Rosaline, the Movie

Spotted on Twitter (thanks, elrankin!) is news of a Rosaline movie that will give us Romeo and Juliet from “Romeo’s ex-girlfriend’s point of view.” I won’t take issue with exactly what Romeo and Rosaline’s relationship was at the beginning of the play, I figure that’s close enough.
The article uses the example of Wicked as retelling Wizard of Oz. But what comes to my mind is Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead. There’s only one Tom Stoppard, certainly – but R&G has become one of the defining examples of how to take Shakespeare, turn him sideways, and create something awesome. Could this project do it again? Or is there just not enough meat on the bones of the Rosaline back story? The great thing about R&G is how Stoppard weaves the actual telling of Hamlet throughout – he makes it obvious that his story is taking place in between the scenes, when the action of the play has gone elsewhere. How will Rosaline make that work, when she’s basically gone after the Capulet party? Should we just stick her in every crowd scene? Add some previously unseen interactions between her and the main characters?

6 thoughts on “Rosaline, the Movie

  1. Wow, thanks for that detective work, Duane. Bleh, that sounds like a horrible book / movie!

    And I have to agree, I don't see how you build a POV for Rosaline, who's basically only mentioned in the very beginning. I could see doing R & J from Paris's viewpoint or one of the lower-level Capulets (or Montagues), but… not so much Rosaline. Though, having said that, I did just put the book CGriff mentioned on my to-read list.

  2. You know, actually, it is not. I guess this is popular fodder? The article (which you must not have read, for shame!! :)) says that this one is based on a book by Rebecca Serle.


    Oh, gods, is this it?

    "Rosie knows that she and Rob are destined to be together. They are best friends, next door neighbors, and the soon-to-be cutest couple in their senior class. Rosie has been waiting for years for Rob to kiss her–and when he finally does, it's perfect. But just before their relationship becomes completely official, Rosie's cousin Juliet moves back into town. Juliet, who used to be Rosie's best friend. Juliet, who now inexplicably hates her. Juliet, who is gorgeous, vindictive, and a little bit crazy…and who has set her sights on Rob. He doesn't even stand a chance.

    Rosie is devastated over losing Rob to Juliet. This is not how the story was supposed to go. And when rumors start swirling about Juliet's instability, her neediness, and her threats of suicide, Rosie starts to fear not only for Rob's heart, but also for his life. Because Shakespeare may have gotten the story wrong, but we all still know how it ends."

    Well, that just completely turned me off of this movie. Shakespeare got the story wrong. Check.

    Go read the one CGriff pointed to, it sounds much better.

  3. CGriff's example just goes ahead and builds a whole parallel story, with a romance between Rosaline and Benvolio. In another thread – about the werewolves – we're talking about exactly what it means to spin a story off of Shakespeare, if anybody wants to go join the conversation over there.

  4. I can't say I'm excited to see that movie.
    I never thought of Romeo and Rosaline having a close relationship. Actually, all I got was that Romeo was in love with her, and she didn't want him.
    I think this movie will be pretty lame, cause it's giving me chills just to think about it.
    Telling Rosaline story could be well done, if completely apart from the couple's plot. R&J could be told from Mercutio's point of view, for example. Or even the Friar Laurence PoV. It would be interesting.

  5. True – I did not click through to the Variety article…

    I shudder at the Serle novel description.I may have to down a few before reading that one… if I ever do.

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