Shirley Jackson's 'We Have Always Lived In The Castle' Is Being Made Into A Movie
Shirley Jackson's macabre tale of two reclusive sisters and their hostile neighbors will soon hit the silver screen. That's right, a We Have Always Lived in the Castle movie is coming.
If you haven't read the book yet, don't worry. There are no spoilers here. Also, please go out and grab a copy immediately, because 1) you can read it in a day, and 2) it's a classic.
Published in 1962, We Have Always Lived in the Castle follows a short period in the life of 18-year-old Mary Katherine "Merricat" Blackwood, who narrates the novella. Merricat lives with her older sister, Constance, and their Uncle Julian in an old, secluded house on the outskirts of a village.
The little family has had limited contact with their neighbors since the other Blackwoods died six years ago, after eating poisoned sugar during a fateful family dinner. Constance was put on trial for murder, and was acquitted, but the villagers' taunts have forced her to live as something of a hermit, only going out so far as her garden.
Merricat has become Constance's protector. In addition to running errands and vetting visitors, the youngest Blackwood arranges talismans around their home to ward off misfortune. When the sisters' cousin Charles shows up, Merricat must find some way to get rid of him, before he takes over Constance and her inheritance.
The We Have Always Lived in the Castle movie stars Alexandra Daddario and Taissa Farmiga as Constance and Merricat. Captain America actor Sebastian Stan portrays Charles Blackwood, and American Gods actor Crispin Glover has signed on as Uncle Julian. Stacie Passon is directing the movie, which began filming in Dublin in August, based on a script co-written with Mark Kruger. Michael Douglas, Jared Goldman, Robert Mitas and Robert Halmi, Jr. are producing the We Have Always Lived in the Castle movie.
We Have Always Lived in the Castle isn't the first of Shirley Jackson's stories to make it to theaters. Her 1954 novel, The Bird's Nest, hit the silver screen in 1957 as Lizzie. The more famous The Haunting of Hill House was adapted for film twice, in 1963 and 1999; both derivations were titled The Haunting. Finally, "The Lottery" — A.K.A. that creepy short story you read in high school — has been adapted into a short film and two made-for-TV movies.
2016 marks the 100-year anniversary of Jackson's birth. The author died in 1965. Her unpublished works were printed and bound in 1997 as Just an Ordinary Day.