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Jane Eyre, Superstar: From Brontë to Fukunaga

Posted February 17, 2011 to photo album "Jane Eyre, Superstar: From Brontë to Fukunaga"

Since Charlotte Brontë brought her heroine to life in 1847, everyone––filmmakers, artists, playwrights, cartoonists––have wanted to recreate her in their own imagination.

Jane: For the 21st Century
Jane as Orphan
Jane: A Story for Every Generation
Jane: The Passion of the Fans
Jane: A Proto Marxist?
Jane: On the Stage
Jane: A Poor Person's Passion
Jane: A Working-Class Hero
Jane: A Drawing Room Romance
Jane: The Matinee Idol
Jane: A Horror Drama
Jane: Strong, But Reserved
Jane: A Thoroughly Modern Heroine
Jane: Without Jane
Jane: A Zombie Jane
Jane: A Graphic Approach
Jane: A Comical Turn
Jane: A Teen Dream
Jane: For Every Artist
Jane: For Every Imagination
Jane: Stamps of Approval
Jane: Everlasting
Jane: Strong, But Reserved

Jane: Strong, But Reserved

Joan Craft’s Jane Eyre (1973), Sorcha Cusack and Michael Jayston

Jane Eyre’s fervent fans appear to like the 1973 version for its fidelity to the original novel. Of course, as a BBC miniseries it could at 275 minutes go further than your average 90 minute film. (This would be the second of four BBC adaptations of the novel.) The New York Times’ Richard F. Shepard wrote, "As its heroine, Sorcha Cusack makes an uncommonly strong, yet reserved, Jane. She is not pretty but has a quiet beauty enhanced by a slight smile and an expression that is attractively quizzical.” Playwright Robin Chapman, who penned this version, wanted to focus on the inner Jane: “usually when people dramatize Jane Eyre they take away the narrative voice-over of Jane herself and this turns the book on its head.” Jane story is about her self-realization, since for Chapman, “I think Charlotte Bronte was an early feminist.”