Directed by McCardle O'Hanlon: A Cinematic Story

Rated 5.00/5 based on 1 review
McCardle O’Hanlon directs a film about the life of Prince Henry, son of James I of England. Jayden Harnett gets the role. O’Hanlon’s first cut is a mess, and he reshoots scenes. After the film premieres Jayden Harnett makes a surprising decision. More
Available ebook formats: epub
About Jeff Hopkins

About the Author
Jeff Hopkins (1950) is a retired schoolteacher. He lives in Western Australia. As the drama master at a private boys’ school he wrote eleven original musical plays and produced and directed them at the school.
In 1992, he researched and wrote a family history, 'Life’s Race Well Run', and after retiring in 2006 he has written thirteen novels, a factional biography and a memoir.
• Artifice (2015)
• Gnarl (2015).
• The Spiv: The Robbie Sparrow Story (2015)
• Impressment: Managers, Actors and Impressed Boys (2015)
• Benedict Lovelace and the Travelling Show (2016)
• Reflections; A Story of Friendship (2016)
• Rocking Horse Rider (2016)
• The Hydrographer: The Clyde Steadman Story (2017)
• Lord Gnarl : A Sequel to Gnarl (2019)
• Handsome Jack: A Whizz-kid’s Story (2019).
• A Horse Called Signs: A Sequel to Handsome Jack (2020)
• Alaric Pinder Boor: A Life Reimagined (2020)
• Gnarl: Caliphs and Kings:Concluding the Gnarl Trilogy (2020)
The Headmaster: Frederick Charles Faulkner's Story (2021)
• Creatively:A Memoir of Plays, Films, Musicals and Books (2021)
Resilience: The Story of Cameron and Rick - 1972 (2022)

Jeff previously maintained he wrote entirely for pleasure, and to fill in the long summer months between football seasons. Recently he has admitted that he set himself the task of writing in a number of different genres as part of a three-year programme to learn about creative writing and self-publishing. He said it was like an undergraduate degree course for which there was a strict budget and work schedule.That three years has now stretched. It has since become clear that the whole experiment was one of the most interesting and absorbing things he had done in his life. He continues to write.

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Reviews of Directed by McCardle O'Hanlon: A Cinematic Story by Jeff Hopkins

Michael O'Halloran reviewed on Aug. 30, 2022

In this, his sixteenth novel, Jeff Hopkins takes us on a journey – the making a large budget costume movie about the life of a prince. The prince is question is Henry Frederick Stuart, first son of King James I of England. Destined to become James’ successor, Prince Henry died three months short of his nineteenth birthday in 1612. A cultured and multi-talented young man, he is extolled by some historians as the best king that England never had.

The film is to be directed by an Irishman, McArdle O’Hanlon, whose successful earlier films had been gritty, urban dramas focusing on dysfunctional families, drug use and violence. O’Hanlon faces many challenges with this project, but chief among them is to cast a youth capable of meeting the many challenges presented by the lead role. His casting director has assembled a short-list of young men for the role of the prince and his friends at court, but O’Hanlon holds off final casting. He turns to an old friend, David Anderson, a teacher of drama at a private boy’s college to broaden his search. Anderson suggests that O’Hanlon see his latest production, in which a final-year student, Jayden Harnett, plays the lead in Shakespeare’s King Richard II. O’Hanlon is impressed with Harnett’s talent and organises for him to be screen-tested. Casting a young man with limited experience is a risk, but one that O’Hanlon is happy to take given Harnett’s talent and physique.

The novel effectively charts two journeys – the fraught process embarked upon by O’Hanlon in making the film, and the steep learning curve willingly embraced by Harnett in the film’s demanding lead role. Both O’Hanlon and Harnett are in uncharted territory and this reader found himself eager to follow developments. With a background in both senior secondary teaching and filmmaking, Hopkins guides us assuredly through their interwoven journeys. Throughout the novel the reader learns much about both the contested history of Prince Henry and the numerous technical and logistical challenges of film production. However, it is Hopkins’ ability to bring the characters in the novel to life that most impressed this reader, especially the author’s empathy with Harnett’s metamorphosis from schoolboy to a mature and sensitive young man who emerges more confident about his future path.
(reviewed 6 days after purchase)
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