The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo Should Be A Limited Series

Saturday, March 26, 2022

The adaptation of The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo was finally announced, something I’ve wanted and been intrigued by since I finished the book.

However. It’s going to be a movie on Netflix, and that doesn’t feel right to me. Not just because it's a movie, but because it's Netflix and I have a feeling that it might not be the right fit for this book. Just from the tone of the book, I would've guessed it would be more in tone with HBO or Hulu. It's an epic period drama about Hollywood, and women-centered. HBO and Hulu have had success with stories about women adapted from novels, as evidenced by Reese Witherspoon's projects with both networks, Big Little Lies (season 1) and Little Fires Everywhere.

Now to the crux of my argument: you cannot pack this novel into two hours. You want to tell a multi-decade story about a woman, her career, and her seven husbands in two hours? Ha! It needs multiple episodes to breathe and giver her marriages enough time to show the impact each one had on her and how she lived and worked. I don't think it should be seven episodes, one per husband. I think it should be nine. One for Evelyn's early life, seven per husband and those parts of her life, and one for Monique and how this interview and all these revelations impacted her, make her a true character and not just our conduit. 

When adapting something, it has to be the right medium and storyteller. Storyteller, we'll have to wait and see, but I just don't think a Netflix movie is the medium for it. Unless, it's an awards movie, sometimes, Netflix movies aren't talked about for longer than a weekend, if that. I think this material needs the prestige of an HBO or, lately, Hulu series to give it all the time and attention this story deserves.

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