We all read William Golding’s Lord of the Flies in high school, right? Depending on the book’s influence on you, one of the book’s most memorable factors was probably the fact that the characters are all young boys trapped on an island together. They eventually turn against each other in aggressive and even deadly ways. According to HelloGiggles, we’ll soon see an entirely different approach to this story in the form of an all-female cinematic remake.
One of the film’s writers and directors, David Siegel, told Deadline that now is the time to rework the classic story because it is “especially relevant today.” His partner Scott McGehee said that switching the cast’s gender “shifts things in a way that might help see the story anew. It breaks away from some of the conventions, the ways we think of boys and aggression.”
Now, normally I’m all for female-heavy casts promoting girl power. But after seeing the internet’s response to this news, I’m one of hundreds who aren’t crazy about an all-female Lord of the Flies—and for a good reason. Given the fact that the book tracks the stranded boys becoming more and more savage, both men and women have pointed out that the same pattern happening with girls is a little less believable. I mean, women get things done.
The all-female Lord of the Flies will just be a group of young women apologizing to each other over and over till everyone is dead.
— Jessica Valenti (@JessicaValenti) August 31, 2017
Lord of the Flies starring only girls: "Girls get marooned on an island. Band together to find food, shelter, rescue. Nobody dies. The end."
— Clara Mae (@ubeempress) August 30, 2017
People are also concerned about a female-centric story being told by two men.
Written and directed by men...I'm thinking women won't be represented well in this...
— David Shane McD (@DavidShaneMcD) August 31, 2017
In case Twitter doesn't convince someone of this idea's flaws, someone even dug up text of Golding explaining why the characters are boys. This is basically a message from the grave forecasting this film's negative response.
some director: all girls lord of the flies!!
william golding himself: pic.twitter.com/vnuzK28g20
— jack @ 7 days (@nightheatre) August 31, 2017
"If you land with a group of little boys, they are more like a scaled-down version of society than a group of little girls would be," Golding said in the undated interview. "I think women are foolish to pretend they are equal to men, they are far superior and always have been. But one thing you can't do with them is take a bunch of them and boil them down...into a set of little girls who would then become a kind of image of civilization, of society."
Um, preach, Golding!
There's no word yet about how McGehee and Siegel view this understandable criticism. According to Deadline, the deal for the film has just closed, so writing the script is the next step for the duo. No matter how this movie turns out, it's sure to inspire interesting conversation about staying faithful to a book's message in film adaptations.