Coraline Q&A with Neil Gaiman

February 15, 2009 at 11:50 pm (Film) (, , , , , , )

I went to see Coraline at the Dublin Film Festival this evening. It wasn’t advertised but following the film there was a Q&A with Neil Gaiman which was delightful. Mr Gaiman give every impression that he is generally the lovely soul you’d hope from reading his books.

The highlights for me were his telling of the nightmare that was attempting to get Good Omens made back in the very early 90’s. It would seem that some of the executives involved thought that Tom Cruise would be a good pick for Newt. So it not getting made is not all bad. He said that getting burned with that set him up for some of the better collaborations he’s now managed to make happen. 

Also he told us of the Gilliam nightmare that went down when it came to a different (I think) version of the same. Gilliam nearly had the money together went to the US looking for a paltry $15 million and a distribution deal from one of the studios was resoundingly ignored and then the English company putting up the rest went bankrupt. All he needs is $75 million or so and he could do it, so if you’ve got it spare send it to Gilliam because I would love to see his Good Omens. I am almost certain that it would be utter genius. 

Gamian spoke of the origins of Henry Selick’s involvement in Coraline and it would seem that he sent Selick the first draft (minus one chapter) and within a couple of weeks Selick was back to him and shortly there after on board. Gaiman it seems was taken with Nightmare Before Christmas and James and the Giant Peach so persued Selick from the start. It has taken 8 years to get the project to screen and I assure you it was worth the wait, the 3D is used in a really interesting and different fashion but I’m still not 100% sold on it as a storytelling device. 

Neil Jordan was present in the audience as he is undertaking the adaptation of the Graveyard Book. News which had managed to pass me by but which I am pretty glad about. This after all is the man who managed to adapt The Butcher Boy. He spoke briefly about his impression of the 3D and his excitement about the project. 

Finally he discussed some of the intricies of the technology and a bit about Stardust (I have my doubts about how happy he is with the final product). It was interesting and a highlight of my year so far. 

Disclaimer: These are my general ramblings about the discussion if I mis-heard or got the wrong impression apologies contact me and I’ll change it. Thanks.

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