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Turning classics into film

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Following the success of the legend-based Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Hollywood again seems ready to tackle the classics. The current trend on the big-screen agenda is turning serious literature into film, as several innovative directors take a fresh look at some of the oldest stories in the book:

Madame Bovary
Isabelle Huppert stars as Flaubert’s unhappy homemaker in this new screen version from director Claude Chabrol. (Christmas)

Where Angels Fear to Tread
Charles Sturridge directs E.M. Forster’s 1905 story of a young British widow (Helen Mirren) traveling in Tuscany, who impulsively marries an Italian youth, setting off a chain of tragicomic events. (February 1992)

Howards End
Also based on a Forster novel, the James Ivory film features Anthony Hopkins and Vanessa Redgrave. But the real star is Howards End, the manse that becomes the center of conflict in this story about relatives and their real estate. (April 1992)

The Last of the Mohicans
Taken from the pages of James Fenimore Cooper’s 1826 novel, Mohicans stars Daniel Day-Lewis as the frontiersman raised by Mohican Indians who falls in love with a British officer’s daughter (Madeleine Stowe). Michael Mann directs. (summer, 1992)

Dracula: The Untold Story
Francis Ford Coppola will inject new blood into Bram Stoker’s 1897 tale, with Winona Ryder as the succulent Mina, and Anthony Hopkins in the role of Van Helsing. Rumor has it Gary Oldman will play the Count. (In preproduction)

Wuthering Heights
Emily Brontë’s 1847 tale of domestic hell on the heath is being redone by director Peter Kosminsky. Word is singer Sinéad O’Connor will lend her Irish brogue as narrator Brontë. (In preproduction)

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