Welcome back to my bookshelf!
I’ve got a bit of a weird one today: the novelization of the film 10 Things I Hate About You. It’s really the only book like this I have, and I inherited it from my sister. I think she got it in high school.
There are two reasons I decided to keep this book, because it’s not like it’s a great work of literature.
The first reason is that my good friend, E. M. McBride and I used Heath Ledger (God rest his soul) from this film as the physical template for one of our characters in “Maybe I Know.” Not just the looks, but the clothing, the attitude, the way people saw his character before and after the character has really made his stamp on the story.
The other reason is that the Shakespeare play this was based on, The Taming of the Shrew, is basically one of the best things ever, and I’ve yet to come across a version of it that wasn’t fabulous. I’ve got the Elizabeth Taylor film version, and I’m itching to get my hands on a good copy of My Fair Lady and a copy of the actually film, 10 Things I Hate About You for the complete set.
As far as modernizing Shakespeare is concerned, this is head and shoulders above the Amanda Bynes film based on Twelfth Night (The title of which is escaping me… She’s the Man? Something like that). That was a good enough film, but it was kind of a one-man show as far as casting was concerned. Heath did a much better job than Channing Tatum, and while Amanda Bynes was a comedic natural, Julia Styles just sort of nails the “shrew” role. Also, I just felt like the story for The Taming of the Shrew was not only the more believable story, but infinitely the more adaptable story, especially for the high school scene. It was always going to be the better material to work with.
I have to say that Heath and Julia were one of the best teen rom com pairings that ever happened, and I’m kind of tearing up writing this right now, but isn’t it awful to think it’ll never happen again, those two in a movie? Any movie? I mostly have the book just to look at the cover sometimes and think of how perfect that duo was together.
K. I’m going to find my mysteriously missing tissue box now.