Saturday, July 5, 2008

a little holiday weekend recovery with the witches

This weekend involved a lot of driving, boating, brats and beer, which explains why I'm passing up a hotel party to spend Saturday night drinking boxed wine and watching The Witches on television. I need a break, and I'm happy to catch up on my rest with Anjelica Huston as the Grand High Witch. For the unfamiliar, The Witches is one of Roald Dahl's most successful children's novels, which was adapted into a fantastic family fantasy movie in 1990 (it was nominated for a BAFTA and a Hugo). Forget the drugstore Halloween costumes, Anjelica Huston is the original sexy witch, at least when she's wearing her mask, wig, gloves and shoes.

There have been loads of rumor that one of my favorite directors, Guillermo del Toro (Pan's Labyrinth, Hellboy and Hellboy II), will be remaking The Witches. The additional buzz has been that he's teaming up with fellow Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón for the project. This gives me hope that the Untitled Alfonso Cuarón Project on del Toro's IMDB profile for 2009 will in fact be this long-rumored collaboration. As excited as I am, I'm not completely sure who could top Angelica Huston as the Grand High Witch. After her icy performance as Mrs. Coulter in The Golden Compass, I'm sure Nicole Kidman would deliver, but I'm guessing the odds of that casting are pretty minuscule. When brainstorming about who could possibly play this role, my friend pointed out that there aren't really any current female celebrities who have the same strong look as Anjelica Huston. She's such a unique beauty, and in our current climate of self-tanned, hair-extensioned, rhinoplastied and botoxed actresses, it's going to be difficult to find an adequate successor. Helena Bonham Carter? Parker Posey? Mary Louise Parker? Monica Bellucci? And she may be 62, but Helen Mirren can still bring on the scary sex appeal. And perhaps Dame Judi Dench as Grandma?

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