‘The Promise’, a book written by our Artviva Festival presenter, and Tuscan local, Lisa Clifford, is being made into a feature-length film. We have just received the following information from the film Producer Stuart Scowcroft on the process of transforming a wonderful book into a fabulous film. Here is what he has to say:
One of the biggest challenges when adapting a book to the big screen is how difficult it is to show viewers the internal thoughts of a character. In film you have to show rather than tell. In a book each reader brings his or her own experience to the page but that is not really available to them in a movie.
Lots of the key elements of The Promise the book remain in the screenplay. The Gruppo Fist, the bikes, the cultural clash, the loneliness and the fun, the Calcio Storico, the passion that demands that Lisa stays and the need for identity that demands that she goes. Dinner with the friends, The Red Garter, karaoke etc. It will all be there but now we are weaving the events into the journey of a character on the screen. The audience will be able to share the journey. It is, in many ways, a question of simplification because the internal struggle is difficult to portray. Where Lisa in the book can tell us how she feels, Lisa in the film must be seen to experience the emotion. Paolo is developing very well. Lisa Clifford once said to me that one of the great things that appealed to her about Paolo was that he looked after her?.cared for her in a way that Australian men do not. For me that was a very valuable insight and has helped a lot in developing his screen persona.
We have given Lisa the driving goal of wanting to be a journalist from the outset so that there is a driving question. And falling in love is a problem because it could get in the way of her journalistic ambitions. And it is not so good for Paolo either because it could get in the way of his racing ambitions.
I think we would have a very good script. We have done a lot to show the audience what I perceive as a strong and loving relationship between Gemma and Giovanni. And, I must confess, we have taken June on a journey that leads her to contribute positively to Lisa’s life in the end. Geppa works very well as Paolo’s off-sider. The characters in general are concrete and well-formed.