Yet another adaptation of The Great Gatsby is now in development — this time, an animated feature. According to a report by Collider, writer Brian Selznick and director William Joyce are teaming up to bring the classic F. Scott Fitzgerald to live as a cartoon. The project joins another adaptation of the book already in development.
The creative team told Collider it will bring "new methodologies to its Gatsby remake, giving the outlet a sampling of some minimalist artwork. Joyce said: "Gatsby continues to cast a powerful spell over readers unlike any other book in American letters. Much of the power of Gatsby comes from the enchantment of Fitzgerald’s prose. He created a vivid dreamscape that, to some degree, has eluded filmmakers since the silent era. The previous film versions were constrained by live-action, but innovative animation could finally realize the elusive quality of the novel."
This production joins another adaptation of Gatsby from Vikings creator Michael Hirst, which will be done as a TV series. That one was announced by The Hollywood Reporter, who learned that Hirst is writing a miniseries and will executive produce it with Michael London. The twist is that their version will cast Black American actors in the main roles.
"I seem to have lived with Gatsby most of my life, reading it first as a schoolboy, later teaching it at Oxford in the 1970s then re-reading it periodically ever since," Hirst said of the project. "As the critic Lionel Trilling once wrote: 'The Great Gatsby is still as fresh as when it first appeared, it has even gained in weight and relevance.'"
"Today, as America seeks to reinvent itself once again, is the perfect moment to look with new eyes at this timeless story, to explore its famous and iconic characters through the modern lens of gender, race and sexual orientation," he went on. "Fitzgerald's profoundly romantic vision does not prevent him examining and exposing the darker underbelly of the American experience, which is why the story speaks to both tragedy and hope, and why it continues to resonate today."
Hirst is breaking new ground by taking the story to TV, though Joyce's version will be the fifth theatrical adaptation of Gatsby since its publication. The most recent starred Leonardo DiCaprion in 2013, and got generally mixed reviews.
Gatsby tells the story of a few Long Island socialites enjoying jazz, parties and sordid love affairs with one another. Fitzgerald did not live to see the book gain critical acclaim, as it was panned in its time. Today, it is taught in many high school and college courses, and is considered by some to be the definitive "Great American Novel." There are release dates in place for either of the new adaptations yet.