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9 Adventurous Adaptations of ‘Jane Eyre’

September 19, 2018 by Amelia Reynolds
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Book-It Repertory Theatre’s latest production is Charlotte Brontë’s romantic, epic bildungsroman “Jane Eyre,” which is playing through Oct. 14. Adapted and directed by Julie Beckman, this production has the titular character (played by Mi Kang)  narrate the story in real-time. For all you Eyre-ophiles out there looking to experience as many variations of the story as possible, here’s a list of other unique adaptations in honor of Book-It’s latest production.

Get tickets to see “Jane Eyre” at Book-It Repertory Theatre. 

“Ardiente Secreto”
Jane Eyre is, in a word, escandolo, so this framework for the story makes a lot of sense. Though the 20-part serial hits the same plot points as the original narrative, it takes place in Mexico in 1978, and gussies up the narrative even more by adding melodramatic characteristics. For example, “Jane” is a woman named Mariana, and the child Mariana governs is a mute.

“BBC Presents: Jane Eyrehead”
In 1982, Second City Television performed a “Jane Eyre” parody entitled BBC Presents: “Jane Eyrehead,” starring John Candy, Andrea Martin, Eugene Levy, and Martin Short. In it, the characters are crass buffoons, and the long-running joke is how homely and dimwitted Jane is.

“Jane Eyre”
The 1943 film adaptation of “Jane Eyre” has a fun piece of trivia — one of the screenwriters of this film is dystopia novelist Aldous Huxley, author of “Brave New World.” Though the film stays true to the original, Huxley had to cleverly skirt British censorship regulations about depictions of madness by rendering the mad Mrs. Rochester largely unseen. Not only did this allow for her character to stay in the movie, her absence, in turn, made her character that much more menacing.

“Jane Slayre”
From the author of “
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies,” Jane Slayre is Sherri Browning Erwin’s vampire Jane Eyre novel where the protagonist is a no-nonsense vampire hunter. This epic, supernatural spin-off reimagines prim and proper characters as blood-thirsty monsters.

“Jane F–king Eyre”
J.K. Really’s retelling of Jane Eyre is exactly as the title suggests: the same story, but, in this one, Jane speaks with a modern vernacular and curses a a lot.

“Jenna Starborn”
Sharon Shinn took the character Jane Eyre and made her intergalactic. “
Jenna Starborn” is a reimagining of “Jane Eyre” as a science-fiction romance tale, with the titular character as a bright but impoverished nuclear technician who falls for her employer, Everett Ravenbeck, and it’s chock full of cyborgs!

“Jane Airhead”
This young adult novel by Kay Woodward is about present-day Charlotte, a 13-year-old so obsessed with Jane Eyre that she seeks to find the perfect Mr. Rochester for her mom.

“Jane Eyre Laid Bare: The Classic Novel with an Erotic Twist”
The title explains it all for Eve Sinclair’s retelling.

“Jane Steele”
This novel by Lyndsay Faye takes “Jane Eyre” in a completely new direction by asking the question “What if Jane Eyre were a serial killer?”