• Bible Films Blog

    Looking at film interpretations of the stories in the Bible - past, present and future, as well as preparation for a future work on Straub/Huillet's Moses und Aron and a few bits and pieces on biblical studies.

    Matt Page


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    Tuesday, August 05, 2008

    MTV on Paradise Lost,

    The publicity machine for The Day the Earth Stood Still is starting to get up and running which gives director Scott Derrickson the chance to talk about his next project - an adaptation of Milton's Paradise Lost. Even so, the recent piece at the MTV Blog is surprisingly lengthy for a film that's not due out until 2009. The official site contains nothing more than an email address.

    I'd recommend reading the whole article, but here are a couple of choice quotes to whet the appetite.
    Imagine the most evil creature that ever existed, a villain who commits atrocity after atrocity, who has scarred the world and each and every creature in it, a scoundrel so heinous he makes Heath Ledger's anarchist Joker look like Mother Teresa. Now imagine that you like him.

    Director Scott Derrickson says that when you see his upcoming adaptation of "Paradise Lost," the epic 17th-century poem by John Milton about the Fall of Man, you won't be able to help but have sympathy for its bad guy: the devil.
    I've not read the original, but I don't think the director of The Exorcism of Emily Rose is meaning to be subversive here - he insists it's all in Milton's original work.
    In the movie, Satan goes from being a completely good being [an angel] to becoming the most heinous kind of evil, and you really have a hard time knowing exactly where he crossed that line because you were with him," the director said. "What is interesting about that story, in the way Milton laid it out, is that people jump off with him at different points and some never at all. Properly done, it's a story that tells readers a lot about themselves.

    "You have to respect that Milton created the first anti-hero with that poem, and certainly this was preserved in the script," Derrickson added. "At what point does love turn to jealousy, jealousy turn into hate and hate into evil?
    Thanks to Jeffrey Overstreet for highlighting the article.

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