26 January 2009

Congrats To Neil Gaiman!

Neil Gaiman is best known for his distinctive, adult speculative fiction that hovers between horror, contemporary fantasy and American fairytale. His closest peer in style is probably British author of children's speculative fiction Roald Dahl.

Now, he has won a Newberry award for a recent work of children's fiction, "The Graveyard Book," featuring a child raised by a vampire, a werewolf and a witch, which is apparently spooky, but family friendly.

Another of his children's offerings is also receiving major recognition.

Coraline is a 2009 animated stop-motion horror fantasy film based on Neil Gaiman's novella of the same name. Directed by Henry Selick, it is scheduled to be released in theaters on February 6, 2009.

The author offers this practical advice on the appropriateness of the movie for children:

I think a good rule of thumb would be, that if your child can cope with The Nightmare Before Christmas and the original Wizard of Oz then they should be able to cope with Coraline just fine.

As a general rule, Coraline the book is much creepier for adults than it is for kids, who tend to read it as an adventure. I suspect that this will be true of the film as well.

The movie is rated PG.

Gaiman's previous film efforts, including Stardust, an adaptation of another of his tales, have not been blockbusters.

His heavily followed blog is notable in its own right as a gold standard for creator-audience communication.

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