Invented Incidents in Educating Rita, a Play by Willy Russell

The Additional Scenes in Educating Rita’s Film Version

Educating Rita is a stage comedy written by British playwright Willy Russell. The play is adapted for radio by Willy Russell. It is assumed that the radio play substantially copies the original text. The play is also adapted for a film. The events take place both in the play and in the film. In the play, everything is told in reported speech, however; in the film, people can see the events that happen more elaborately.

Although the film script includes nearly all the scenes from the play, there is a certain amount of new additional scenes which are created only for the film. This essay examines invented incidents in the film such as Denny’s demolishing the wall and wedding ceremony, an invented character called Brian, and the final scene of the film at the airport. Also, this essay tries to answer the question of what does the film add anything different or improved to the original play.

To begin with, in the film, we see Denny knocks the wall down with a hammer. At that time, Rita comes home. This is completely a new situation that does not exist in the play. His demolishing the wall is a scene that is created entirely for the film. As opposed to the play, the film includes unnecessary details and newly created scenes which do not even fit in with the rest. To illustrate, Denny asks her when she will stop taking pills and she immediately takes another pill from the place that she hides.

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Whereas, there is not such a thing in the play. She just tells Frank that Denny does not want her to get an education. Finally, Rita goes upstairs to finish her essay in such a noisy atmosphere. When she realizes she cannot do anything, she agrees to go with Denny to the bistro. In the end, she takes the hammer in her hands and tries to break the wall down. Then, Denny and Rita hug and kiss each other. It is meaningless to add such a scene that does not even enrich the film in any way. As a consequence, most probably, the reason why Will Russel agrees to include such a scene in the script is probably the producer of the film says so.

Demolishing the wall is completely ridiculous and irrelevant when it is compared with the rest of the play. It does not add anything different or improved to the original play. Also, this added wall scene and dialogues between husband and wife never approach anything realistic.

Secondly, Rita’s sister’s wedding ceremony in the church is a scene that is completely invented for the film. Rita does not tell anything about this wedding scene to Frank in the play.

After the ceremony, they take some pictures outside the church. In the meantime, Rita’s father begins to talk pointlessly and outrageously with her daughter. Rita’s father asks her why she is not pregnant yet. Her father continues to reproach her about this subject in front of her husband. He compares Rita with her sister who is pregnant for 4 months even though she is married just now. The conversation between them comes to an end when he says to Denny; “I am sorry for you young man if she was my wife, I would drown her.” Generally, talking about grandchildren and pregnancy would be much better and appropriate for the mother. If her mother was the person who has said all of these things, this scene would be rather realistic and fit in the real life. As a consequence, perhaps the film contains these new scenes to make it more popular and interesting for the people who are going to watch it. Maybe Willy Russell does not want to add these new incidents but the producer of the film can tell him that you have to do this and add some popular elements to attract the audience’s attention.

Finally, another thing that is exclusively created for the film is a character named Brian and the final scene at the airport. Both the character Brian and the closing scene do not exist in the play in any form either by reported speech or any other words by Rita. Brian who is a colleague of Frank at the university has a secret affair with Frank’s girlfriend, Julia in the film.

As soon as Frank comes to his house, he pretends as if he is talking to his publisher. This scene is repeated a couple of times in the course of the film. Frank elicits that he is aware of their relationship by indicating the phone has been cut off. The play only featured two characters, Frank, Ritand a. It is appropriate and reasonable for the play to have only 2 characters, on the other hand; this will not work in the film. For this reason, there are several added characters and new incidents whi found in the film. The audience also needs to see the atmosphere, and some other locations except for Frank’s office and several actors and actresses. Otherwise, it will be boring for people to watch the film. The last point to look at in the film is the closing scene.

Again, in the play, there is nothing told either by Rita or Frank. As opposed to the play, Rita goes to the airport to bid her farewell to Frank at the end. Furthermore, Frank asks her to come to Australia with him. However, there is nono certain information in the play about ether he will go Auto Australia or he will keep on his life the way it is before he hat with Rita. Hence, the film gives the audience a precise ending. In contrast, everything is left to the imagination of the audience in the play. Rather than seeing this needless final airport scene, imagining the scene makes the play more effective. Will Russel makes a statement in which he explains the reasons for including new scenes. He says; ” “I wanted to make a film which engaged and was relevant to those who considered themselves uneducated, those whose daily language is not the language of the university or the theatre. I wanted to write a film which would attract and be as valid for, the Rita’s in the audience as the Frank’s.” Newly added scenes do not fit in with the rest of the film and do not improve the film properly. Still, they probably have to include them in the film’s script.

Otherwise, uneducated people will not go to see the film unless they see some low-level stuff. These invented incidents are just like dirty jokes for groundlings. We can see this kind of thing in Macbeth in porter’s scene. The porter makes silly and dirty jokes to attract the attention of uneducated people or groundlings who come to watch the play. It can be said that the same thing works in this film.

Taking everything into consideration, Educating Rita’s film version includes all the scenes from the play but in doing so the film includes entirely different and invented scenes, characters, and dialogues that are not in the original play. The play tries to appeal to reasonably educated people. Conversely, the film tries to appeal to both educated and uneducated people. There is a need to lower the level of the film for uneducated people so that they can come to watch the film. These additional and ridiculous scenes such as demolishing the wall, the wedding ceremony, the added character Brian and the final scene of the film, destroy the original concept of the play and bring the whole concept to a lower level.

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Invented Incidents in Educating Rita, a Play by Willy Russell. (2022, Aug 06). Retrieved from

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