nicole Kidman, at the Electric Palace at 5pm and The Sense of an Ending, adapted from Julian Barnes’ Man Booker Prize-winning novel, at 8pm, both on Friday 21st, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, examining the impact of the Iraq war on soldiers and the different perceptions of the American public, at the EP on Saturday 22nd at 8pm, and, also at the EP, on Thursday at 8pm,  a new take on a familiar character.

Lady Macbeth, directed by William Oldroyd, starring Florence Pugh, adapted from Alice Birch’s novel, is set in rural England in 1865. It tells the story of Katherine, a young woman stifled by a loveless marriage to a bitter man twice her age. After she embarks on a passionate affair with a young worker on her husband’s estate, a force is unleashed inside her so powerful that she will stop at nothing to get what she wants.

The classic movies are similarly wide-ranging and exciting including, on Wednesday,  In The Heat of the Night (1967), Gaslight 1940; Thursday, The Firemen’s Ball, 1967); Friday, Les Mepris, 1963, The Naked Civil Servant, 1975; Saturday, Night of the Iguana, 1964, The Incredible Journey, 1963, Saturday Night Fever, 1977; Sunday, Up The Junction, 1965 and The Knack … And How To Get It, 1965.

On Thursday 20th April, at Bridport Arts Centre at 2pm, Nick Marsden presents his Curators Favourite, Ernst Lubitsch’s great 1940 black and white drama, The Shop Around The Corner. James Stewart, an ambitious head clerk in Budapest’s Matuschek and Company, is drawn to a feisty new employee, Margaret Sullavan, but she spurns his advances in favour of a pen pal she has never actually met. Lubitsch expertly juggles comedy, heartbreak and near tragedy against a backdrop of pre-war Hungary at Christmastime. He said: “Never did I make a picture in which the atmosphere and the characters were truer.”

Full details of this fascinating festival are in the brochure, available at Bridport Arts Centre, and online at www.frompagetoscreen.org.uk

For tickets and info please visit www.bridport-arts.com or telephone 01308 424204

Pictured: From Page To Screen, The Shop Around The Corner (1940), Lady Macbeth (2017).