Mary Shelley wrote a novel that would become a cornerstone of the horror genre as well as an early endeavor into the world of science fiction, and only when she was 19-years-old! Since then, Frankenstein has been remade and reimagined more times than are worth counting, and still it’s a tale that continues to fascinate us today.
What should be equally fascinating, however, is the life of its author. Mary Shelley (née Wollstonecraft Godwin) was the daughter of political radicals, her mother an early feminist, who became romantically involved with a still-married Percy Bysshe Shelley, eventually marrying in 1816 (after his wife’s suicide, no less!). That same year the Shelley’s joined Lord Byron on vacation where Mary came up with the tale of man reanimating the dead after an evening discussing the basis of life.
Shelley’s life, and in particular the writing of Frankenstein from her own horrific “waking dream”, will be the source for an upcoming a biopic called Mary Shelley’s Monster. Game of Thrones‘ Sophie Turner has been cast in the lead role, Deadline reports. Starring alongside her as husband and Romantic poet, Percy Shelley is Jeremy Irvine (War Horse), and as her stepsister Claire Clairmont,Taissa Farmiga (American Horror Story).
Scripted by Deborah Baxtrom (director of the comedy web series, Living with Frankenstein, which follows Mary, Percy, and Lord Bryon still alive today in modern L.A.) and directed by Coky Giedroyc (The Killing, Penny Dreadful), Monster explores Mary’s writing of her most famous novel as something of a Faustian tale. In this biopic, Mary will bargain with her “monster” of an alter-ego, making a personal sacrifice in order to achieve literary fame.
Producer Rose Ganguzza (Kill Your Darlings) calls Monster:
“The story of the most extraordinary 19th century teenage heroine told in a visceral, sexy, contemporary way. Our film is not a period drama. It is a story of youth that transcends time, a gothic romance, a love triangle that involves a dark passenger and we are tremendously excited to have such an exciting cast onboard this wonderful project.”
Surely, Monster‘s “visceral” and “sexy” spin is there to cater to a teenage/young adult demographic, as is the casting of Turner, Irvine, and Farmiga. But then again, Mary was a radical in her time, often ostracized even while living as a successful author. It’s quite possible this version of the events that led to Mary Shelley writing Frankenstein could harken closely to the truth.
At the very least, Mary Shelley’s Monster will allow for more focus on the creator rather than the creation, as has been the case for far too long seeing as Shelley’s only other on screen appearance came briefly at the beginning of the Universal horror classic, The Bride of Frankenstein. She was portrayed by actress Elsa Lanchester, who later donned the makeup and wig to become the Monster’s Bride.
What do you think of the casting of Sophie Turner as Frankenstein‘s author, Mary Shelley? Let us hear your opinion on this “visceral, sexy, contemporary” telling of the writer’s life in the comments below!
Mary Shelley’s Monster is slated to begin filming later this year. Stay tuned to Screen Rant for more info!