Anne Hathaway was born on November 12, 1982, and has starred in a wide variety of movies during her 33 years on this planet... But the one thing many of these movies have in common is that they were novels first. Is Hathaway drawn to adaptations, or is it just a coincidence? Regardless, we’re honoring Hathaway’s special day with a chronological list of her movies that made the jump from page to screen.
"The Princess Diaries"
Hathaway’s big screen debut was as Mia Thermopolis in "The Princess Diaries," where they tried to convince us that bushy hair, unruly eyebrows, and glasses make Hathaway a hideous beast. Meg Cabot wrote "The Priness Diaries" novel, as well as ten more books in the series, and although Hathaway also stared in "The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement," that movie was not based on any of the books.
"The Other Side of Heaven"
In "The Other Side of Heaven," Hathaway plays Jean Sabin, the true love left back home when a Mormon missionary travels to the Tongan islands. This little-seen movie is based on the book "In the Eye of the Storm" written by John H. Groberg, the missionary who spent three years on his Tongan odyssey before being reunited with his bae Jean.
Hathaway played Madeline Bray, the love interest of Nicholas Nickleby in the movie creatively titled "Nicholas Nickleby." The original title is a bit more of a mouthful - "The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby" by Charles Dickens. It was his third book and was released serially, a few chapters every month.
In "Ella Enchanted," Hathaway portrays Ella, who is given the “gift” of obedience at birth. This ends up being a huge bummer until Ella is able to break the curse through the power of love. The movie is loosely based on the novel "Ella Enchanted" by Gail Carson Levine, while the novel itself is loosely based "Cinderella."
"The Devil Wears Prada"
This time it’s frizzy hair and frumpy clothes used to convey Hathaway’s apparent hideousness as Andy Sachs in "The Devil Wears Prada." The novel of the same name was written by Lauren Weisberger and is largely based on her experience working as an overworked assistant at Vogue.
"Alice in Wonderland"
Hathaway becomes the ethereal White Queen (aka Mirana of Marmoreal) in Tim Burton’s visually whacked out "Alice in Wonderland." It is a very loose retelling of Lewis Carroll’s "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland." Very, very loose since the White Queen doesn’t actually appear until the second book, "Through the Looking-Glass."
"Love & Other Drugs"
In "Love & Other Drugs," Hathaway plays Maggie Murdock... A character that does not even exist in the book that inspired the movie. "HARD SELL: The Evolution of a Viagra Salesman" by Jamie Reidy is an exposé of Reidy’s time as a drug rep, and he never wrote about his romantic encounters, because he knew his mom would be reading it.
The movie "One Day" checks in on the lives of Dexter and Emma each year on July 15th for 20 years as they dance around their feelings for each other. Hathaway portrays Emma as she ages and matures over 20 years. Since David Nicholls, the author of the book "One Day," also wrote the screenplay, it’s a very faithful adaption.
Hathaway finally won an Oscar as the tragic Fantine from "Les Misérables." This time her hair truly is shocking, since she shaves it all off. The novel "Les Misérables" by Victor Hugo is a beast of a book, clocking in at 1,500 pages, which means you can work out your arms while you read.
Although they didn’t start out as novels, several of Hathaway’s other movies did begin as written stories. So here’s a shout-out to her other literary roles: Lureen Newsome in "Brokeback Mountain," which was originally a short story of the same name by Annie Proulx; Jane Austen in "Becoming Jane," based on Jane Austen’s letters to her sister; and Selina Kyle in "The Dark Knight Rises," inspired by the Batman comics.
Happy birthday, Anne -- and happy reading!