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 Post subject: Birkin comment on Depp
PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2005 11:36 pm 

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Here is the reply Andrew Birkin gave on January 12 to someone who asked him on his site whether he liked FN:

Quote:
I'm sorry to say that I've never seen the movie. I read the script some years ago, and found the character of "Barrie" to be so far removed from the real JMB as to be unrecognisable. This is not a value judgement - I'm a great admirer of Johnny Depp, and his performance may well be remarkable, but from everything I've read and heard, he doesn't sound much like the JMB I have come to know, either in looks, spirit, or his sense of deadpan humour. What do you think?


I don't think I've ever seen a direct and so complimentary comment about Johnny before from him--or has this already been posted? (I'm a bit out of the loop since I haven't had time to keep up with Invalids)


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 12:53 am 
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srt, thank you for posting that! I think a few of us had a hard time with parts of the movie initially just because of the historical inaccuracies we recognized after our discussion of Mr. Birkin's book. If we felt that way, I can certainly understand why he would after devoting so much time and energy into preserving Barrie's legacy. I am very glad to see his kind words in regards to Johnny but I do have to disagree on one point. Although Johnny did not in any way resemble the real J.M. Barrie (see picture below), I felt he did capture his spirit (at least as I came to understand it) and I thought the deadpan humor was right on. :cool: Here is his response to our ONBC question regarding Finding Neverland:

With the movie “Finding Neverland” set to open this fall, do you have any thoughts on how JMB will be portrayed? Given the obvious physical differences between the lead actor Johnny Depp and the real JMB, how do feel about the choice of actor to portray Barrie?

AB: I read the script which I thought pretty ghastly, but then I would, wouldn’t I?! Haven’t seen the film, and have no real desire to, but I wish them luck.

Image



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 1:15 am 

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Hi DITHOT! That final question in Birkin's answer--he seemed to be soliciting further opinions from Barrie fans who had seen the movie. I may put in my two cents, but I'm sort of in awe of Mr. Birkin and don't want to sound like a dipshite!
You can check out his discussion board for the posting.

I didn't expect the film to accurately replicate the Barrie I met in Birkin's book, so I had no problem when it didn't. But I agree with you that Johnny and the movie really captured very well some elements of the spirit of Barrie and Peter Pan. What really struck me was how well the film captured Barrie's infatuation with the children; I love that scene in which he just bubbles over at dinner, telling his wife about meeting the boys in the park. Also, I think Depp captures so well Barrie's wistfulness and longing to be more connected with the boys--the sensibility we find in "The Little White Bird." And the enthusiasm and creativity Barrie brings to playing with the boys matched what I saw in The Lost Boys. I also thought the film was dead-on in recognizing that Peter Pan is largely about death and loss. I find myself really wanting Andrew Birkin to go see the film and find that he likes it!


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 1:35 am 
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Thanks, SRT, for sharing this tidbit. I hadn't seen that anywhere. I can understand somewhat where Birkin is coming from with all of the research he's done on Barrie, sweat and tears and all. I felt let down initially by the movie, which I expressed here on the board. Having spent a whole month discussing Barrie, after reading the book, making up questions, doing research on him and everything related to him, I had invested much of myself too. But it was the historical inaccuracies that bothered me, not Johnny's portrayal of him. I think Johnny did an excellent job of portraying him, considering the historical inaccuracies (BTW not as many as I initially thought) and his appearance. One thing that came through loud and clear for me the first time I saw it was that Johnny was the best actor for the job. Birkin can't say that because he actually hasn't seen it. I think maybe he needs to go take a look and make his own judgement instead of taking the words of others. And he should probably see it twice, like I did. I know I'm being harsh, but that's just my opinion. OK. Off my :soapbox:

And SRT, I just read your answer to DITHOT. (I've spent a lot of time trying to get this post out, lol) I really want Birkin to see it too. And I agree with you on this: "I also thought the film was dead-on in recognizing that Peter Pan is largely about death and loss." I also felt that Barrie was Peter Pan, which for some reason I missed the first time I saw the movie. I think it is the overall message of the movie that is so true and that I think Birkin would agree with.



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 3:46 am 
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I never read/reply in the ONBC but I had to comment about that. :blush:

His comment about the movie really is direct and he sounds like an interesting man. I have no idea who he is but I've heard the Zone got to contact him or something like that. Sorry if I'm wrong, I'm not sure! :$

Anyways, thanks. It was nice to read and see a different [and so direct!] comment from a person. :-)


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 11:49 am 
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Quote:
Vivi Sparrow wrote: His comment about the movie really is direct and he sounds like an interesting man. I have no idea who he is but I've heard the Zone got to contact him or something like that. Sorry if I'm wrong, I'm not sure!


Andrew Birkin wrote J. M. Barrie and The Lost Boys which is a biography of Barrie. Birkin is quite a scholar on Barrie and he maintains a wonderful website dedicated to him. http://www.jmbarrie.co.uk He was kind enough to answer questions submitted by our readers dealing with Barrie's life. If anyone is interested in reading the questions and answers they are located on the ONBC archive board on page 4. Just look for the topic "Q & A With Andrew Birkin ~ Printable Version".



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Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -
Wow! What a ride!
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2005 1:17 pm 
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DeppInTheHeartOfTexas wrote:
Quote:
Vivi Sparrow wrote: His comment about the movie really is direct and he sounds like an interesting man. I have no idea who he is but I've heard the Zone got to contact him or something like that. Sorry if I'm wrong, I'm not sure!


Andrew Birkin wrote J. M. Barrie and The Lost Boys which is a biography of Barrie. Birkin is quite a scholar on Barrie and he maintains a wonderful website dedicated to him. http://www.jmbarrie.co.uk He was kind enough to answer questions submitted by our readers dealing with Barrie's life. If anyone is interested in reading the questions and answers they are located on the ONBC archive board on page 4. Just look for the topic "Q & A With Andrew Birkin ~ Printable Version".


Thanks for the info :]


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2005 7:30 pm 
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I just came back from seeing Finding Neverland for the second time. So glad I made the 50 mile round trip to the theater that was still playing it.

Johnny is just so gorgeous in this movie! What I found on a second viewing was that he really displayed a gentle and kind manner. And after some of our discussions, I was really watching for things like the scene where he tells Sylvia about David's death.

The beginning of the movie says "inspired by true events." I, too, went to the movie the first time prepared to be upset by the way the truth was turned inside out in some many instances. But in the end, that "inspired" description is pretty accurate, and I do believe a great deal of the spirit was maintained.

I, too, hope Mr. Birkin watches Johnny's Barrie. Perhaps he would like it if he tried it.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2005 11:44 pm 

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In his latest response to someone on his board who recommended the film, posted yesterday, I believe, he said he was looking forward to acquiring the DVD--partly to see his segment in the extras. But, since he's in England, that will be soon, won't it?


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2005 11:51 pm 
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srt wrote: In his latest response to someone on his board who recommended the film, posted yesterday, I believe, he said he was looking forward to acquiring the DVD--partly to see his segment in the extras. But, since he's in England, that will be soon, won't it?

I know the dvd comes out here in March. I don't know about the UK, perhaps our UK posters can let us know? I will be very interested to read his comments once he has seen the film.



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Wow! What a ride!
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