If you’ve read the A Wrinkle in Time book and have now seen the Disney movie adaptation of the Madeleine L’Engle novel, then you know two characters are missing from the film: Sandy and Dennys, Meg Murry’s 10-year-old twin brothers who become very important in the Time Quintet novel Many Waters.
So… what happened to poor Sandy and Dennys? Den of Geek had a chance to ask screenwriter Jennifer Lee about the decision to cut them from the movie during a press event in Los Angeles. She told us that they were one of the first aspects of the book to be removed from the script, as they were unnecessary to telling Meg’s story in A Wrinkle in Time.
“There’s so much story to tell,” Lee said. “There were all these clever ways to put the twins in just to include them. And I’m like, why? We’re doing it for … we don’t want to do it for the wrong reasons. And it was one of those things that every time we would revisit maybe bringing them, everyone would agree.”
Of course, given that Sandy and Dennys are the protagonists of Many Waters, their erasure from A Wrinkle in Time could potentally become a problem should Disney decide to movie forward with adapting more books in L’Engle’s Time Quintet.
“I couldn’t think ahead to what might come after this or to the other books in the series,” said Lee. “I could only think to this story. I think I’d have done it a disservice if I projected things onto it that didn’t need to be there.”
While Lee and director Ava DuVernay came to this decision, it doesn’t mean the subject wasn’t ever debated. Lee spoke about the process of trying to figure out how the twins might be mentioned, but not active in the story, saying…
Do we say they’re away at school? And then just saying, you know, we are not trying to do the book. When we do those little things, I think it’s us feeling forced to do the book. And then we’re saying, but wait, we all said it’s about the spirit of the book, the feeling of the book, the journey. And that’s what’s important. And if we try to literally stay to the book we’re not going to succeed. It’s not fair. So the twins were one of the first to go.
I wouldn’t worry too much. A lot is possible in the world of A Wrinkle in Time and, as Lee noted, “there’s magical ways children show up.” We wouldn’t count Sandy and Dennys out just yet.