Although I’ve lived in Utah most of my life, I didn’t attend a Sundance Film Festival screening until a few years ago. I loved the experience so much that I haven’t missed seeing at least one film each festival since. This year I was lucky enough to get a ticket to the last screening of the film adaptation of Shannon Hale‘s adult novel, Austenland. I didn’t read any early reviews so I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I loved it! From what I remember of the novel the film takes itself much less seriously. As Becky (@mjmbecky) and I agreed on Twitter, adapting it as a rom com with emphasis on the com rather than the rom was a smart move. Director Jerusha Hess (Napoleon Dynamite, Nacho Libre) is correct in claiming two audiences for the film, which is for both “Jane Austen fans and people who find Jane Austen fans funny.” That said the film is over-the-top at times, particularly Jane’s character, whose Austen obsession borders on being unrealistic, not to mention some of the supporting characters being one-note. Silliness aside, the film is hilarious – you’ll laugh until your cheeks hurt. I’m very excited to see it again with everyone else when it comes to theaters at the end of the summer. In the meantime here are two teaser clips to whet your appetite:
There’s also a video of the Q&A with Jerusha Hess, Stephenie Meyer (producer), Shannon Hale, and the cast after the first screening, which is worth watching. There is no trailer yet but as soon as there is you’ll find it here. For now, enjoy!