All-female Lord of the Flies adaptation sparks backlash

All-female Lord of the Flies adaptation sparks backlash

A new adaptation of Lord of the Flies has drawn widespread criticism on social media for reimagining William Golding’s 1954 novel with a major twist - looking at what would happen if all those shipwrecked on the island were girls.

The all-female remake of the classic novel will be the third English-language adaptation of the book, the last of which was produced in 1990. It is being written Scott McGehee and David Siege, best known for "What Maisie Knew", following a deal with Warner Brothers.

Siegel told Deadline, which first announced the news on Wednesday (30th August)that the pair were out to produce a "very faithful but contemporised" adaptation, to which McGehee added that telling the tale differently would "shift things in a way that might help people see the story anew". 

"It breaks away from some of the conventions, the ways we think of boys and aggression. People still talk about the movie and the book from the standpoint of pure storytelling," McGehee continued. "We’re super eager to put pen to paper".

Some pointed out the irony of two men writing the first female-centric Lord of the Flies, while others have said it misses the point Golding was trying to make about masculinity.

Author Roxane Gay tweeted: "An all women remake of Lord of the Flies makes no sense because... the plot of that book wouldn't happen with all women."

Entertainment Weekly writer Devan Cogan tweeted: "GOOD: A female-centric Lord of the Flies! BAD: A female-centric Lord of the Flies written by... two men", adding: "I think an all-girl LOTF is a GREAT idea! I also think adult men aren't the best choice to write about complicated female power dynamics!"

Chocolat author Joanne Harris also took to Twitter to voice her disapproval of Warner Brothers' choice of scriptwriters: "Lord of the Flies: written by a man about masculinity. An all-female Lord of the Flies, also written by men, seems just a little defensive."

Golding's publisher Faber has yet to comment.