WEIRDLAND: Brokeback Mountain, source of irritation

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Brokeback Mountain, source of irritation

"It was an Oscar-winning film lauded for its sensitive portrayal of two lovelorn cowboys and their illicit passion in America's homophobic Midwest. But despite the success of Brokeback Mountain, starring the late Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal, the author on whose story it was based has complained that the tale has become "the source of constant irritation in my private life".Annie Proulx, 73, the Pulitzer prize-winning author whose short story was made into the Hollywood film in 2005, said she had been pestered ever since by "pornish" mail sent by fans offering their interpretations of the story.

When the story was published in 1999, it was praised for its delicate handling of homophobia in the ranching country of Wyoming. But her fans feel she could have gone further in her descriptions of the love shared by the two central characters.

She told The Wall Street Journal: "There are countless people out there who think the story is open range to explore their fantasies and to correct what they see as an unbearably disappointing story. They constantly send ghastly manuscripts and pornish rewrites of the story to me, expecting me to reply with praise and applause for 'fixing' the story. They certainly don't get the message that if you can't fix it, you've got to stand it.

"Brokeback Mountain has had little effect on my writing life, but is the source of constant irritation in my private life."The film, directed by Ang Lee, received critical acclaim and was nominated for eight Academy Awards, winning three".


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