SARAH MURRAY - stuff.co.nz - 28/08/2011
Fiona Samuel talks to Sarah Murray about the romps, rebellion and scandal behind one of New Zealand's most revered writers, Katherine Mansfield.
Samuel has just been sent the 20-second trailer from TVNZ for her new film Bliss – a biopic on the early life of Katherine Mansfield screening tonight in TV1's Sunday Theatre slot.
"They have an instinct for what makes a juicy story – do you want to see it?" she asks, plonking her silver Apple laptop on the table and pressing play. Skin and sex flash up on the screen juxtaposed with moments of rigid Edwardian severity. We watch a group of ladies sitting ramrod straight, drinking tea and talking marriage and childbirth.
"Well, at least it ought to be a paid occupation seeing as it's compulsory," bleats a young Katherine Mansfield on the latter while crunching down on a brandy snap. The room falls silent.
Samuel laughs loudly. "I mean. I'd watch that," she says, snapping the laptop shut.
The film follows Mansfield's transformation from Katie Beauchamp, a rebellious young girl struggling with the rules of genteel society, to Katherine Mansfield: published writer. It was while reading some biographies on Mansfield that Samuel realised where the true story lay.
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