|Pride & Prejudice|
|Directed by||Joe Wright|
|Produced by||Tim Bevan
|Written by||Deborah Moggach (based on the novel by Jane Austen)|
|Music by||Dario Marianelli
(Piano performed by Jean-Yves Thibaudet)
|Editing by||Paul Tothill|
Working Title Films
|Distributed by||Focus Features|
|Release date(s)|| United Kingdom
September 16, 2005
November 23, 2005
February 23, 2006
|Running time||129 min.|
Pride & Prejudice is a 2005 film based on the Jane Austen novel of the same name. This second major motion-picture was produced by Working Title Films, directed by Joe Wright and based on a screenplay by Deborah Moggach. It was released on September 16, 2005 in the UK and on November 11, 2005 in the US.
The story takes place at the turn of the 18th century in rural England. The Bennet family, consisting of Mr. and Mrs. Bennet and their five daughters - Jane, Elizabeth (Lizzy), Mary, Catherine (Kitty), and Lydia - live in comparative financial independence as gentry on a working farm, Longbourn. As Longbourn is destined to be inherited by Mr. Bennet's cousin, Mr. Collins, Mrs. Bennet is anxious to marry off her five daughters before Mr. Bennet dies. However, Elizabeth, the heroine, is convinced that she should never marry unless she feels compelled to do so by true love.
Mr. Bingley, a wealthy bachelor who has recently moved into Netherfield, a large house in the neighborhood, is introduced to local society at an assembly ball, along with his haughty sister, Caroline, and reserved friend, Mr. Darcy, who "owns half of Derbyshire." Bingley is enchanted with the gentle and beautiful Jane, while Elizabeth takes an instant dislike to Darcy after he coldly rebuffs her attempts at conversation and she overhears him describe her as "not handsome enough to tempt me." When Jane becomes sick on a visit to Netherfield, Elizabeth goes to stay with her, and verbally spars with Caroline and Darcy.
Later the Bennets are visited by Mr. Collins, a pompous minister who talks of nothing but his patroness, Lady Catherine de Bourgh. Meanwhile, the handsome and charming Lieutenant Wickham of the newly-arrived militia captures the girls' attention; he slanders Darcy, telling Elizabeth that Darcy cheated him of his inheritance. At a ball at Netherfield, Elizabeth, startled by his abrupt appearance and request, accepts a dance with Mr. Darcy, but vows to her best friend Charlotte Lucas that she has "sworn to loathe him for all eternity." During the dance, she makes her disgust with him clear with biting sarcasm, and Darcy responds in kind. Their complete absorption with each other causes the other guests to 'disappear' for a time, until the music stops.
The next day, at Longbourn, Mr. Collins proposes to Elizabeth, much to her chagrin; she refuses him, which causes hysterics in her mother, but she has the support of her father. When Bingley unexpectedly returns to London, Elizabeth dispatches Jane to their aunt and uncle in London, the Gardiners, in hopes of re-establishing contact between Jane and Bingley. Now Elizabeth is appalled to learn that Charlotte will marry Mr. Collins, not because she loves him but entirely to gain financial security.
Months later, Elizabeth visits the Collinses at Rosings, the manor estate of the overbearing Lady Catherine; they are invited to dine at the grand house and there meet Darcy and Colonel Fitzwilliam, Lady Catherine's nephews. Here Darcy pursues a greater interest in Elizabeth, especially when she replies to Lady Catherine's jabs with spirited wit. The next day, Colonel Fitzwilliam lets slip to Elizabeth that Darcy separated Bingley from Jane. Distraught, she flees out into the rain; Darcy chooses that moment to track her down and to propose marriage — and thus follows the infamous 'train-wreck' marriage proposal. He claims that he loves her "most ardently," despite her 'lower rank.' Elizabeth refuses him, citing his treatment of Jane and Bingley, and of Wickham, and they argue fiercely. The scene provides a close-up of their faces, their minds intense with anger and indecision. Darcy leaves angry and heartbroken. He finds her later only to give her a letter, which explains that he misjudged Jane's affection for Bingley. The letter also exposes Wickham as a gambler who secretly but unsuccessfully courted Darcy's 15-year-old sister, Georgiana, to obtain her £30,000 inheritance.
Elizabeth does not tell Jane what she has learned. Later, the Gardiners take Elizabeth on a trip to the Peak District and visit Darcy's estate, Pemberley. Elizabeth is stunned by its wealth and beauty and hears nothing but good things about Darcy from his housekeeper. Then she accidentally runs into Darcy, who invites her and the Gardiners to meet his sister. His manners have softened considerably, and Georgiana takes an instant liking to Elizabeth. When Elizabeth learns that her immature and flirtatious youngest sister Lydia, who was sent on holiday unsupervised, has run away with Wickham, she tearfully blurts out the news to Darcy before returning home. Her family assumes their ruin for having a disgraced daughter, but they are soon relieved to hear that Mr. Gardiner has discovered the pair in London, and that they will be married. Lydia accidentally lets slip later that it was Mr Darcy who found them and who paid for the marriage.
When Bingley and Darcy return to Netherfield, Jane accepts Bingley's proposal of marriage. The same evening, Lady Catherine pays Elizabeth a surprise visit and insists that Elizabeth renounce Darcy, as he is supposedly going to marry her own daughter, Anne. Elizabeth refuses, and unable to sleep, she goes walking on the moors at dawn. There, she meets Darcy, who has also been unable to sleep after hearing of his aunt's behavior. He admits his continued love, and Elizabeth accepts his second proposal. Mr. Bennet gives his consent after Elizabeth assures him of her love for Darcy. In the U.S. version of the film, an additional last scene shows a newly-married Elizabeth and Darcy outside of their Pemberley estate showing affection for each other.
Co-producer Paul Webster had found the casting of Darcy difficult because of the character's iconic status and because "Colin Firth cast a very long shadow" as the Darcy from the 1995 television adaptation.
Most works of literature undergo significant cuts when adapted for film; in this production, the story was compressed into 2 hours and 9 minutes of screen time. Some of the most notable changes from the original book include:
The filmmakers changed several scenes to more romantic locales than the ones in the book. For instance, in the film, Darcy first proposes outdoors in a rainstorm near a beautiful lake; in the book, this scene takes place inside a parsonage. In the film, his second proposal occurs on the misty moors as dawn breaks; in the book, he and Elizabeth are walking down a country lane in broad daylight.
The American release version included a final scene (not in the novel) of the married Darcys enjoying a romantic evening at Pemberley. This ending did not test well with British audiences, so it was cut for UK and international release. The British version ends with Mr. Bennet's blessing upon Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy's union, thus circumventing the last chapter in the novel, which summarizes the lives of the Darcys and the other main characters over the next several years.
It was filmed entirely on location within England in the summer of 2004 and used several stately homes, including Chatsworth House in Derbyshire and Wilton House in Salisbury (as Pemberley), Groombridge Place in Kent (as Longbourn), Basildon Park in Berkshire (as Netherfield Park) and Burghley House in Cambridgeshire (as Rosings - the adjacent town of Stamford served as Meryton). The Temple of Apollo and Palladian Bridge of Stourhead also appeared (as set in the Gardens of Rosings).
The 2005 film was only the second faithful film version after "the famed, but oddly flawed, black-and-white 1940 adaptation, starring Greer Garson and Laurence Olivier", and until 2005, The Times considered the 1995 television adaptation starring Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth "so dominant, so universally adored, [that] it has lingered in the public consciousness as a cinematic standard." Comparing six major adaptations of Pride and Prejudice in 2005, the Daily Mirror gave the only top marks of 9/10 to the 1995 serial and the 2005 film, leaving the other adaptations behind with six and fewer points. The 2005 film is rated 85% fresh by Rotten Tomatoes. Metacritic reported Pride & Prejudice had an average score of 85 out of 100, based on 37 reviews, and classified the film as a universal acclaim.
Some critics noted the 2005 film's time constraints do not capture the depth and complexity of the television serials and called the film "obviously [not as] daring or revisionist" as the 1995 TV serial. Joan Klingel Ray, president of the Jane Austen Society of North America, preferred the young age of Knightley and Macfadyen, saying that Jennifer Ehle had formerly been "a little too 'heavy' for the role," while Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian, while heavily praising Keira Knightley for having given an outstanding performance as Lizzy Bennet "which lifts the whole movie," considered the casting of the 2005 leads "arguably a little more callow than Firth and Ehle." He does add that "Only a snob, a curmudgeon, or someone with necrophiliac loyalty to the 1995 BBC version with Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle could fail to enjoy her performance." Critics were divided about Matthew Macfadyen's portrayal of Darcy, expressing pleasant surprise, dislike for his lack of gradual emotional shift as in the novel, and praise for his matching the insecure and sensitive personality of the book character better than Firth.
The movie took the number one spot in the UK its first week, earning £2.5 million ($4.5 million) while playing on 400 screens. It stayed on the top spot for two more weeks, earning a total of over £14 million at the UK box office at that time and was featured on 1,335 screens at its widest domestic release.
The film debuted with an opening weekend of US$2.9 million on 215 screens. Two weeks later, this was increased to 1,299 screens, and box office returns increased to $7.2 million. The film has grossed over $121,147,947 worldwide at the cinema box office.
The standard DVD was released for home use on February 28, 2006 in widescreen and fullframe.
The deluxe edition includes both widescreen and fullframe, the original soundtrack CD, collectible book, collectible booklet, and 9-dual layer.
Pride & Prejudice garnered a number of nominations in the 2005/2006 film awards season, notably four nominations in the Academy Awards: Best Actress in a Leading Role for Keira Knightley, Achievement in Art Direction, Achievement in Costume Design for Jacqueline Durran, and Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Score) for Dario Marianelli's score. It was nominated for five BAFTAs and won the BAFTA Carl Foreman Award for Most Promising Newcomer (for Joe Wright, director).
|Awards ceremony||Award Category||Subject||Result|
|Academy Awards||Academy Award for Best Actress||Keira Knightley||Nominated|
|Academy Award for Best Original Score||Dario Marianelli||Nominated|
|Academy Award for Best Art Direction||-||Nominated|
|Academy Award for Best Costume Design||Jacqueline Durran||Nominated|
|Golden Globes||Golden Globe for Best Film - Musical or Comedy||-||Nominated|
|Golden Globe for Best Actress - Musical or Comedy||Keira Knightley||Nominated|
|British Academy Film Awards||BAFTA for Best Film - British||-||Nominated|
|BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role||Brenda Blethyn||Nominated|
|BAFTA Award for Most Promising Newcomer||Joe Wright||Won|
|BAFTA Award for Best Adapted Screenplay||Deborah Moggach||Nominated|
|BAFTA Award for Best Costume Design||Jacqueline Durran||Nominated|
|BAFTA Award for Best Makeup & Hair||-||Nominated|