I discovered something equally exciting and terrifying today while browsing google. They are planning on turning one of my favorite books into a movie. Sloppy Firsts is the first in a a series of 5 books (the Jessica Darling series) by Megan McCafferty that I had the fortune to stumble upon probably close to a decade ago while browsing the library. It’s a series that I actually own (and I don’t own many) because when I need to delve into Jessica Darling’s world absolutely nothing else will do.
While I’m hesitantly looking forward to this page to screen transformation I’m really worried about it for a few reasons like:
1. I have no idea how they’re going to turn a book of journal entries into a movie. Granted I didn’t know how they’d turn Life of Pi into a movie when I read the book and they did a phenomenal job. I also saw The Golden Compass be mutilated and I haven’t been able to look at that book the same way since the film was released. I don’t want Jessica’s story to be completely destroyed.
2. Who would actually play these characters? I can’t think of a single nor collection of actors/actresses who would be able to adequately play these characters and embody them the way they need to be. However I don’t know many actors/actresses but I can’t see anyone who is currently popular playing Jessica Darling or her companions.
3. By making a movie, we’re giving Jessica Darling a face. All of the books in the series have a picture of a girl on the front but her face is never shown. I don’t know if that was intentional or not but I like the fact that there is currently no face to Jessica. We meet Jessica right before her 16th birthday but we follow her through a huge phase of change in her life encompassing years which has always made her relatable to me. Through Jessica, the author has a knack of perfectly stringing together words to describe the feelings and emotions that I consistently fail to articulate myself. Whenever I feel like no one I know would understand my feelings, I read this series, all 5 of the books cover to cover and come out feeling completely understood. I feel like anyone who reads this series (particularly those who identify as female) all feel like they have a little bit of Jessica in them, we probably all relate to her in different ways but we relate to her. Whether or not that has to do with her anonymity or not I don’t know. I guess I’m just worried I won’t be able to relate to Jessica anymore if they don’t portray her properly in the movie.
4. I’m selfish. Some of the books in this series have been on the New York Times-best sellers list but they’re still relatively unknown (at least among those I know). I adore these books so much I’ve come to feel like they’re this hidden gem that I’ve discovered. Often when I pass by the teen section at the library, I check to see if Sloppy Firsts is on the shelf and more often than not it is. When it’s not, I can’t help but smile and wonder who out there has discovered this amazing character. By turning it into a movie, I no longer get to wonder but I suppose I can learn to share Jessica Darling with the rest of the world.
From what I understand, they’re still in the very early stages of the novel’s transformation to the big screen so hopefully when the time comes, it’ll all work out. Fingers crossed!
Until next time,