Author Dennis Lehane Approves of Martin Scorsese's Shutter Island
03.04.10 by Ryan
With Martin Scorsese's thriller Shutter Island dominating the box office for the second week in a row, it may seem like no surprise that author Dennis Lehane approves of Scorsese's cinematic interpretation of his novel. However, considering the often botched effort of bringing a novel to the screen, Lehane was more than pleased with the movie, telling MTV that he thought Scorsese and his crew "nailed it."
What happens in the movie is ... it's my work being filtered through their vision. And with Scorsese, you're going to get a pretty indelible vision. It was quite the experience to see my work go through his head and ... I thought that was the final icing on the cake. He just interpreted it visually in a way that certainly I never could have predicted.
No stranger to seeing his novels get transformed to the big screen after Mystic River and Gone Baby Gone, Lehane was pleased to see
the movie remain faithful to the original novel, considering the delicate, psychological nature of the story.
It's a book where it's a complete house of cards, and if you remove one it's all over. So you have to be exceptionally faithful to the material, at least structurally. It's impossible to mess with it ... without the whole thing collapsing. Marty was working within that framework, he knew that from the very beginning. I mean, you pull the wrong card and this thing falls apart.
It has to be especially gratifying for Lehane, who admitted he had "very little" to do with the screenwriting process, preferring to "stay the hell out of [the screenwriter's] way." Lehane was only privy to a later copy of Laeta Kalogridis's script, and had a few choice words for her screenplay.
I don't know which draft it was, but it was pretty late in the process. And what's become a running joke was actually true: my only objection to her draft was that it was a little too respectful of the material.