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Gala Screening

22nd October 2002 at Lincoln Odeon

Follow the link to see the programme.

Transcribed from the programme:

THE BOOK

'Possession: A Romance' by A.S Byatt - both an intellectual mystery and a triumphant love story - became a surprise best-seller when it was first published in 1990.

An exhilarating novel of wit and romance, this tale of a pair of young scholars researching the lives of two Victorian poets soon became one of the most popular books of the year.

The novel tells the story of Roland Michell and Maud Bailey, two rather unfulfilled young literary scholars who unexpectedly find romance when they discover a surprising link between two Victorian poets whom they have studied.

'Possession: A Romance' won both the Booker Prize and the Irish Times/Aer Lingus International Fiction Prize in 1990.

THE FILM

Oscar-winner Gwyneth Paltrow, Aaron Eckhart, Jennifer Ehle and Jeremy Northam star in the Warner Brothers film version of 'Possession' which will be shown at a special gala screening tonight.

"I loved the book and was very impressed with it," says producer Paula Weinstein.  "I met with Antonia Byatt, who is a remarkable woman, but we both knew it could be difficult to adapt.  It took years to find the right filmmaker and screenwriter, who happened to be the same in this case: Neil LaBute.

"Neil has an enormous understanding and passion for the material: the struggle between men and women, be they Victorian or contemporary.  Dialogues between the sexes, about who's in power, who's the boss, what does it mean to be sexual and to love - that's all Neil LaBute territory."

THE LOCATIONS

Lincoln was in at the very beginning when the first scenes for 'Possession' were shot in August 2000.

A.B Byatt set much of her novel in a fictional Lincoln University, six years before the actual university was opened.

One visit to the University of Lincoln's Brayford Pool campus was enough to persuade the film-makers that the city would be an ideal location for filming.

A 140-strong crew stayed at the university for five days and shot scenes in the main academic building, the learning resources centre and outdoors on campus as well as at Lincoln Central railway station and the Adam & Eve pub on Lindum Road.

THE GALA SCREENING

Tonight's special gala screening of 'Possession' has been arranged by kind permission of Warner Brothers.  It has been organised by a partnership of local organisations comprising the University of Lincoln, BBC Radio Lincolnshire, City of Lincoln Council, Lincolnshire County Council, the Lincoln Echo, Lincolnshire Tourism and the Odeon Cinema.

We very much hope you enjoy tonight's champagne reception and gala screening.  'Possession' will be released in the UK on Friday 25th October 2002.

Compere for the evening is Melvyn Prior from BBC Radio Lincolnshire.

Please make your way from the university to the cinema at 7pm.

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