Archive | April 2012

Episode 7 – The Most Awkward Dance Ever

Lizzie Bennet talks Mrs. Bennet‘s joy, catching the bouquet, and an extremely awkward and scarring dance with William Darcy.

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Episode Analysis:

Joslyn Dechant’s Pride & Prejudice vs The Lizzie Bennet Diaries-7

Cast:

Lizzie BennetAshley Clements

Crew:

Executive Producer – Hank Green
Executive Producer – Bernie Su
Producer – Jenni Powell
Director – Bernie Su
Writer – Bernie Su
Cinematography – Jason Raswant
Assistant Director – Stuart Davis
Editor – Hank Green
Consulting Producer – Margaret Dunlap
Transmedia Producer – Jay Bushman
Intro Music and Graphics – Michael Aranda
Makeup – Heather Begley
Production Designer – Katie Moest
Production Assistant – Jeff Jarvis

Musical Numbers

A twitter exchange between Caroline Lee, Bing Lee, and William Darcy

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Episode 6 – The Snobby Mr. Douchey

Lizzie Bennet elaborates on her encounter with William Darcy with the help of Lydia Bennet portraying Bing Lee.

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Episode Analysis:

Joslyn Dechant’s Pride & Prejudice vs The Lizzie Bennet Diaries-6

Cast

Lizzie BennetAshley Clements
Lydia BennetMary Kate Wiles

Crew:

Executive Producer – Hank Green
Executive Producer – Bernie Su
Producer – Jenni Powell
Director – Bernie Su
Writer – Rachel Kiley
Cinematography – Jason Raswant
Assistant Director – Stuart Davis
Editor – Hank Green
Consulting Producer – Margaret Dunlap
Transmedia Producer – Jay Busman
Intro Music and Graphics – Michael Aranda
Makeup – Heather Begley
Production Designer – Katie Moest
Production Assistant – Jeff Jarvis

BTS: Slut-shaming

This Post is syndicated fro Bernie Su‘s Tumblr

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gremlinowl asked: First off, I love the series- it’s absolutely brilliant. However, as a somewhat strong feminist, I do wonder at the slut shaming of Lydia. I understand it’s Lizzie who’s speaking, and she is highly judgmental, but I always read her as being a forward looking feminist in the book, whereas she seems somewhat less so in this series. Regardless of whether this issue is addressed, I’ll keep watching- and enjoying immensely!- but it would help with my peace of mind.

 

- This is my response to the Slut-shaming critique we’ve been getting - 

Hi GremlinOwl

Thanks for watching the show. The slut shaming critique is definitely something we’re aware of and honestly one of the few disappointments we have with the reception of the series. I’d like to clarify that we are not defending it. The critique is a fair one. It really is something we simply missed on.

Lizzie’s line early in episode 2 when she casually refers to Lydia as a “whooreey – slut”  is especially one I really really wish I had caught and taken back. :/

As for where it came from, I think it was a by product of our early development of the character and “what would Lydia be if she was modernized”.  We just overlooked it (not just Hank and I, but the whole writing team as well). Our only real response to this is that the Limbaugh “slut” comments and the gender political lines of this year’s presidential campaign hadn’t happened yet when we wrote and shot those episodes.

Basically, playfully referring to a bold, totally unapologetic, and presumably very promiscuous young woman (annoying sister or not) as a “slut” today has very different connotations now than it did 3-4 months ago. Again not defending, just giving context.

I’d like you (and the rest of the fans) to know that we at The LBD team have definitely been making adjustments to future episodes regarding this matter. I don’t think you’ll see us toning down Lydia but you will see us adjusting Lizzie’s choice of words and actions in dealing with her. I will say that Lydia provides an amazing foil and contrast to Lizzie in our version and I hope you and the fans will continue to enjoy the head butting that these two have throughout the story.

As for the modernization of Lizzie as a forward thinking feminist, I can totally see that interpretation. As a man, I don’t know if I have the right to say that Lizzie will fill that forward feminist archetype but I will say that she’ll continue to be idealistic, vocal, and forward thinking. One thing I will add for our Lizzie is that though she is beloved for being those things, our Lizzie can’t be beloved 100% of the time with everything she says and does. I just don’t find that to be possible if you’re idealistic and vocal (man or woman).

Finally, one of the challenging thematic changes we had to consider in our series is to incorporate the fact that women in the modern era have many more choices in life than in the 18th century.  So you will definitely continue to see that develop, acted upon, and vocalized by not just Lizzie but in Charlotte and Jane as well. – It may not be there yet, since every episode thus far has been set up and Darcy/Bing plot, but it’s definitely coming.

Thanks for watching,

Bernie Su

Lizzie Bennet Diaries Co-Creator and Head Writer

After the Wedding

A twitter exchange with Bing Lee reacting to Jane Bennet’s Lookbook post followed by commentary from Caroline Lee, and William Darcy

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BTS: Three Bennet Sisters – from Hank

This post is syndicated from Hank’s Tumblr

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So my partner in the Lizzie Bennet Diaries, Bernie Su, has already talked about why there are only three Bennet Sisters in our adaptation (and five in the novel) and since I just saw a much-thumbed comment lamenting the decision, I wanted to put my two cents in.

First, our goal is not to re-create Pride and Prejudice exactly. It’s a re-telling, somewhere between a strict adaptation, and the plot homage of Bridgett Jones. We’re following the story, but lots of characters are going to be left out, or morphed into…well…I don’t want to give too much away.

But we had to think seriously about who we would (and could) include. Mary and Kitty have their charms but, from my perspective as a P&P fanboy serve mostly non-character purposes. They show two things with their mere existence that are more important than their personalities or characters.

  1. They show that the Bennets were desperate to have a son, but were unlucky enough to have all girls. They needed, and were unable to have, a boy to inherit the house and land and take care of the family.
  2. They show (in a way that doesn’t make sense to us now) what dire straights the Bennets are in. The have FIVE DAUGHTERS and NONE of them are going to be taken care of if some of them don’t find suitable husbands.

It’s easy to forget the seriousness of Lizzie’s refusal of Mr. Collins because it doesn’t make sense in a world where the thought of women being unable to own property is ludicrous. Marrying Mr. Collins would be an extremely selfless (not selfish) act on Lizzie’s part. The house and estate would remain in the family and she would be able to take care of any unmarried sisters. As Lady Catherine points out, having the younger daughters “out” or “available for courting” before the older daughters were married was very uncommon and a sign of some desperation.

Lizzie’s refusal isn’t just a refusal of wealth for her, it’s a refusal of security for her entire family. Which is why it’s so unthinkable to her mother and to Mr. Collins that she would refuse.

We obviously now live in a world where women can own property, so none of this is relevant. As creators, we need to outline this tension in other ways, of course, and those ways would only be confused by more daughters.

We are not attempting to re-create the story word for word…we’re trying to re-create the spirit of the story, to imagine what the characters would be like in a modern situation that is completely different in specifics, but surprisingly similar with a broader view.

If you haven’t checked out the Lizzie Bennet Diaries, it’s being very well received and I’d love it if you would. Expect new episodes Monday and Thursday!

Editing Feedback

Lizzie Bennet tweets Charlotte Lu after the release of episode 5 in which Charlotte, while editing, purposefully and with humorous intent left in an close up of Lizzie’s chest.

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Episode 5 – After the Wedding: The Real Bing Lee

Lizzie Bennet and Jane Bennet discuss her encounter with the mysterious Bing Lee. Charlotte Lu gets creative with the editing.

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Episode Analysis:

Joslyn Dechant’s Pride & Prejudice vs The Lizzie Bennet Diaries-5

Cast:

Lizzie BennetAshley Clements
Jane BennetLaura Spencer
Charlotte LuJulia Cho

Crew:

Executive Producer – Hank Green
Executive Producer – Bernie Su
Producer – Jenni Powell
Director – Bernie Su
Writer – Rachel Kiley
Cinematography – Jason Raswant
Assistant Director – Stuart Davis
Editor – Hank Green
Intro Music and Graphics – Michael Aranda
Consulting Producer – Margaret Dunlap
Transmedia Producer – Jay Bushman
Makeup – Heather Begley
Production Designer – Katie Moest
Production Assistant – Jeff Jarvis