Wednesday, March 07, 2007

And Then It Happened: Shyamalan On Top

Fox suddenly just woke up to The Happening.
When we last discussed M Night Shyamalan's Green Effect/Planet, it was being sent back from a round of the studios, rejected, dejected, tail between its legs. Shyamalan was down, but not out - one promised rewrite later and Tom Rothman at Fox has done the right thing. He has given the film a greenlight.

Shooting will begin this August in - where else? - Philadelphia, and the film should premiere next summer. Variety suggest the male lead is going to go to a very big star; we've heard that Bryce Dallas Howard is in talks to appear too.

Apparently, the major change from the previous draft is a slide towards a scarier atmosphere and harder-edged suspense. Indeed, this is now expected to be Shyamalan's first R-rated film. Another change, of course, was the title. The film is now named The Happening, doubtlessly after the superb song by The Supremes. If I like the film one half as much as I do the song, I'll be very happy indeed.

In case you don't know the song, the lyrics are at the bottom of this post. They've got a very clear relevence to the plotting of this nature-gone-wild disaster thriller, and it was quite fun to listen to the song again and imagine how Shyamalan must have felt when he picked this tune to fit into his story. It made me smile from ear to ear - he must have done a little dance.

As a footnote, note that The Happening - the song, not the film - was indeed the theme tune to a movie in the first place. Elliot Silverstein's hair-tastic kidnapping comedy starred Faye Dunaway, Anthony Quinn and Michael Parks and you really should check it out, if you can. Sadly, there's no DVD yet, as far as I can see, and the film is, to say the least, rather dated, so you might never get a chance, but do keep an eye out for cash-in programming on TV next summer.

Here are the lyrics, then - and no, the bit about 'Is it real? Is it fake?' does not refer to some last minute twist. Scout's honour.

Hey life, look at me
I can see the reality
'Cause when you shook me, took me, outta my world
I woke up
Suddenly I just woke up to The Happening

When you find that you left the future behind
'Cause when you've got a tender love
You don't take care of
Then you better beware of The Happening

One day you're up
When you turn around
You find your world is tumbling down
It happened to me and it can happen to you

I was sure, I felt secure
Until love took a detour
Yeah!
Riding high on the top of the world it happened
Suddenly it just happened
I saw my dreams torn apart
When love walked away from my heart
And when you lose a precious love you need to guide you
Something happens inside you, The Happening

Now I see life for what it is
It's not all dreams
It's not all bliss
It happened to me and it can happen to you
Ooh, and then it happened
Ooh, and then it happened
Ooh, and then it happened

Is it real?
Is it fake?
Is this game of life a mistake?
'Cause when I lost the love
I thought was mine for certain
Suddenly it starts hurting
I saw the light too late
When that fickle finger of fate
Yeah!
It came and broke my pretty balloon
I woke up
Suddenly I just woke up
To The Happening

So sure, I felt secure
Until love took a detour
'Cause when you got a tender love
You don't take care of
Then you better beware of
The Happening

1 comment:

Hotspur said...

Actually, "The Sixth Sense" was rated R in America. Dunno about the UK.