Lemony Snicket: the movie

A film based on Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, a series much beloved by my stepdaughter, is in post-production and will be released later this year, around the holidays. I doubt I’ll see it because Jim Carrey is cast as Count Olaf and his prior portrayals of beloved children’s villains induced spontaneous and copious vomiting. My fellow moviegoers weren’t amused. In other casting news, Meryl Streep will play Aunt Josephine and Jude Law does the voice for Lemony Snicket. (Via whatevs.)

According to an old San Francisco Chronicle article, Lemony Snicket author Daniel Handler “was involved in an early screenplay, but the final script — based on the first three books — was written by Hollywood veteran Robert Gordon (“Men in Black II”).” Here’s an excerpt from the Chronicle‘s interview with Handler:

“Now I’m involved in a more honorary capacity,” Handler said, wryly. “That’s when it really got exciting. At long last, the film moved out of the stage where it was just a few people sitting in a room talking, and now there are whole rooms full of people building things and making models.”

Faxes of costume designs and board-game covers come in daily to the Handler/Brown home in the upper Haight: “I spend many hours going over pop minutiae in Snicketland,” he admitted. “It feels bizarre that there are people in Los Angeles taking very seriously detailed descriptions of Snicket characters.”

When the film folks first talked about manufacturing toys, Handler was nonplussed.

“My reaction was, ‘Of course not!’ I’m a serious writer, and until they come out with Philip Roth action figures, there should be no Lemony Snicket action figures.”

He capitulated only when he recalled his own obsession with “Star Wars” figures. “I remembered that for hours and hours and hours I would be acting out stories with my friends and with my sister, using pieces from our five favorite movies and two books — or something on TV plus ‘Mary Poppins.’


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