The Other Boleyn Girl is one of my favorite books. I am intrigued by English history, and Phillipa Gregory writes excellent historical fiction. All of her books are based on real historical figures and events, but she flowers the stories with her detailed style of writing. I was particularly drawn to this book because it addresses the story of Anne Boleyn. She is one of the most fascinating women of history in my mind. I just don't think any filmmaker could do the book justice.
The film itself has the potential to be an excellent film. With a great cast and storyline, the movie will no doubt do well. However, many people that I have talked to have never heard of the book. Everyone I have talked to is excited about the film release, but I cannot convince them to read the book. They just don't know what they are missing.
I am not saying that the film won't be good; I will just have to take it as a separate entity from the book. Scarlett Johansson and Natalie Portman have yet to displease me, and newcomer Jim Sturgess, known mainly for Across the Universe, is brilliant as well.
Perhaps the only thing I doubt is the casting of Eric Bana as Henry Tudor. He has been in several movies that are popular and well made; Troy and Munich are two. However, he has always been outshined by costars or content. Then there is Hulk, which was just terrible all around. I think they could have picked a stronger actor to play the part of the king. I don't think he is the best main character actor.
I find, however, that reading the book after the movie can be very interesting. The pages of the book have much more space to fill in the details and expound on characters, relationships, or even plots. I really enjoy filling in the gaps from the movie with the book. It has become a hobby of mine to read the book before the movie, especially with Harry Potter, so I can analyze and compare the two mediums. I will definitely have to go back and read The Other Boleyn Girl after I see the film. I want to see what the movie left out.
Check out Phillipa Gregory's works