(Just kidding, it is.)
For the TCWT blog chain, the prompt is:
“What are your thoughts on book-to-movie adaptions? Would you one day want your book made into a movie, or probably not?”
I like this topic, because it’s very broad and I can go in almost any direction I want, providing it’s not to the right. There’s a giant needle sticking out of the wall on my right side, and I’m trying to avoid it. Anywho…
Life is rough for book-to-movie adaptations. Not only must they be able to stand on their own two feet as a movie—a completely different type of entertainment than a book— but they also have to put up with all the die-hard book purists that throw a fit over every minor change.
(Note: I am occasionally one of those diehard book purists. Example: The Shining.)
I think we need to stop being so hard on these, poor, misunderstood movies. Directing an adaptation is like being forced to walk on a tightrope above Niagara Falls*, except on one side of the rope, there’s a bunch of crazy book-readers shouting “YOU’VE RUINED THE WHOLE SERIES!” and on the other side there’s a bunch of snobby movie critics saying things like, “I feel like this movie caters way too much to the fans of the book, to the point where it doesn’t stand on its own as a movie. Also, not enough symbolism, and the juxtaposition between motifs was a bit clumsily done. 2/5 stars.” And if the book in question is a young adult novel, then the critics will undoubtedly compare it to Twilight or Harry Potter, no matter what it’s about.
It’s a lot like basing a movie off a cartoon from the nineties, except with those you have people complaining “YOU’VE RUINED MY CHILDHOOD!” because as it turns out, it’s possible to destroy someone’s entire childhood simply by making a bad movie based off a show they used to like. Who knew?
I think people need to remember that a movie is completely different from a novel, and that some things that would work well in a book would look terrible in a movie. For example, Daenerys Targaryen is only thirteen when the first book of A Song of Ice and Fire started. Things would not have gone well if the producers behind Game of Thrones hired a girl who was actually thirteen to play her.
With many adaptations though, it can be frustrating, because some books have so much potential to be great, but the people producing it are clearly out to get you, and are intentionally making it terrible just to piss you off, so it seems. Why can’t they let me write the scripts for all the adaptations I’m interested in? It’s so unfair.
That being said, if some sketchy looking guy with a sketchy looking suit and tie came up to me and asked my permission to make a movie off of my novel, I’d probably say yes, because a movie is basically just one big advertisement for your book. If a trailer looks good, all the book-snobs watching it will think to themselves, “Quick, I need to read the book before this comes out. This way I could complain about how disappointing the movie is.”
Even better would be a book-to-TV adaptation, like Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead. Speaking of which, HBO really needs to write a mini-series for The Stand, by Stephen King. Just saying, I think it’d work out well.
Sorry if this post is a bit scattered.
Now click on the links below for the rest of the blog chain!
20th – http://miriamjoywrites.com/
28th – https://teenscanwritetoo.wordpress.com/ – The topic for July’s blog chain will be announced.
*I saw a guy do this once. It was amazing.