“Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret” is becoming a movie and our sixth grade selves are clutching our Lisa Frank stickers and the Silly Bandz coiled around our wrists in joyous celebration.
The endearingly raw young adult novel was released in an age when the concept of accumulating a certain amount of likes on Instagram was nonexistent and one was unable to see what their crush from science class posted on Snapchat last Thursday night, yet the lessons and values that “Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret” imparts are timeless and eternally applicable to teen girls.
Judy Blume’s superhero in Margaret Simon, the curious pre-teen that earnestly ponders real issues in her classroom and sprawls out on her bedroom rug with her girlfriends, is one that is deeply and unequivocally relatable to anyone that is exploring and learning about their sense of self.
Despite the incessant global lauding of her book, Blume has shied away from taking the book to the next level, portraying Margaret Simon’s story on the big screen…until now.
Judy Blume has given the covetable movie rights to the James L. Brooks and Kelly Fremon Craig, who worked together on “The Edge of Seventeen”, another film that explored teenage self-discovery, romance and (obviously) raging emotions.
Fremon Craig spoke to Deadline about the exciting partnership, calling the novel a “right of passage for women and girls.” She adds, “It’s rare for me to run into a woman or girl who hasn’t read it and every time I’ve mentioned it to a woman, they clutch their heart and let out this joyful gasp. There’s something so timely and full of truth and I remember for me that at that age, it felt like a life raft at a time when you’re lost and searching and unsure. This book comes along and tells you you’re not alone. Women remember where they were when they read it. I can’t think of another book you can say that about.”
The novel had been widely regarded as a tome for middle-schoolers grappling with issues of self-discovery and emotional awareness. Judy Blume’s novel dissects and candidly explores a wide range of topics that cross the minds of adolescents, normalizing healthy discussion of concepts that once seemed taboo to pre-teen girls, such as sexuality, religion, and their ever-changing bodies.
A release date has not yet been announced for the film, but whenever it is, we are eagerly awaiting this coming-of-age movie.
Tamar Skydell is an intern at The Forward. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org