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Popcorn & Prejudice: A Movie Blog

Seattle Times writer Moira Macdonald muses on moviegoing. Email Moira: mmacdonald@seattletimes.com.

November 30, 2012 at 10:18 AM

Carrie Underwood as Maria Von Trapp, and other news

Dear readers, it is not often that your P&P correspondent is gobsmacked (oh, I do like that word), but it happened this morning when I read the news that Carrie Underwood has been chosen to play Maria Von Trapp in an upcoming big-deal concert version of “The Sound of Music,” to be broadcast on NBC next year. Really? Isn’t it enough that Katharine McPhee is apparently still playing Marilyn on “Smash”? Is Ryan Seacrest handling all casting duties in Hollywood now? Is Keith Urban going to play the Captain? Why am I asking all these questions? (I must confess to a rather protective fondness of “The Sound of Music,” as it was my favorite movie when I was a kid and because I adore Julie Andrews. I do not want to hear “The Lonely Goatherd” with a country twang. We shall see.)
Sigh. In other news:
— BBC One has commissioned a six-part television series based on Susanna Clarke’s novel “Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell,” about a magician and his apprentice in England during the Napoleonic Wars. The bestselling book was optioned for the movies back in 2005, with Christopher Hampton signed to write the adaptation, but has never been filmed. I always meant to read it, but never did; will have to pick it up one of these days. Anyone a fan? It certainly sounds cinematic.
— Nick Hornby, author of many novels and the recent (fine) screenplay of “An Education,” has been signed to adapt Cheryl Strayed’s memoir “Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Coast Trail.” Reese Witherspoon’s production company has acquired rights to the book, and the actress will star in the film as a woman who faces grief by taking a 1,100 mile solo hike. (Wait a minute: when’s she going to make “Gone Girl”?) Hornby has also recently written the screenplay for “Brooklyn,” based on the novel by Colm Toibin and set to star Rooney Mara.
Happy weekend, all! (Carrie Underwood? Really? Clearly I need to get over this.)

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