The Outsiders: A Future Hit

         If I were to make a movie of a certain literary work, I would choose S. E. Hinton's The Outsiders. Hinton's novel has bold characters and an intriguing storyline.

         For the film, I would choose one set of tough-looking actors to represent the greasers and one set of preppy-looking actors to represent the rich kids. Marlon Brando, who plays Stanley in Elia Kazan's A Streetcar Named Desire, filmed in 1951 and based on Tennessee Williams' 1947 play, would be perfect as one of the greasers. While someone like Chris Klein could represent the preppy group, all members of the cast would have to match their characters' respective personalities and origins. For the greasers, each character would have to look tough and a little dirty to look genuine. For the rich group, the cast would have to look stuck up and well-dressed while putting on a façade.

         I would follow the storyline as closely as possible. The book is excellent, and I would hope to do it justice.

         A perfect setting for this film would be Los Angeles. L.A. is divided along class lines: there is a millionaires portion of the city, where the rich kids could be featured, and the inner city, where the greasers would be featured. There is one scene in the book that takes place in the country. A small town like Murray might actually fit that scene well.

         The costumes would be the easiest part of making this film. The greasers would wear loose clothing that looked unwashed. The rich group would wear brand name clothing with collared shirts and khaki pants; their clothes would be neatly pressed.

         After I had completed the film, it would be fun to recreate Henry James's 1898 The Turn of the Screw. This novella could be set in modern times and would make a thrilling horror movie. Technology today could make the movie look extremely realistic. If I recreated this film, I would also make the children look more suspicious than did Miles (Martin Stephens) and Flora (Pamela Franklin) in Jack Clayton's The Innocents, the 1961 film version of James's novella.

         Although The Turn of the Screw would make a great modern film, I would still be more interested in creating a film based on The Outsiders. Dramatic and suspenseful, I am sure this film would be a box office hit.

Jill Pierce

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