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The Daily Mail has confirmed Carey Mulligan’s involvement in Sam Mendes’ adaptation of Ian McEwan’s best selling book On Chesil Beach, reporting that she will undergo some pre-production training for her starring role as Florence Ponting:

Carey Mulligan will be taking violin lessons so she can be note perfect to play the heroine in the film of Ian McEwan’s story of sex in England before the sexual revolution.

The story will follow the honeymoon, specifically the wedding night of a young, educated couple, both virgins and living ‘in a time when a conversation about sexual difficulties was plainly impossible’. Florence’s marriage to Edward Mayhew (and frustrations in the consummation of their Chesil Beach honeymoon) is used as a study on the sexual and social geography of pre-revolution 1962 England.

Edward Mayhew has yet to be cast but auditions are underway:

Mendes, his partners at Neal Street Productions and Focus Features are studying screen tests featuring a handful of British actors who could play Edward, a graduate historian, who is more a ‘blokey-bloke’, as someone described him, rather than a pretty boy.

Having read On Chesil Beach, it is clear that the novella won’t be easy to adapt for screen with much of the narrative absorbed in a stream of consciousness recount of memories that could disturb the pacing of the film and disrupt the development of a plot. However with McEwan behind the script the film may benefit from any changes that the author himself makes to adapt his story for screen. With Mulligan suitably in the starring role, perhaps On Chesil Beach will be 2011?s Atonement.

Shooting will take place in the South of England and central London this September on the Neal Street Productions and Focus Features production, with BBC Films potentially joining.

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The British actress is having lessons on how to perfect the string instrument for her upcoming role as Florence Ponting in ‘On Chesil Beach’, which starts shooting in September.

The movie will be directed by Sam Mendes, and is based on the Ian McEwen novel about a young, newly married couple in the early 60s, who remain virgins until their wedding night.

Daily Mail columnist Baz Bamigboye reports: “Carey’s Florence is leader of a string quartet, who dreams of giving recitals at Wigmore Hall, and next week the actress will begin working with a violin teacher so at least she can look as if she knows how to handle the instrument when she’s playing her scales and arpeggios.

“She’s just the right actress to tackle Florence, a woman who comes alive when she’s performing Beethoven’s Opus 18, but who is desperate to be free of her husband’s sexual desires.”

The movie will be the first film Sam has shot in Britain, and the script has been adapted for the big screen by author Ian.

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Effie, a film based on the relationship between Victorian poet and artist, John Ruskin and his unfortunate wife Effie Gray will go into production next month. The film is written by Emma Thompson who will also play Lady Eastlake, and the Oscar-nominated Carey Mulligan will be in the starring role of Gray.

Richard Laxton is directing and Thompson’s husband, Greg Wise, is to produce the film and play the part of Ruskin. According to thefancarpet he and Thompson asked Mulligan to take the part before her success in An Education:

“Carey has a rare quality of being open and unfettered. At the time Effie said she would have borne anything, had Ruskin just been kind. But I can’t play him as an ogre because the audience need to understand why she married this man.”

Ruskin and Gray’s unconsummated love affair will be central to the plot of the film. United on his wedding night in April 1848 with Effie Gray, the girl who had been the object of some of his most beautiful writing during their courtship, Ruskin suddenly realizes he has made a mistake and postpones the consummation.

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This first official poster for “The Electric Slide” has been released featuring Carey and Ewan McGregor as well as the official poster for “Effie” which you can view here (Carey isn’t featured in it). Thank you Ann for the tip.

Collider.com also provided the synopses for “The Electric Slide” and “Effie“:

The Electric Slide tells the true story of suave hipster and celebrity-magnet Eddie Dodson, who in 1980s Los Angeles owned and ran one of the city’s most stylish art deco furniture stores. Celebrities flocked to buy the latest pieces and Eddie was living the high life along with the Hollywood elite.

John Ruskin – the renowned art critic famously dubbed “The Greatest Victorian” takes young Effie Gray as his wife. Effie is twenty years younger and her expectations of marital love are confounded by her husband’s bizarre and troubled personal behaviour. She must also contend with Ruskin’s controlling and snobbish mother. In an attempt to redraw their relationship, Effie and John move to Venice so John may continue his work as Effie seeks solace in the beauty of the city and its people. Venice does little to relieve the stress of their already fragile relationship, and so the unhappy couple move to Scotland accompanied by Ruskin’s protégé, the handsome artist John Everett Millais. As Millais witnesses Ruskin’s disdain for Effie and how truly disconnected the couple are, he begins to feel for her in a way that her husband cannot. Effie must attempt to escape her poisonous marriage without alerting the scandal mongers and attempt to secure romantic fulfillment in the arms of her husband’s young artist friend.

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