Small, smart, redheaded, scrappy, and imaginative, Anne Shirley has been winning hearts and minds ever since Canadian author Lucy Maud Montgomery introduced her to the world in 1908. The character was so immediately popular that Montgomery penned seven sequels to Anne of Green Gables over three decades. Anne has kept the tourism industry in her home of Prince Edward Island booming, particularly among Japanese fans. Anne is big in Japan thanks, in some part, to a 1979 anime version of Anne of Green Gables. In fact, Anne has inspired a number of films, TV shows, and stage productions.
Her writing has brought joy to millions –including me- in the 100+ years since Anne of Green Gables creation. She created a memorable, lovable character in Anne- an imaginative, spunky orphan who comes to live with an elderly brother/sister in a small, Canadian town of Avonlea. Watch Anne of Green Gables Full Movie Online Free 123Movies, 13-year-old orphan Anne Shirley is sent to live with a foster family on Canada's Prince Edward Island. With her fiery spirit and imagination, Anne eventually wins over her new guardians, domineering Marilla Cuthbert.
But outside of Japan, one adaptation in particular—the 1985 Canadian Anne of Green Gables mini-series, starring Megan Follows and directed by Kevin Sullivan—struck a nerve. At the time, the CBC production was the most popular TV program to ever air in Canada. As it was re-broadcast in the U.S. (on PBS and, later, the Disney Channel), the four-hour event and its 1987 sequel, Anne of Avonlea, became instant classics—winning Emmy and Peabody Awards, reinvigorating interest in the L.M. Montgomery novels, and inspiring a generation of women to emulate the brainy, ambitious, hot-tempered, and kind-hearted Anne.
We are now in the midst of another Anne boom. The always-popular ginger is the subject of several new film, stage, and TV adaptations, including a gritty reimagining by Breaking Bad alum Moira Walley-Beckett that was first broadcast by the CBC and will air on Netflix starting this Friday. But this new version will have to work as hard as the fictional Miss Shirley herself to win over a generation raised on the warm and cozy version. We’ve rounded up a group of writers who grew up on the 1980s version to explain why that Anne—and the gentle books she springs from—are such a hard act to follow.
LOVE AT FIRST SLATE
Anne of Green Gables is jammed full of wonderful moments that have never left me over the mumble-something years since I first read it—Diana Barry getting wasted accidentally on currant wine; Anne re-enacting The Lady of ShalottSankat mochan mount madonna. with geographically disastrous results. But none are more viscerally satisfying than when our heroine gets fed up with classmate, general dreamboat, and (spoiler!) future spouse Gilbert Blythe teasing her during lessons and cracks him over the head with her slate. I think of Anne every time a strange man on the street tells me to smile. Young women are so often taught to make boys feel comfortable, even when they’re being total assholes, and Anne just . . . doesn’t do that.
Her reaction is not half-hearted. It is not cutesy. Her rage is not cloaked in apologies for making anyone feel awkward. And she is not home to Gilbert’s apologies for a very long time. Her anger is legitimate and it is serious, and L.M. Montgomery treats it as such. (So does Gilbert, to his great credit.) Anne is allowed to reclaim her space and simmer about this. And while the image that sticks in your head is, obviously, Anne whacking Gilbert across the noggin, the message I took away from Anne of Green Gables as a kid wasn’t that I should smack people. It was that it’s O.K. to stand up for yourself when people treat you poorly, and that doing so isn’t going to make anyone who matters dislike you. That’s a powerful thought to put into a young girl’s pocket when you send her out into the world. Cat-callers, beware. — Jessica Morgan, co-founder of GoFugYourself.com and author of The Royal We
I didn’t read Anne (with an “e” of course) of Green Gables. I devoured Anne of Green Gables. At the time, I didn’t understand why Anne’s commitment to her own intelligence, kindness, and disruptive “red hair” meant so much to me. Why watching Anne sit on a bench and stare toward her beloved best friend Diana Barry’s house, crying “henceforth we must be strangers living side by side,” made my heart soar. Now I realize that she was my first heroine. Anne was a principled young women who loved her friends, and her school work, and of course Gilbert Blythe. I felt so deeply for Anne and, in turn, for myself. I credit surviving my early teen years (I was five-feet-nine at the age of 11) to Anne of Green Gables. If she could do it, then I could too. (Also . . . I’m writing this while VERY drunk on currant wine) — June Diane Raphael, writer, actress, and star of Grace and Frankie
Growing up in the 1980s South, I didn’t always know my place. My parents had raised me believing that my voice and ideas were as important as everyone else’s, even the adults’. That might be why I earned the nickname “Large Mouth Bass” from my fifth-grade teacher when I corrected her about something or another. So when I saw Anne Shirley lose her cool on Rachel Lynde after Rachel is rude as all get-out, I knew I had found a kindred spirit. How empowering to see a young woman speak the truth with passion and emotion, eventually even causing a change of heart and mind! My dad gave me a T-shirt that says “Large Mouth Bass,” and now I wear it with pride. — Lennon Parham, co-creator and star of Playing House
THE PUFFIEST OF SLEEVES
There’s so much to treasure in the CBC’s 1985 Anne of Green Gables series: for example, every time that dreamy Gilbert (Jonathan Crombie) looks at our hero Anne with love, amusement, and a proud kind of awe. But the moment that makes me tear up just thinking about it is when Anne’s elderly foster parent Matthew Cuthbert (Richard Farnsworth) gives her a light-blue dress with puffed sleeves. Anne has her famous obsessions—red-hair sensitivity; the Lady of Shalott; justice; dramatic phrases like “the depths of despair.” Puffed sleeves are another: fashionable, extravagant details on the kind of dress she’s never owned, expressing the glory and romance she dreams of, but, as a poor orphan, has never been able to have. While her foster parent Marilla (the wonderfully crabby Colleen Dewhurst) rolls her eyes at Anne’s apparent frivolousness, Matthew quietly comes to understand the important truths behind it, and he heads to the dry-goods store. But he’s still Matthew, awkward and shy; he buys a rake and several sacks of brown sugar from a pretty young clerk before working up the courage to say that he wants a dress. (“Puffed sleeves!” he whispers.)
Anne’s reaction to the dress—a lace-and-frills creation with puffs the size of hot-air balloons, which, when we see it now, at a safe remove from the 80s, threatens to steal the scene and perhaps our very souls—is one of rapture, along with shock and true love, and a tender gratitude that comes from knowing that she is finally seen, accepted, and cared for. The movie’s treatment of the scene is even more satisfying than L. M. Montgomery’s original, which sensibly incorporates the help of Rachel Lynde, the color brown (!), and waiting until Christmas morning. Here, we get to see Anne race out to the barn and embrace Matthew, while wearing the dress and possibly threatening to get it dirty, showing that the gesture is more important than the thing itself—and we can happily cry our eyes out. — Sarah Larson, roving cultural correspondent for NewYorker.com
ANNE SHIRLEY, WINNER OF THE AVERY
Anne Shirley was Hamilton long before Lin-Manuel Miranda—only without the music or Alexander’s tragedy. Like Alex, Anne wrote her way out. She wrote her way out of a life of mediocrity, she wrote her way out of Prince Edward Island (albeit briefly), and she wrote her way into the hearts of every person whose path she crossed. But unlike Hamilton, Anne never had to assume that she was the smartest in the room, because she actually was—and after realizing it, she never apologized, because why would she? As a kid watching Anne use her words and her writing to work her way through spelling bees and Avery prizes into Queen’s University, my own know-it-all tendencies seemed a little less extra.
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Hell, even as an adult, I think of Anne brazenly building her dream life and feel motivated to get back to work and stop wasting time. Plus, she stopped for no man: while childhood me swooned over the cuteness of Gilbert (obviously), my 31-year-old self loves even more that Anne never slowed down so he could keep up. Instead, dude upped his own ante to keep himself in the game—he was well aware he also had to work. — Anne T. Donahue, writer/person/bona fide Canadian
A DECENT PROPOSAL
I saw Anne of Green Gables, the mini-series, for the first time when I was 12 years old. It was as close to a religious experience as I have ever had. I was covered in freckles, with a temper to match, and I never had a heroine speak so directly to my soul. I have committed almost every frame of those movies to memory, but one of the scenes that I try to rip off as much as possible when writing romantic scenes between myself and Keegan-Michael Key in my show, Playing House, is when Gilbert proposes to Anne for the first time on that bridge in the fog. Anne is right on the brink of womanhood, as it were, and all of her friends are pairing up and settling down. Anne has always known that she is destined for a life that is bigger than what her beloved Avonlea has to offer—but she has no idea what is ahead of her, and she is mourning the fact that the beautiful life, as she has known it, is about to change. When she says to Gilbert, “I don’t want any of it to change. I wish I could just hold on to those days forever. I have a feeling things will never be the same again,” my heart would just ache and ache, because I’ve always been desperately afraid of change.
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For Anne, finding her Prince Charming is not what drives her—it’s figuring out who she truly is, and being brave in her choices and doing what scares her. But oh, when after she refuses his proposal and Gilbert looks at her, heartbroken and begs her to “please say yes” . . . I challenge you to find a hotter moment in all of olden-days history! The fog, the crickets, the pleading eyes, the bridge—absolute perfection. — Jessica St. Clair, co-creator and star of Playing House
Anne Of Avonlea
Anne Shirley is pluck personified, and deeply theatrical, which makes it impossible not to love her. (In the musical, her over-the-top sung apology to Mrs. Lynde, which makes Rachel run off sobbing with guilt, is a marvel.) But she’s also the first female heroine I can remember whose mind was considered flat-out cool. And she never downplayed that; instead, she wore it with pride, which is a tough thing to do as a kid when so many people around you are coping with puberty by spitting out the word “nerd” like a bullet. Anne could recite poetry from memory, with dramatic perfection. In the series, she got carried around and idolized by cheering students for winning the Avery scholarship. Her cleverness and honesty and impulsivity attracted people more than her carrots did—even Gilbert. So, as much as I love the sounds of Marilla’s and Miss Stacey’s laughs when Anne shrieks not to eat the mouse-infested pudding, I can also close my eyes and hear Anne performing “The Highwayman” in her poetry competition, while Gilbert gazes adoringly and admiringly at her.
Y’all, he loved her for her brain. What better message for young kids is there? — Heather Cocks, co-founder of GoFugYourself.com and author of The Royal We
FLESH AND BLOOD
Like Pollyanna, Heidi, Pippi, and a number of other only-one-name-required literary heroines before her, Anne’s sunny outlook had a way of melting hard hearts. It was a trick she would pull off again and again with the likes of Rachel Lynde, Aunt Josephine Barry, Mrs. Harris, Katherine Brooks, and more. But Anne’s greatest conquest, of course, was Marilla Cuthbert. Soft-hearted Matthew Cuthbert was an easy sell, but Anne had to sweat in order to work her way into Marilla’s good graces. Colleen Dewhurst’s take on the stern Green Gables matriarch is most often remembered for her droll commentary, her exasperated eye-rolls, and her rare, warm, crackling laugh. But her usual composure is what make her complete breakdown over the loss of her brother, Matthew, so unforgettable. “It’s never been easy for me to say the things from my heart,” Marilla confesses, telling an inconsolable Anne that she shouldn’t think Marilla doesn't love her as much as Matthew did. The lesson Anne (and Marilla) imparted to me there is that a loving bond can be forged in even the most unlikely of places. Anne’s hard-won little family shrinks from three to two—but is all the stronger for it. — Joanna Robinson, senior writer for VanityFair.com