Why has it taken so long to get Carol made?

November 23, 2015

 

In an interview with Slate, screenwriter, Phyllis Nagy detailed the saga of adapting her friend, Patricia Highsmith’s novel, The Price of Salt to the big screen. To be exact, it’s taken about 19 years (can you believe I still want to be a producer?).

 

Long story short: Lesbians are cool, we’re just not sure about having two female leads.

 

Nagy said, “That it was a lesbian love story was actually cool with [the investors]. It was around the time of movies like Bound, you know, ‘hot lezzies in wet T-shirts.’ It was in vogue! Having two women leads was the issue.”

 

Years later, even with an Oscar-winning actress and nominated director, distributors still weren’t convinced that a female-led film would make money.

 

Producer, Elizabeth Karlsen said, “They look at [the box office of] other similar films and that’s always a problem.” Their saving grace was that Cate Blanchett’s movie Blue Jasmine had done well.

 

Um, didn’t The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 just make $101 million this weekend? Even its lowest performing movie in the franchise has slayed the competition, making even more money than Spectre. Female-led movies have been raking in money for years, like Sex and the City, The Heat, Gravity, Twilight and Alien, to name a few. This fallacy that people don’t want to watch a movie starring a woman is stupid.

 

Another favorite quote: When people would suggest to Nagy that Carol or Therese should feel guilty about being gay, and “suffer a breakdown scene about it”, she’d say “Have you ever had a breakdown about being straight?”

 

Since coming out on Friday, Carol has gotten rave reviews with a 94% score on Rotten Tomatoes. I can’t wait to watch it. The book was amazing (which I finished while I was camping out for the Balmain x H&M collection, more on that later), and you can feel the yearning and loneliness on every page. I’m pretty sure this movie is going to destroy me.

 

 

Photo: The Weinstein Company

 

 

 

 

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