Everything about Anne of Green Gables, eh?

Links: Anne of Green Gables on YTV

From Tony Wong of the Toronto Star:

He’s Martin of Green Gables
“This is an opportunity to become a part of a really great fictional character and to make a contribution to a new audience. Good things are worth repeating. That’s why you do Shakespeare or any of the great operas. It’s been done endlessly, but it awakens something in us that it awakened in earlier audiences.” Continue reading.

Anne of Green Gables ashtrays? Lucy Maud’s granddaughter has heard it all
“We had talked about it for some years and we started to talk about it again in 2008 and 2009. They hit the nail in the head with the casting. Martin Sheen and Sara Botsford are wonderful and so is Ella Ballentine. Ella is also younger than any other Annes that have been cast (14) and is closer to the age of Anne in the books. She is so smart and natural.” Continue reading.

From Melissa Girimonte of The Televixen:

Martin Sheen: Anne Reconnects us wth our humanity
“If Anne of Green Gables isn’t about humanity, I don’t know what it’s about. It’s about need. It’s about service. It’s reaching out and by doing so you help yourself. The only way I can get to know me is to know you. The only way I know I’m leading an honest or dishonest life is when it is reflected in you. And so we are called to remind each other how important it is to be human.” Continue reading. 


Link: Sara Botsford: Marilla for a New Generation in Anne of Green Gables

From Melissa Girimonte of The Televixen:

Sara Botsford: Marilla for a New Generation in Anne of Green Gables
“The style of this film is quite different. It’s much more realistic than idealistic, and it’s much more grounded. [Director] John Kent Harrison has a very clear idea. In his mind, the relationship for Marilla is with Matthew. It’s not with Anne. That’s a relationship that grows, but at the beginning of the film, it’s not about this orphan kid who showed up; it’s about Marilla’s brother and he’s not really going to do without this person to help us on the farm.” Continue reading.


Link: Martin Sheen reflects on his career and latest role in Anne of Green Gables

From Brad Wheeler of the Globe and Mail:

Martin Sheen reflects on his career and latest role in Anne of Green Gables
Martin Sheen is on the line, talking Bob Dylan, keeping it real and Anne of Green Gables, as one does. Sheen, who stars as Matthew Cuthbert in a new small-screen adaptation of the 1908 Canadian classic, wants to know how authentic the blue-screened snow looks in one of the winter scenes. “I haven’t seen the final version, with the special effects,” he says. Continue reading.


YTV’s Anne of Green Gables celebrates family

It’s been more than 100 years since Lucy Maud Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables was first published, and more than 30 since Kevin Sullivan’s CBC mini-series that so many of my generation fondly remember. So YTV is banking on an appetite for another television take on the red-headed orphan for a new generation and for us Anne-a-holics.

The script by Susan Coyne (Slings and Arrows), directed by John Kent Harrison (The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler), reorders events of the novel and, with Martin Sheen in the role, beefs up the presence of taciturn Matthew Cuthbert. The two-hour TV movie also necessarily truncates the action. Gilbert lovers, for example, shouldn’t get their hopes up. The focus here is on the making of a family, related not by blood but by unanticipated love.

Anne, for those who grew up in a cave, is the story of an imaginative, misadventure-prone orphan who arrives at Green Gables, where sister and brother Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert were expecting a boy to help them with the farm.

Ella Ballentine plays Anne Shirley and though her mother had read the book to her when she was much younger, she worked with director Harrison to give the character new life based on the script rather than the novel. “She falls out of the stereotype of so many girls on television,” said the 13-year-old, who sees a bit of herself in the character. “We’re both very chatty and independent we don’t let anyone tell us not to do something.”

“She’s incredibly positive about the world around her. I try to be positive, but she sees a gloomy place and turns it into a fantastical world.”

Ballentine sees relevance to the story today, despite the old-fashioned costumes and lack of modern conveniences. “For younger audiences it shows them the history of Canada, when it wasn’t all about phones and computers. And it shows that you can have a terrible past and still find the good in things.”

Sara Botsford sees Marilla Cuthbert as a woman protective of her beloved brother Matthew. “Marilla’s a very hard working person and has been all her life. She hasn’t exactly had a life full of romance and joy. But she has a big heart and she can’t see how this girl is going to help her brother with the farm.”

Her take on Anne is similar to Ballentine’s. “She’s determined to have a good life and a happy life. She’s looking for joy wherever she can find it. She’s not beaten down by circumstance, she’s courageous and determined.”

For some parts of the country, the movie is premiering on Family Day, which Botsford points out is perfect timing. “It’s about three people who create a family together. Definitions of family have changed over the years. Anne’s a child who needs parents and they’re older people who need love and warmth in their lives, so these people create their own family.”

Anne of Green Gables airs Monday, February 15, on YTV.


Link: New ‘Anne of Green Gables’ TV movie highlights female relationships

From Melanie Fishbane of Cinefilles:

New ‘Anne of Green Gables’ TV movie highlights female relationships
There are many opinions online about how Breakthrough Entertainment should have adapted Anne of Green Gables, L.M. Montgomery’s classic novel about how Anne Shirley, an orphaned girl sent to Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert by mistake, wins everyone over with her imagination, cleverness and intelligence. These opinions range from those who are so loyal to Kevin Sullivan’s 1985 miniseries starring Megan Follows, Colleen Dewhurst, Richard Farnsworth and Jonathan Crombie that they cannot imagine a world where any other adaptation might exist. Others, like myself, grew up as fans of the miniseries (and the first two movies—we don’t talk about The Continuing Story, nor A New Beginning) and are hoping that after thirty years there is finally a new (and good) interpretation of our favourite novel. Continue reading.