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Anne of Green Gables (1985 Television Miniseries)

Anne of Green Gables was a television miniseries produced by Sullivan Films (Anne of Green Gables Productions) in association with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, PBS/Wonderworks, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, TV-60 Film Production/ZDF, City-TV, and with the participation of Telefilm Canada. Adapted from L.M. Montgomery’s novel by Kevin Sullivan and Joe Wiesenfeld and directed by Kevin Sullivan, the miniseries premiered as two ninety-five-minute instalments on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation on 1–2 December 1985; it aired subsequently as four forty-five-minute instalments on PBS on 17, 24 February, and 3, 10 March 1986 and on 2, 9, 16, and 23 November 1986 on the ZDF network (in what was then West Germany), and as two instalments on 18–19 December 1989 on City-TV.

The cast included Megan Follows (Anne Shirley), Colleen Dewhurst (Marilla Cuthbert), Richard Farnsworth (Matthew Cuthbert), Patricia Hamilton (Rachel Lynde), Rosemary Radcliffe (Mrs. Barry), Schuyler Grant (Diana Barry), Marilyn Lightstone (Miss Stacey), Charmion King (Aunt Josephine Barry), and Jackie Burroughs (Mrs. Amelia Evans).

Budgeted at $3.4 million, this miniseries averaged 5.6 million viewers when it premiered in Canada in 1985, making it the highest-rated dramatic program in the history of the CBC. For the most part, this miniseries is a faithful adaptation of the original novel; omissions aside, most of the changes made are more structural than creative, some of them closely paralleled to Nicholls’ direction of the 1934 talkie version of Anne of Green Gables. Ultimately, however, Sullivan and Wiesenfeld continue the tradition of refocusing the plot on Anne’s relationship with Gilbert. Most of the scenes invented by the screenwriters serve to emphasize their budding relationship: as Susan Drain concludes in her detailed review of the television miniseries, “the film, by concentrating on the love story, is in some ways more old-fashioned, or even narrower, than the book. The film is an exquisite romance, but the novel is a Bildungsroman. That reduction is, finally, a loss” (72).

The success of this miniseries prompted three sequels – Anne of Green Gables: The Sequel (1987), Anne of Green Gables: The Continuing Story (2000), and Anne of Green Gables: A New Beginning (2008) – along with a spin-off series (1990–1996), an animated series (2000–2001), and an animated film (2005), all from Sullivan Entertainment. This Anne of Green Gables adaptation won ten Gemini Awards (including Best Dramatic Mini-Series), an Emmy Award for Outstanding Children’s Program, a Peabody Award, and numerous other international awards and accolades.

DVD (English)

Anne of Green Gables. Sullivan Entertainment Presents. Toronto: Sullivan Entertainment, [2000].*

Anne of Green Gables. Sullivan Entertainment’s. Toronto: Sullivan Entertainment, [2000].* [Includes behind-the-scenes footage, missing scenes, previews, and miscellaneous materials. Has been reissued since.]

Anne of Green Gables: Five-Disc Collector’s Edition. Toronto: Sullivan Entertainment, [2006].

Home Video (English)

Anne of Green Gables. A Kevin Sullivan Production. Toronto: Junior Home Video, n.d.*

Anne of Green Gables. Walt Disney Home Video Presents Wonderworks. Burbank, CA: Walt Disney Home Video, n.d.*

Anne of Green Gables. Sullivan Entertainment Presents. Toronto: Sullivan Releasing, [1995].*

Home Video (French)

Anne…La Maison aux pignons verts. Une production de Kevin Sullivan. Toronto: Junior Home Video, n.d.*

Anne…La Maison aux pignons verts. Sullivan Entertainment présente. Toronto: Sullivan Entertainment, n.d.*

Anne…La Maison aux pignons verts. 4 volumes. Montréal: Imavision Distribution, [2000]. [Volume 1: Anne…La Maison aux pignons verts, episodes 1 and 2; Volume 2: Anne…La Maison aux pignons verts, episodes 3 and 4; Volume 3: Anne…La Maison aux pignons verts, La suite, episodes 1 and 2; Volume 4: Anne…La Maison aux pignons verts: La suite, episodes 3, 4, and 5.

Novelization

The Anne of Green Gables Storybook. Based on the Kevin Sullivan Film of Lucy Maud Montgomery’s Classic Novel. Screenplay by Kevin Sullivan & Joe Wiesenfeld. Storybook adapted by Fiona McHugh. Willowdale, ON: Firefly Books, 1987.

Anne of Green Gables: The Official Movie Adaptation. Based on the Kevin Sullivan Film of Lucy Maud Montgomery’s Classic Novel. Screenplay by Kevin Sullivan & Joe Wiesenfeld. Storybook adapted by Kevin Sullivan. Toronto: Davenport Press, 2008.

Soundtrack

Anne. Original Music Score for the Sullivan Films Emmy Award Winning TV Presentation of Anne of Green Gables [and Anne of Green Gables: The Sequel]. Composed and Conducted by Hagood Hardy. Toronto: Attic Records, n.d. [Issued first as a cassette, then later as a CD.]

Awards

1986 Emmy Awards

Outstanding Children’s Program: Kevin Sullivan and Ian McDougall (Winner)

Outstanding Writing in a Miniseries or a Special: Kevin Sullivan and Joe Wiesenfeld (Nominee)

1986 Gemini Awards

Best Dramatic Mini-Series: Kevin Sullivan and Ian McDougall (Winner)

TV Guide’s Most Popular Program Award: Kevin Sullivan (Winner)

Best Performance by a Lead Actress in a Single Dramatic Program or Mini-Series: Megan Follows (Winner)

Best Performance by a Supporting Actress: Colleen Dewhurst (Winner)

Best Performance by a Supporting Actor: Richard Farnsworth (Winner)

Best Direction in a Dramatic Program or Series: Kevin Sullivan (Nominee)

Best Writing in a Dramatic Program/Series (TV Adaptation): Kevin Sullivan and Joe Wiesenfeld (Winner)

Best Photography in a Dramatic Program or Series: Rene Ohashi (Winner)

Best Production Design or Art Direction: Carol Spier (Winner)

Best Costume Design: Martha Mann (Winner)

Best Picture Editing in a Dramatic Program or Series: Mairin Wilkinson and James Lahti (Nominee)

Best Music Composition for a Single Program (Dramatic Underscore): Hagood Hardy (Winner)

Further Reading

See scholarship and trade articles by Sid Adilman, Jim Bawden, Temma F. Berg, Mike Boone, Ray Conlogue, Peter Dickinson, Susan Drain, Harvey Enchin, Margaret Firth, Jennifer Fisher, Lucie Hall, Alexandra Heilbron, Ann F. Howey, Eric Kohanik, Benjamin Lefebvre, Gillian Mackay, Eleanor Hersey Nickel, K.L. Poe, Don Saunders and Gayle Macdonald, Genevieve Wiggins, and Christopher S. Wren.

Credits

Opening Credits

A KEVIN SULLIVAN PRODUCTION

MEGAN FOLLOWS [Anne Shirley]

COLLEEN DEWHURST [Marilla Cuthbert]

ANNE OF GREEN GABLES

Based on the novel by LUCY MAUD MONTGOMERY
Screen Adaptation: KEVIN SULLIVAN, JOE WIESENFELD

With
PATRICIA HAMILTON [Rachel Lynde]
ROSEMARY RADCLIFFE [Mrs. Barry]
SCHUYLER GRANT [Diana Barry]

MARILYN LIGHTSTONE [Miss Stacey]
CHARMION KING [Aunt Josephine]
and
JACKIE BURROUGHS
as Mrs. Amelia Evans

Special Guest Star: RICHARD FARNSWORTH [Matthew Cuthbert]

Director of Photography: RENE OHASHI c.s.c.
Art Director: CAROL SPIER
Costume Design: MARTHA MANN
Edited by JAMES LAHTI, MAIRIN WILKINSON
Music Composed and Conducted by HAGOOD HARDY
Associate Producer: TRUDY GRANT
Produced by KEVIN SULLIVAN, IAN McDOUGALL
Directed by KEVIN SULLIVAN

Ending Credits

Anne Shirley: MEGAN FOLLOWS
Marilla Cuthbert: COLLEEN DEWHURST
Matthew Cuthbert: RICHARD FARNSWORTH
Rachel Lynde: PATRICIA HAMILTON
Miss Stacey: MARILYN LIGHTSTONE
Diana Barry: SCHUYLER GRANT
Gilbert Blythe: JONATHAN CROMBIE
Aunt Josephine: CHARMION KING
Mrs. Amelia Evans: JACKIE BURROUGHS
Mrs. Barry: ROSEMARY RADCLIFFE
John Sadler: JOACHIM HANSEN
Mrs. Allan: CHRISTIANE KRÜGER
Rev. Allan: CEDRIC SMITH
Mr. Phillips: PAUL BROWN
Josie Pye: MIRANDA de PENCIER
Jane Andrews: TRISH NETTLETON
Ruby Gillis: JENNIFER INCH
Mrs. Hammond: JAYNE EASTWOOD
Mrs. Cadbury: DAWN GREENHALGH
Station Master: JACK MATHER
Mrs. Spencer: VIVIAN REIS
Mrs. Blewett: SAMANTHA LANGEVIN
Alice Lawson: MAG RUFFMAN
Dr. O’Reilly: SEAN McCANN
Madame Selitsky: ROXOLANA ROSLAK
Professor: ROBERT HALEY
Mr. Barry: ROBERT COLLINS
Minnie May Barry: MORGAN CHAPMAN
Tom: DAVID ROBERTS
Essie: NANCY BEATTY
Thomas Lynde: DAVID HUGHES
Prissy Andrews: WENDY LYON
Moody Spurgeon: ZACK WARD
Punch Woman: ANNA FERGUSON
Section Head: REX SOUTHGATE
Pink Woman: JULIANNA SAXTON
Lace Woman: MOLLY THOM
Student: JENNIFER IRWIN
Mrs. Harrington: SANDRA SCOTT
Porter: PETER STURGESS
Mr. Hammond: RAY IRELAND
Fairview Nurse: MARTHA MALONEY
Mme. Selitsky’s Accompanist: STUART HAMILTON
Richard Farnsworth’s Stand-In: GORD NEWSOME

Executive Producer: KEVIN SULLIVAN
Executive in Charge of Production for CBC: NADA HARCOURT
Casting: DIANE POLLEY
Production Manager: NICK GRAY
1st Assistant Director: OTTA HANUS
2nd Assistant Director: KIM WINTHER
3rd Assistant Director: RON FRENCH
Production Co-ordinator: FRAN SOLOMON
Unit/Location Manager: LIN GIBSON
P.E.I. Location Manager: LENNY GALLANT
Director’s Observer: BRONWEN HUGHES
Office P.A.: PAULA NEEDHAM
Script Supervisor: NANCY EAGLES
Production Accountant: DOROTHY PRECIOUS
Assistant Accountant: CAROL JURCHISON
Assistant Art Director: LOUISE DOYLE ALFRED
Art Department Trainee: KATHERINE MATHEWSON
Set Decorator: ELINOR ROSE GALBRAITH
Set Dressers: MARTIN WEINRYB, GARY JACK
Assistant Set Dressers: DANIELLE FLEURY, BOB BARTMAN
Props Masters: VIC RIGLER, ANGELO STEA
Assistant Props: GINA HAMILTON
Construction Supervisor: KIRK CHENEY
Head Carpenter: IAN FRASER
Assistant Head Carpenter: MYLES ROTH
Head Scenic Artist: JAMES McATEER
Scenic Artist: NICK KOSONICK
Costume Design Assistant: DEREK BASKERVILLE
Principal Milliner: GRAHAM DOCKERTY
Wardrobe Coordinator: DELPHINE WHITE
Assistant Wardrobe: MAUREEN GURNEY, MAGGIE THOMAS, KAT MOYER, SHERRY McMORRAN
Make-Up: SHONAGH JABOUR
Assistant Make-Up: JANE MEADE
Hairdresser: IVAN LYNCH
Assistant Hairdresser: JOCELYN MacDONALD
1st Assistant Camera: JOHN HOBSON
2nd Assistant Camera: DAVID PERKINS
2nd Unit Photography: ROBIN MILLER
Stills Photographer: ROB McEWAN
Location Sound Recording: STUART FRENCH
Boom: MICHAEL LACROIX
2nd Boom: PAUL McGLASHAN
Supervising Sound Editor: STEVEN COLE
Supervising Dialogue Editor: SHARON LACKIE
Sound Editors: CATHERINE HUNT, MARTA STERNBERG
Assistant Sound Editor: GUDRUN CHRISTIAN
Foley Artist: ALLEN ORMEROD
Sound Mixer: WALLY WEAVER
2nd Sound Mixer: DANIEL PELLERIN
ADR Foley Mixers: DINO PIGAT, DAVID APPLEBY
Assistant Picture Editor: BEN WILKINSON
On-Line Editor: BERNIE CLAYTON [Cut Disney 2, Restored DVD, and BluRay]
Colorist: LORRAINE GRANT [Note 6] Colourist: KENN ELLIOTT [Sullivan 2 DVD] [Cut Disney2, Restored DVD, and BluRay]
Key Grip: CHRISTOPHER DEAN
Grips: GREG PALERMO, GORD FORBES
Best Boy/Grip: DAN NARDUZZI
Gaffer: MARIS JANSONS
Best Boy: DAVID OWEN
Electrician: FRANK FOSTER
Generator Operator: CACTUS SIMSER
Transportation Coordinator: MICHAEL CURRAN
Driver Captain: JEROME McCANN
Period Vehicles and Livestock: LIONEL PURCELL
Titling, Prints & Sound Mixing: PFA LABORATORIES
Negative Cutter: WENDY LOTEN
Post Production Services: MEDALLION/PFA FILM & VIDEO [Note 8] [Cut Disney2] [On Sullivan 2] [Not on Restored DVD or BluRay]
Green Gables Logo Design: FILM OPTICALS [Not on BluRay]

Miss Dewhurst’s and Miss Follows’
costumes made by
MALABARS

Wardrobe by
COSPROP

Production Services provided by
SULLIVAN FILMS INC. and VENTURA PICTURES INC. [Note 1][Cut from Disney 2] [Cut from Sullivan 2, Restored, and b BluRay]

Filmed on Location at:
DOON PIONEER VILLAGE
SIMCOE COUNTY MUSEUM
McLEAN ESTATE
WENTWORTH HERITAGE VILLAGE
PICKERING MUSEUM VILLAGE
DUNDURN CASTLE
HALTON COUNTY RADIAL RAILWAY
BRUCE’S MILL CONSERVATION AREA
PLEASURE VALLEY RESORT
SPADINA HOUSE
CORNELL HOUSE
BLACK CREEK PIONEER VILLAGE
VICTORIA UNIVERSITY
WINDERMERE HOUSE
RUSTICO SUMMER HAVEN RESORT
ORWELL CORNER/RURAL LIFE MUSEUM
and on location in
SOUTHERN ONTARIO and
PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND, CANADA

The Producers Wish to Gratefully Acknowledge
P.E.I. DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM
PARKS CANADA, P.E.I.
VIDEO ATLANTIC
TORONTO FILM LIAISON OFFICE
ONTARIO FILM VIDEO OFFICE
TORONTO HISTORICAL BOARD
THE STUNT TEAM
FACES AND PLACES
THE IRISH SHOP
M. HALPERT CATERING
SECURITY PACIFIC BANK
STANLEY COLBERT
NORM GARRIOCK &
MICHAEL LEVINE

Anne’s Recital taken from
“THE HIGHWAYMAN”
by Alfred Noyles

The characters and incidents portrayed in this film are fictitious. Any resemblance to any person living or dead is purely coincidental.”

Produced by
ANNE OF GREEN GABLES PRODUCTIONS, INC.
in association with
THE
CANADIAN BROADCASTING
CORPORATION
PBS/WONDERWORKS, and
THE CORPORATION FOR PUBLIC BROADCASTING
TV-60 FILM PRODUCTION
CITY-TV
and with the participation of
TELEFILM CANADA

© ANNE OF GREEN GABLES PRODUCTIONS, INC.
1985

Notes

Note 1: These credits are combined on the DVD. When airing in two parts, the credits are as follows in Part 1:

With
PATRICIA HAMILTON
ROSEMARY RADCLIFFE
SCHUYLER GRANT

And as follows in Part 2:
With
PATRICIA HAMILTON

MARILYN LIGHTSTONE

CHARMION KING
ROSEMARY RADCLIFFE
and
SCHUYLER GRANT
as Diana Barry [Disney 2]

CHARMION KING
ROSEMARY RADCLIFFE
SCHUYLER GRANT
and
JACKIE BURROUGHS
as Mrs. Amelia Evans [Restored DVD]

Note 2: “c.s.c.” cut from second DVD release.

Note 3: Cut from Walt Disney Home Video and from video and DVD releases since 1995.

Note 6. The name “Kenn Elliott” appears here in second DVD release.

Note 7. Credited as “David Owen” in second DVD release.

Note 8. Listed as “Medallion &bul; PFA / Film&bul;Video&bul;Audio” in second DVD release.

Anne Shirley: MEGAN FOLLOWS
Marilla Cuthbert: COLLEEN DEWHURST
Matthew Cuthbert: RICHARD FARNSWORTH
Rachel Lynde: PATRICIA HAMILTON
Diana Barry: SCHUYLER GRANT
Mrs. Barry: ROSEMARY RADCLIFFE
Mr. Barry: ROBERT COLLINS
Gilbert Blythe: JONATHAN CROMBIE
John Sadler: JOACHIM HANSEN
Mrs. Allan: CHRISTIANE KRÜGER
Rev. Allan: CEDRIC SMITH
Mr. Phillips: PAUL BROWN
Josie Pye: MIRANDA de PENCIER
Jane Andrews: TRISH NETTLETON
Ruby Gillis: JENNIFER INCH
Prissy Andrews: WENDY LYON
Mrs. Hammond: JAYNE EASTWOOD
Mrs. Cadbury: DAWN GREENHALGH
Station Master: JACK MATHER
Mrs. Spencer: VIVIAN REIS
Mrs. Blewett: SAMANTHA LANGEVIN
Essie: NANCY BEATTY
Tom: DAVID ROBERTS