Photo: Anne Hathaway in “Becoming Jane”
〉The film will balance Austen’s life with scenes from her novels
Jane Austen fans rejoice, because Voltage Pictures is moving forward with a new romantic comedy based on the life of the prolific author. Titled JANE BY THE SEA, this witty comedy will explore the encounters and relationships that inspired characters and scenes from her iconic works. Austen’s story will be inter-cut with developing scenes from her in-progress novels as she writes them, to better dramatize what influenced them and how they came to be.
Babacar Diene will oversee for Voltage, while Lucy Mukerjee and Elizabeth Stanley will produce. Kelly Rogers of Rialto Distribution is also producing, along with James Brown of Neon Films in the UK. Carolyn Murray scripted the film, which will explore the evolution of Austen’s work, as well as the author herself. Murray also wrote the novel on which the pic is based, also titled Jane By The Sea, which serves as a semi-biographical look into the loves of the author’s life, and how those experiences shaped her writing.
Austen is a literary titan, whose literature has been frequently adapted throughout film, television, and other art. With renowned classics such as Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, and Emma, Austen’s became a household name and a Hollywood staple.
Works such as Bridget Jones Diary, Austenland, and Clueless are just but a few that take inspiration from Austen’s novels. A very loose adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, this time titled Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and featuring ravenous hordes of the undead, will hit theaters next February.
Anne Hathaway most recently portrayed Austen in the biopic Becoming Jane, which, much like Jane By The Sea, also centered on her development as an author. Unlike that film however, Jane By The Sea will jump between Austen’s world and the world of her stories, presenting a new spin on the biopic formula.
Voltage distributes a number of independent and art house films, in addition to producing a steady crop of new releases. Voltage most recently picked up Charles Bukowski’s semi-autobiographical novel Women.
Murray, a self-titled Austen enthusiast, is a Walt Disney Writing Fellow and screenwriter who has had multiple projects optioned. Jane By The Sea is her first novel, which was published via Sandcastle Press this past July.
Clark Allen | Associate Editor