Rosemary Sutcliff talks about changing the ending of stories and songs

The film The Eagle (2011), based upon Rosemary Sutcliff’s historical novel The Eagle of the Ninth (1954), involves the same start but a different final ending from the book. At the time of the film’s release I commented to reviewers and journalists that I thought Rosemary would have understood that film story-telling had its own needs, and that it was not the same as book story-telling. However, I have come to wonder if that was the appropriate reply. More recently  I came across this quotation from Rosemary Sutcliff, speaking of something else:

I do not think that you can be changing the end of a song or a story like that, as though it were quite separate from the rest. I think the end of a story is part of it from the beginning.

Author: Anthony Lawton

Chair, Sussex Dolphin, family company which looks after the work of eminent children’s & historical fiction author Rosemary Sutcliff (1920-92). Formerly CEO, chair & trustee of various charity, cultural & educational enterprises in UK.

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