'Jane Eyre' a favorite to remake

Michael Fassbender and Mia Wasikowska star in "Jane Eyre," a Focus Features release directed by Cary Fukunaga.

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Steve Chiotakis: Charlotte Bronte's celebrated novel 'Jane Eyre' has been adapted for the screen more than two dozen times. There's another version that opens in theaters this week. Why is this classic in literature being made over and over again?

Here's Marketplace's David Gura.


David Gura: Jane Eyre has been played by Virginia Bruce and Joan Fontaine, Anna Paquin and Charlotte Gainsbourg. In 2006, Rebecca Eaton co-produced an adaptation for "Masterpiece Theater."

Rebecca Eaton: You just know it, well, there are some titles that always, always will pull in viewers.

The novel gives screenwriters and directors a lot of room to be creative, she says, so every version is different.

Eaton: You can either do it extremely compactly, just in the house, with the servants and the crazy wife in the attic, or you can add lots of other dimensions to it.

Similarly, you can do it on a low budget or a high one. Either way, Eaton says, it's the story that sells.

Eaton: I think "Jane Eyre" is every romantic, strong woman's dream come true.

Jane gets recognized for her intelligence and inner strength. She doesn't have to compromise. And in the end, she gets the guy.

In Washington, I'm David Gura for Marketplace.

About the author

David Gura is a reporter for Marketplace, based in the Washington, D.C. bureau.

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