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 Andy Stanton (author of Mr. Gum) talks about Kate.

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Nombre de messages : 817
Date d'inscription : 23/11/2010

MessageSujet: Andy Stanton (author of Mr. Gum) talks about Kate.   Ven 14 Sep - 8:51

Citation :
How did it feel to find out Kate Winslet wanted to read your 'Mr Gum' stories?
It was pretty surreal, I was half-asleep when my agent rang to tell me that Kate Winslet's American agent had been in touch. 'Why's that then?' I slurred. 'Oh… oh, right, Kate wants to what? Do the audiobooks? Really? Really really?' It seemed unlikely, to say the least. And it just kept on getting more and more unlikely. Eventually Kate got in touch herself and emailed me directly, and then she phoned me and then she took me out for lunch. When we met, I was drenched in sweat, water was just pouring down my face. I thought, 'this is ridiculous, she must think I'm dying of malaria.' Then I realised she probably gets this reaction a lot and I managed to calm down and have a good time. But it's still a very weird idea to get used to - that someone as glamorous and amazing as Kate Winslet would be interested in my silly books. Right up until I held the finished CD in my hand I kept thinking someone would tell me it was all a wind-up. Even now I can scarcely get my head around it.

What do you think Kate’s reading brings to the stories?
Well, as you'd expect, she has the voice of an angel dipped in honey dipped in kittens' tears, and her narration is a thing of beauty - it has authority and warmth and clarity. Listening to her is utterly captivating. But with 'Mr Gum' you have to know how to sell the humour too, and Kate does that brilliantly. There's lots of places where she gets laughs that I wasn't expecting; or where she goes for a different type of laugh than I would have. It's really interesting, because I'd already recorded the first three books myself, so I'm constantly comparing my versions with Kate's. She's certainly better at doing the voices than I am, and she really makes a meal of acting out the more dramatic parts. I love how she's thrown herself into the recordings, she's not afraid to get her hands mucky with my horrible characters and peculiar humour. And it's just inherently funny to have forced Kate Winslet to say my made-up words like 'nibblehead', 'tungler' and 'BLEM!' If nothing else, I've brought a little weirdness into her career. And she's brought a little respectability into mine.

Which books did you enjoy reading when you were young?
Oh boy, um… Lots of stuff, I could be here all day. The very first books I remember are the 'Mr Men' books by Roger Hargreaves, I used to make my mum read me a 'Mr Men' book every night at bedtime. Then I'd get her to 'test' me on all the characters. They were all lined up on the backs of the books, thirty or forty of them - and I'd have to recite them in order. I made my mum do that every night for two years or more, poor woman. Once I could read for myself I loved all sorts of things. 'The Famous Five' and 'The Faraway Tree' books by Enid Blyton were great, but my favourites were her 'Mystery' series featuring the Five Find-Outers and Dog. Then there was Roald Dahl, of course; particularly 'Fantastic Mr Fox' and 'The Twits' (one of the funniest kids' books ever written). I was also a massive fan of The Beano and the Dandy comics…. Hmm, what else? One of my all-time favourites is 'The Eighteenth Emergency' by Betsy Byars, which I got out of the library when I was eight. I can still see myself sitting at the kitchen table back home, reading it in one sitting. Books are the best and as I've said before, a good book is like a friend who's made of paper (or, in the case of audiobooks, like a friend who's made of whatever it is CDs are made of).

Were you inspired by any other stories when writing the Mr Gum books?
I try not to read too many books when I'm working on a new story, especially not children's books and especially especially not funny children's books. Having said that, here's a list of writers, books, musicians and other things that I would say have influenced my writing and whose flavours have crept into 'Mr Gum' at one time or another. It's not a full list, just a few that I can think of off the top of my head: Stephen King; the Asterix books; the Narnia books; 'The Simpsons'; Tom Waits; Frank Zappa; Bob Dylan; 'The Iron Man' by Ted Hughes; Roald Dahl (nothing specific, just background flavouring); Enid Blyton (similar); 'Treasure Island' by Robert Louis Stevenson; 'The Young Ones'; 'Dracula' by Bram Stoker; Charles Dickens. In truth, everything you ever read and see and think will influence the way you write and it will all add to your style. And you can't even tell where some of those influences have come from, but they're there, all right.

If there was an audiobook of your life, which Hollywood actor would be best suited to read it?
I'm tempted to say Kate Winslet again, just because I'm hoping for another free lunch. And I'll try not to sweat so much this time.

Kate took him out to a free lunch. Sweet!
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Nombre de messages : 9387
Age : 27
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Date d'inscription : 01/08/2006

MessageSujet: Re: Andy Stanton (author of Mr. Gum) talks about Kate.   Ven 14 Sep - 10:07

I didn"t know that it was Kate who was first interested in making audiobooks of Mr Gum! That's really cool! Very Happy
I like this answer : "I'm tempted to say Kate Winslet again, just because I'm hoping for another free lunch. And I'll try not to sweat so much this time." Razz
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