Clive Baugh's essay "Twenty of Dickens's Most Memorable Characters" is a couple years old, but I just now came across it, and it's so good I had to share it. In addition to his thoughtful take on characters from various Dickens's novels, there are also lots of great illustrations, many of which I'd never seen before.
"If you're a horse and you're going to be named after a Charles Dickens character, chances are you're going to be named after a notorious villain," speculates Ben Linfoot at SportingLife.com. Linfoot is writing about a horse named Uriah Heep, so I can see why he might think that. But I think Tommy Traddles would make a nice horse's name as well. Or Jenny Wren. Or Newman Noggs . . .
The Buzfuz has an intriguing quote from Scott Eyman's new biography of John Wayne: "Wayne was also a fan of Charles Dickens and if the actor agreed to a business deal, he would always say 'Barkis is willing!', a phrase used by Mr Barkis when he tells David Copperfield that he is ready to marry Peggotty."
Who knew the Duke was a fan of the Master? Good for him!
Everyone's talking Oscars tonight, so let's get into the swim! Here, with help from IMDb, is a list of the films based on Dickens's books that have received Academy Awards and nominations over the years:
Scrooged (1988): nominated for Best Makeup.
Little Dorrit (1988): nominated for Best Supporting Actor (Alec Guinness) and Best Adapted Screenplay.
Mickey's Christmas Carol (1984): nominated for Best Short Film, Animated.
Scrooge (1970): nominated for Best Art Direction-Set Decoration, Best Costume Design, Best Song ("Thank You Very Much"), and Best Score.
Oliver! (1968): won Best Picture, Best Art Direction-Set Decoration, Best Sound, Best Score for a Musical, and an honorary award for choreography (Onna White). Also nominated for Best Actor (Ron Moody), Best Supporting Actor (Jack Wild), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design, and Best Film Editing.
Great Expectations (1946): won Best Cinematography, Black-and-White, and Best Art Direction-Set Decoration, Black-and White. Also nominated for Best Picture, Best Director (David Lean), and Best Writing, Screenplay.
A Tale of Two Cities (1935): nominated for Best Picture and Best Film Editing.
David Copperfield (1935): nominated for Best Picture, Best Film Editing, and Best Assistant Director. (Imagine nominating the assistant director and not the director! I wonder what that was all about.)
What do you suppose Mr. Dickens would wear on the red carpet? Something very dashing, I would think, considering his love for fancy clothes!