January 23, 2009

Inkheart on the Big Screen

Inkheart_poster_130Imagine if you had the power to make treasure fall from the sky, characters come out of books, and winged monkeys fly through the halls. What would you do? You would probably get grounded for the flying monkeys, but the other stuff sounds pretty cool, right?

These amazing things actually take place in the movie Inkheart. It is based on the first book in the best-selling Inkheart trilogy by Cornelia Funke and published by Scholastic Inc. The movie stars Brendan Fraser as Mo. Mo has the gift of bringing fictional characters into real life just by reading books aloud. But is it really a gift or is it a really big problem?

Recently, I had the great opportunity to hang out with the author, the actors, and the director to talk about the movie at the beautiful Casa Del Mar Hotel in Santa Monica, California. They were all thrilled that the film is coming out on January 23, and were eager to talk about it. They also shared with me some funny moments that happened on the set.

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Whenever Paul Bettany’s character, Dustfinger, appears in the movie, his ferret is always with him, perched on his shoulder. All the actors described the ferret as either wild or smelly. Bettany said a docile male ferret was used in one of the scenes in which they just wanted the ferret to sit on his shoulder. They also had a female “stunt” ferret for the action scenes.

“If they want the ferret to run up my leg, they put this little bit of food on my ear,” Bettany said. When the female ferret would run up his leg to go for the food, it wouldn’t know when to stop.” Then they’d pull it away and they’d put the male ferret on,” he added. Bettany said he was terrified of the crazy female ferret because it would nibble on his ear with its “sharp, pointy teeth.”

Because the movie is about bringing characters to life, I had to ask: “If you had the power to bring a character from a book to life, which one would it be?”

Cornelia Funke, the author of the Inkheart trilogy, Dragon Rider, and many other books, knew exactly which character she would bring to life. ”Dragon in Dragon Rider,” she exclaimed. “And then I would ride it. Yes! That would be the first thing I would do.”

Eliza Bennett plays Meggie in Inkheart. She said that she would bring to life Toto from The Wizard of Oz. The Toto character actually shows up in Inkheart.

When I asked Brendan Fraser about what book he would like to jump into, he said that one minor change in history could ruin the entire universe and life as we know it. And if he jumped into a book, he might cause bad things to happen.

“I think maybe I’ll just step into a phone book,” he said as he laughed heartily, “which is an excellent sleeping aid, I might add.”

The Inkheart novel is extremely imaginative and vivid. When you read it, you could see it as a movie in your head. So it was interesting to see how a movie was created from someone else’s point of view and what that looked like.

Iain Softley directed Inkheart. He said he tried to transport moviegoers into a new world and show them a whole new experience while they were watching the movie. As a viewer he said, “I want somebody to take me somewhere I’m not.”

He used that idea to help him make the movie a great adventure for people who watch it on the big screen.

— Mariam El Hasan, Scholastic News Kid Reporter

Movie poster courtesy of New Line Cinema. Photo courtesy of Mariam El Hasan.

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  1. Alyssa S

    I’ve read half of the book and saw the movie. GREAT!!!! I would love to read all of the book but I didn’t get around to it! I’ve been to busy!

    Reply
  2. aliciaurbestie

    y cant u c stuff in the thearter?? my parents dont care if i study they just want me 2 get like a b+ or better!!!

    Reply
  3. Chrisya

    WOW! The author’s ROCKING..! I can’t wait to see it. Actually, my mom ‘n dad aren’t aloud me to watch it in the movie theater! I’m so sad. They say that I must study, NOT watching films! It’s okay.., maybe I can watch it at home. It’s more cozzy u know! ~May God Bless U~ <- For the author and all of the guys here.

    Reply
  4. Johanna

    I absolutely love all your books!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m also trying to begin reading InkDeath! You know, there are just some books that people shouldn’t mess with!(movie-wise) I actually think that InkHeart is a pretty dangerous book to be messing with!(hint;hint: Twilight) Well, have a great day!!!

    Reply
  5. Johobo

    Loved the book, loved the movie! I got InkDeath for Christmas; can’t wait to read it! I didn’t think that the book InkHeart had a happy ending, but according to the movie it did! I didn’t know that Dustfinger had a wife!! Well, see ya!

    Reply
  6. coolio

    Yeah, ppl who said that the movie was very different from the book are correct although Inkheart was still a super awesome movie. Even my mom who has never read the book loves it.

    Reply
  7. coolio

    OMG i love the inheart trilogy and i have the whole set in hardcover. I also seen the movie and was super excited about the movie because it came out on my birthday so i got to see it. I wish i could meet the author becasue i am such a big fan and i have done a report on her. Also, i would be cool to meet the cast and get to meet the actor who played Dustfinger since he is my favorite character. GO BOOKS!!

    Reply
  8. cupcake_girl

    I really want to watch this movie! I am a big fan of the books and I really want to check this movie out. The book , Inkheart, was full of action and wouldn’t let you put it down. I hope they did a good job on the movie. By the way, I think they picked a good Mo. Brenden Fraiser does a wonderful job for movies full of action.

    Reply
  9. summergirl537

    i agree with comment#4 no movie is ever as great as reading the book….. plus reading is always more fun you could actually feel like you’re really there well anyway it was an awesome series i recommended it to some of my friends

    Reply
  10. I am Loved 101

    I have read the book and I saw the movie today. It was good but no where near as good as good as the book

    Reply
  11. jess

    i just saw inkheart today. it was absolutely amazing! by far, it was one of the best movies i’ve seen in my entire life! the only bad thing about it is that there are multiple differences from the book. it was still an amazing interpretation of my favorite book!!!

    Reply