In the latest HBO miniseries venture Frances McDormand and director Lisa Cholodenko along with screenwriter Jane Anderson collaborate to adapt Pulitzer prize-winning novel Olive Kitteridge, a miniseries movie starting tonight 11/2 at 9PM ith the first two parts “Pharmacy” and “Incoming Tide”, concluding tomorrow night 11/3 at the same time with the subsequent two parts “A Different Road” and “Security”.
The bringing-to-life of this novel divided into 13 short stories was no small feat, as the text originally written by Elizabeth Strout is so compact with over 25 years of emotion and scenery one cannot help but become attached to this small world conveyed, let alone Olive’s dark one-liners that really get to you (sometimes in the most cringe-worthy way!).
It took five years for McDormand and Anderson to develop Olive Kitteridge, and McDormand notes to “have the opportunity, at this point in [her] professional career, to develop, produce, and act in a piece such as Olive Kitteridge [is the] culmination of everything [she’s] ever had to do”—and watching the miniseries will prove that it is in fact filmable.
Olive Kitteridge, told through the eyes of Olive, is a story of and her husband Henry (Richard Jenkins), who is the local pharmacist. They live in a small New England town Crosby, Maine filled with the usual “illicit affairs, crime, and tragedy”, and learn through each other’s darkness. But while Olive’s story does center around much of her marital relationship she could not do without, there is a lot of emphasis on human suffering and pain universally, or at least in that of Crosby, Maine.
The actual filming took place over three months in the North Shores of Massachusetts, where McDormand even had a large part of designing the gritty summer house in which the movie is filmed. Oh, and BILL MURRAY makes a necessary appearance along with the new “it” girl Ann Dowd, making for a fun group of cameos that were perfectly fit for this story that so well conveys the imperfections and messiness of life.
Watch the premiere tonight at 9PM on HBO, followed by pt. II airing tomorrow at the same time.