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Thewlis, Farmiga Have Uphill Push with ‘Boy in the Striped Pajamas’

David Thewlis and Vera Farmiga are hoping that word of mouth does for their Nov. 7 release Miramax adaptation of “Boy in the Striped Pajamas” what it did for John Boyne’s young adult novel, which has sold more than three million copies.

They know they have an uphill push to help make it so, considering the central storyline of the fable involves a friendship between a little boy in a Nazi concentration camp and a little boy on the other side of the electrified fence, who happens to be the commandant’s son.

“There is a bit of a worry that if people open the paper and see there’s a film set in the Holocaust, they’ll think it’s too grim and go see ‘Pineapple Express’ instead,” acknowledges Thewlis, the British star known worldwide as ‘Remus Lupin’ in the Harry Potter movies. Yet, he points out, “The Boy in the Striped Pajamas” has shown it has a power of its own through unveilings in Ireland, England, Spain and last week’s ‘Heartland Film Festival’ in Indianapolis. “Wherever we’ve gone, the reaction is always the same: complete silence as the credits begin to roll, not one person moves, followed by an eruption of thunderous applause.”

He’s quick to add, “The story is totally relevant. You could set it today with different costumes and locations, it’s not particular to the Holocaust.” Thewlis says he didn’t hesitate to say ‘yes’ to playing the commandant, a role “apparently difficult and complex immediately.”

Seven-months-pregnant Farmiga, who traveled to Spain to support the movie, has her hopes up for it. “So often the films I care most about don’t get seen, so being able to support this one is a pleasure,” notes the “The Departed” actress, who has promo chores ahead in New York. She’ll be taking maternity time off shortly.

“I’m embarking on the biggest role of my life,” she notes with a smile. “Fortunately I have a great support system in my husband,” she says of Deadsy keyboardist Renn Hawkey. “He’s very encouraging.”

· Published | 24 October 2008
· Journalists | Marilyn Beck and Stacy Jenel Smith
· Source | © Creators
· Credit | Submitted by Amanda

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