Audrey Hepburn created a cultural icon when she stepped into the high heels of Breakfast at Tiffany’s leading lady. Swati Sharma asks authors if they prefer the book or film.
‘What I’ve found does the most good is just to get into a taxi and go to Tiffany’s. It calms me down right away, the quietness and the proud look of it; nothing very bad could happen to you there, not with those kind men in their nice suits.’ – Holly Golightly
Breakfast at Tiffany’s is a story about a free-spirited girl Holly Golightly who lives in New York City. With her tousled blonde hair, black glasses and chic black dresses she can make your heart miss a beat. She is a style diva, a party girl and loves anyone who is a millionaire. The story is set in the late 1940s and is a sharp take on what one can do for money.
The 1958 novella by Truman Capote was adapted into the movie by Paramount Pictures in 1961, with Audrey Hepburn taking on the lead role. With her signature hairdo and style, she turned Holly into one of cinema’s most memorable characters.
Here some chick lit authors reveal whether they preferred the book or film version of Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
Scarlett Bailey, author of The Night Before Christmas:
For me, if I have to choose between the two then it’s the film over the book. Not because I don’t love the book, but because I am an old romantic and although my head appreciated what an amazing novel Capote wrote, my heart wants that happy ending for Holly, and the warmth and romance that Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard bring to what otherwise is a much colder crueler, if brilliant book. The moment that George and Audrey kiss in the rain at the end of the movie makes it one of cinema’s all-time greatest scenes. I don’t think Capote liked the adaptation of his book too much but I loved it.
Julie Cohen, author of Getting Away With It:
Capote’s story was much darker and more cynical than the film, much less about romantic comedy and much more about what people will do for money. The film has a magic all of its own because of Audrey Hepburn, though I do think it’s more complicated and sad underneath than many people think, about the chasm between dreams and practical reality, and about selling your true self for money.
Lotte Daley, author of Faking It:
I would choose the book anytime as I feel the movie loses the essence of the story. I have been heavily disappointed with movie adaptations of my favorite books. The book is classic and any day is better than the movie.
Carole Matthews, author of Wrapped Up in You:
I have always loved the film, Audrey Hepburn is such a style icon but, unfortunately, I think that it looks dated now. Had a living room picnic a few months ago and settled down to watch it again for the first time in a while. I was so excited and yet I felt quite disappointed. The clothes and the look of the film are still beautiful, but the characterisation is quite irritating. The book, however, is a classic. This reminds me to go and read it again!
Nicky Wells, author of Sophie’s Turn:
I will vote for the movie, simply because I saw the movie before I knew about the book. And thus I am totally biased. The movie has great actors. Well, it’s iconic, what can I say?
Swati Sharmi is the editor and writer of coffee table book Youth Icons of Rajasthan. She is a freelance writer and blogger from Delhi in India who is working on her first novel.