Whit Stillman Writing Jane Austen-Inspired Novel

“Love & Friendship” finds “Metropolitan” director trying his hand at a marriage plot

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Whit Stillman, the preeminent cinematic chronicler of the urban haute bourgeoisie, is bringing his talent for champagne-inflected dialogue back to the printed page.

The “Metropolitan” and “Barcelona” writer and director will  publish a new novel with a multi-claused title,  “Love & Friendship: An Adaptation of Jane Austen’s Unfinished Novella Concerning the Beautiful Lady Susan Vernon, Her Loves and Friendships, and the Strange Antagonism of the DeCourcy Family.” The announcement Tuesday came from his publisher,  Little, Brown and Company.

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Stillman’s novel is inspired by a short work never published in Austen’s lifetime that follows a great beauty, Lady Susan Vernon, who must find a husband after being widowed.

The indie icon previously published a novelization of his 1998 film “The Last Days of Disco,” called “The Last Days of Disco, with Cocktails at Petrossian Afterwards.”

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Stillman’s most recent film, “Damsels in Distress,” premiered in 2012, ending a long hiatus.