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May 23, 2011


Casting the Carrie remake

Sissy Spacek as Carrie

We heard last week that Stephen King's classic adolescent horror revenge-fantasy Carrie is going to be adapted into another movie, and is supposed to be more faithful to the book than the 1976 Brian De Palma movie that made a star of Sissy Spacek and filled millions of pre-teen girls with abject terror about getting their periods.

Carrie is one of the few Stephen King books that I somehow didn't get around to reading during those heady days of 1989-90 when I went King-crazy and read everything the library had, even The Tommyknockers, which now that I think about it, had to be some kind of joke, right? Anyway, I don't know exactly what elements from the De Palma movie won't make it into the remake, but I'm guessing most of the big ones will still be there: Carrie's social reject status at school, her religiously oppressive and terrifying mom, the pig's blood at the prom, and the explosive and fiery demise that her telekinetic powers wreak on all those bastards. Probably, as The AV Club predicts, in 3D.

But the obvious question is: who's gonna play Carrie? Sissy Spacek was so great--even though she was 26 when the movie came out, she's still believable as a shy outcast who doesn't understand what's happening to her body, why the other kids are so mean to her, or the secret powers she has.

Stephen King has suggested one name only: Lindsay Lohan. Maybe he was kidding. Considering that at age 26, Lindsay Lohan already looks older than Sissy Spacek does today, I don't think she can pull off a role as a high school student anymore. Or a college student role, unless it's in a kooky comedy about a broken-down old hag attending college as a non-traditional student, sort of like Rodney Dangerfield in Back to School.

A few other ideas:

Carey Mulligan. She's 26, but was great at playing a naive kid in over her head in An Education, and I'd love to see her branch out into horror. Or, oh oh, yes: Dakota Fanning! She's already done more interesting, dark roles than most middle-aged actresses (child rape in Hounddog, drugs, addiction, nervous breakdown, and hooking up with Joan Jett in The Runaways) and can apparently do anything. She doesn't exactly look like most high school social rejects, but Hollywood loves to make beautiful women ugly for the tough roles. She's the baby-faced psycho I'd love to see.

Or maybe Emma Watson can break out of the Hermione cage by laying utter waste to prom.

And what about Carrie's mom? Piper Laurie in the original is probably the scariest crazy-eyed movie mom I've ever seen. For the remake, I can see Amy Ryan pulling some seriously twisted psycho-fundamentalist shit on her daughter. Or maybe Olivia Williams, who always seemed so gentle until we saw her all pissed off and bitter and possibly murderous in The Ghost Writer last year.

There's no director yet, but maybe Catherine Hardwicke can redeem herself and do something good again. I hear Red Riding Hood was a bust.

categories: Celebrities, Movies
posted by amy at 3:21 PM | #

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Spacek is indeed perfect perfect perfect---one of those casting moments that's unreproducable. And I'll bet the remake won't have my favorite line, which I've always wanted to believe was introduced by Travolta, from when the boys go to the farmyard in preparation for the prom: "C'mere little piggy, one smack and you won't have to worry about the bomb no more." Then again, it might not have that dumbass slow-motion shower intro, because few directors have DePalma's knack for making good movies stupid.

Posted by: That Fuzzy Bastard at May 24, 2011 12:34 AM

Ha! I always forget that Travolta is even in that movie. It's so hard to separate young Travolta from Vinnie Barbarino and Tony Manero. Though he does sport the most luxurious hairstyle in Carrie.


De Palma really is a master of spectacularly blowing it with otherwise good movies. I hold him responsible for Al Pacino's nearly uninterrupted downward trajectory since Scarface.

Posted by: amy at May 25, 2011 3:45 PM

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