WAS YOUR FAVE BOOK ADAPTATION FILMED IN CANADA?
Hello! I hope everyone is having a fantastic Armchair BEA week. As you probably know, the mandate of the International Committee is to provide you with a bookish international perspective, specifically with regards to our home countries. Today I thought we could take a tour of all the beautiful provinces and territories in Canada by looking at book adaptations that were filmed here. Travelling from the east coast to the west coast, shall we begin?
PART ONE – ATLANTIC AND CENTRAL CANADA
Newfoundland and Labrador – The Shipping News by E. Annie Proulx (1993)
The Shipping News (2001) is based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. Kevin Spacey plays Quoyle, a down-on-his-luck father who moves to Newfoundland to start fresh. Newfoundland-loving Annie Proulx would only grant the film rights to the book on the condition the movie be filmed on the island.
The island of Newfoundland and mainland Labrador is located in Canada's Atlantic region. I had the pleasure of visiting the capital St. John's once and recall freezing my butt off even though it was the middle of summer. However, St. John's is a beautiful city, with charming streets of brightly painted "jelly bean" houses and amazing friendly people.
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Prince Edward Island – Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery (1908)
Anne was recently voted again as Canada's number one icon and Anne of Green Gables (1985) brought to life the red-haired girl for many fans and captured the hearts of those who weren't familiar with the book. Some scenes from the very popular movie were filmed in Prince Edward Island.
Another Atlantic province, no visit to gorgeous Prince Edward Island would be complete without a stop in the town of Cavendish where you can see all things Anne. I did manage to convince my husband (boyfriend at the time) to visit The Green Gables House, but we spent the rest of our visit at a pub watching the World Cup Soccer final match (sigh).
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Nova Scotia – Dolores Claiborne by Stephen King (1992)
A journalist played by Jennifer Jason Leigh arrives in a coastal Maine town to support her mother, Stephen King favourite Kathy Bates, a maid accused of killing her wealthy employer in this adaptation of Dolores Claiborne (1995). As another Atlantic province, Nova Scotia was perfect for filming the movie with its many picturesque towns and established ferry system.
Nova Scotia was one of my favourite places to visit because it's beautiful, full of history and just a very hospitable place. One of my favourite memories is rushing to catch the ferry between Digby and Maine. My boyfriend had just proposed to me at Peggy's Cove and we celebrated on the ferry by eating the best scallop burger I've ever had – yes, from the ferry café!
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New Brunswick – Children of a Lesser God by Mark Medoff (1980)
Marlee Matlin is a deaf woman who works as a cleaner at a school for the deaf who falls in love with the new speech teacher played by William Hurt. Children of a Lesser God (1996) was filmed in and around the city of Saint John, including a real elementary school.
We didn't visit Saint John during our time in New Brunswick, but we did visit some of the other must-do attractions of the province including Magnetic Hill in Moncton (a gravity hill that creates the illusion your car is being pulled along) and the phenomenal Bay of Fundy with its flower pot rocks.
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Quebec – The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks (1996)
The Notebook (2004) is considered one of the most romantic movies of all time and stars Canadians, Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams, as two teenagers in Charleston who meet one summer, decide that being together isn't possible, but can't stop loving each other. Several scenes from the movie were filmed in Montreal and just outside of the city.
The city of Montreal is the largest city of La belle province, Quebec, where the official language is French. I have always enjoyed Montreal's unique, vibrant culture that is a result of its deep historical and religious roots intermixed with the city's love of all forms of art, media and sports.
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Ontario – American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis (1991)
Christian Bale plays Patrick Bateman, an eighties-obsessed, wealthy investment banker turned serial killer, in American Psycho (2000). Scenes from the movie were filmed at various hotels, clubs, restaurant and neighbourhoods in Toronto.
Ontario is the largest province in Canada. I have lived in the Greater Toronto area for almost twenty years. I have not only walked the same streets as Patrick Bateman, but eaten and danced at the same venues (with different names), and even worked in the same building!
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Coming up tomorrow are the prairies, territories and west coast of Canada with book adaptations that include a Stephen King short story and a YA series that ignited the vampire phenomenon that continues today.
C.J. is from the Greater Toronto Area of Ontario, Canada. She has been blogging about classic books and literary fiction at www.ebookclassics.wordpress.
com for the past two years. Stop by to say hello or follow her on Twitter @ebookclassics where she tweets about books, film/TV adaptations and bookish life.