Before we get down to the business of answers and all things Thorn Birds, I have to squee at the honor bestowed on the Vortex for being named someone's favorite. Granted, she has winner's guilt over a 2007 impasse of epic writerly proportions, which could account for some of the love. Nevertheless, I'll display the avatar proudly. Thanks, Marilyn.
Sadly, no one answered all the true/false questions correctly, so watch for more freebies in the coming weeks. Ask me if I can resist rummaging around a discount bin to score time travel movies or books. Go ahead, ask.
Now for the answers to The Thorn Birds trivia:
1. Colleen McCullough hated the ABC miniseries adaptation of her international bestselling novel (t/f). True. According to executive producer, David L. Wolper, the author revealed her dissatisfaction in several interviews with Australian newspapers.
2. The original week the miniseries aired in 1983, a major airline aired episodes during its evening flights so no passengers missed any portion of the ten hour saga (t/f). True.
3. The McDonald's corporation was the number one advertiser during the miniseries (t/f). False. In fact, McDonalds was so dissuaded by the religious controversy surrounding the miniseries, they refused to purchase any ad time. Later, they amended their position to only purchase ad time before the relationship between Father Ralph and Meggie was consummated.
4. Rachel Ward beat out actress Jane Seymour to portray Meggie Cleary because she had a more authentic Australian accent(t/f). False. Rachel Ward did beat out Jane Seymour for Meggie's part, but not because of the accent. Casting believed Jane Seymour to be too strong an actress to portray the innocence needed for Meggie.
5. Amongst the many technical flaws in the film, cars are seen driving on the right side of the road instead of the left, as is the norm in Australia(t/f). True.
6. The antique church robes used for Father Ralph's wardrobe came from a former priest who'd been excommunicated from the church(t/f). True.
7. Bryan Brown, the actor who portrayed Meggie's husband Luke O'Neill, and Rachel Ward fell in love on the set and remain married to this day(t/f). True.
8. The "ashes of roses" dress Meggie Cleary wore at her coming out party was lost in the men's bathroom at LAX during filming(t/f). True. While shipping off cast and crew to film in Hawaii, a studio assistant left the dress in the men's room at the airport. A mexican soldier found it, saw the studio's address in Burbank and returned it. The dress arrived in Hawaii minutes before the previous post's publicity photo on the beach was taken.
9. The sugar cane fields and beach scenes were filmed in Hawaii(t/f). True.
10. Christopher Plummer won a Best Supporting Actor Emmy for his portrayal of Archbishop Vitorrio(t/f). False. He was only nominated.
Last tidbit of trivia about the final scene in the miniseries: In the book, Father Ralph dies in the house with Fee present. The Thorn Bird's screenwriter, Carmen Culver, envisioned the rose garden as the perfect place to end the saga. In such a harsh land, she believed, the garden became a metaphor for heaven.
This week: literature maps, false heads and a ceremonial burial of my biggest crutch word. Bring yours and we'll bury it together.