25.3.13

Coming Soon: "Harry Potter, the BBC Mini-Series"?


Da-da worked a lot in the late '90s, and wrote a lot into the '00s, and then Bronko and Nagurski came along and needless to say, Da-da lost a good decade-and-a-half in terms of popular culture and entertainment. Long-story-short, Da-da's only now reading the Harry Potter series, primarily because Nagurski is reading them, but we're both enjoying them, third-person violation notwithstanding. Da-da must thank Ms. Rowling for her work, as it's wonderful; he's also quite moved by her history. The first "Harry Potter" movie on the other hand...

We all know -- that's The Royal We -- that movies are rarely, if ever, as good as the book. Notable exceptions are, "The Shawshank Redemption," a short story by Sr. King, and "Bladerunner," based on, "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep" by Sr. Dick. Da-da's certainly not here to bitch, not entirely, but he is here to give people ideas.

Fact is, like most books, "Harry Potter," the movie is not as good as, Harry Potter, the book. (Da-da's only seen the first movie, as he's reading the books first; the audio books are first-rate, and are good for young readers listening and following the text.) The reasons for the film being less than spectacular are obvious: Producers had to cut portions, as lame modern audiences won't sit through a four-hour movie, but maybe they don't have to, not all at once. Wait for it...

[Before Da-da goes on, he'd like to say that he's a big fan of "Harry Potter" screenwriter Steven Kloves, who did, "Fabulous Baker Boys," one of Da-da's top three favorite movies, primarily because, as a recovering musician, Da-da lived it. Everyone in, and everything about, that movie is excellent.]

Bronko and Nagurski in the bathroom, c. 2037.

So, howbout, "Harry Potter: The BBC Mini-Series"? But with more character actors and detail. Just recast the whole enchilada and do the whole thing over again, with each season representing one year at Hogwarts, thus bringing back all the detail of the books, and giving a whole new S.L.E.W. of child actors a shot at greatness -- except this time don't make everyone so attractive. Harry should look... well, heartbroken, victimized: vulnerable (read: COMPLEX), like the book. Same with Dumbledore. Da-da likes Richard Harris, but... he's not Dumbledore. Anyway, dig into that rich and ostensibly bottomless British theatrical TRUNK and cast actors that are quirky, not handsome, as everyone's way too good-looking in the 2001 film.

Once upon a time, Da-da was producer of terrible exciting corporate videos, and in his first outing, he made the mistake of letting the director cast everyone.  It was awful. "Grandma" was this perfect "California grandma" archetype, the "kids" and "parents" way too perfect; even the dog was flawless. White teeth, perfect skin, smiley faces, and that was just THE DOG. You wanted to hit the entire smiley happy white people cast with a brick. No reasonable being would trust such a family. Potterwise, with perhaps the exceptions of Ron and Hermione and Prof. McGonagall, everyone is too good looking, especially the other robed kids walking Hogwarts' halls. Even Alan Rickman, who's excellent in everything he's in (Da-da can perpetually see him falling backwards in super-slo-mo off the Nakatomi Building), he still needed greased-down hair and paler make-up to make him look like Snape -- that is, horrid.

Bitch bitch bitch. Basically, there's room for a new BBC TV Mini-Series -- OR, if you must spend a metric tonne of money, an animated version. All Da-da asks for this idea are Hogwarts robes for Bronko and Nagurski. Aaand maybe a little writing or production job for Da-da. He's very responsible. AND housebroken!

[And for the record, Da-da cannot stand Professor Umbridge, having worked for too many of her before. Da-da's only on p. 325 of, Order of the Phoenix, but he can't wait to see what Ms. Rowling has in store for Umbridge's ultimate comeuppance.]

Who will be the new three? Man, talk about winning the child-actor lottery.

For J. K. Rowling: Hi, Ms. Rowling. Da-da thought you'd find this sooner or later. Wonderful work, btw. Da-da loves how you overcame adversity, a story in itself; it made Da-da go to a mainstream chain bookstore to purchase all your books in HB, at full price, something he rarely does, because he felt you deserved it. Anyway, Da-da thought he might be so presumptious as to also share a few sequel ideas, from one author to another -- which you'll no doubt toss out the window, but Da-da thought he'd offer them anyway. So. Harry Potter 8, or somesuch. You could do a prequel about the goblin wars from the 1600s (goblin magic is very interesting), using all the paintings in Hogwarts as tapestry, with some new young heroes who eventually found Hogwarts. Thought that might be fun. Or perhaps have Harry & co, say five years older, going on a long spooky mission where they learn some advanced magic, perhaps how to be an animagus, while dealing with a vampire/djinn invasion, while delving into the theory behind the magic itself (how it works, its Source, potential loss of all magic from the world, etc.). That's all for now. Da-da and his children thank you.  -Dd.

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