Experiencing the magic of seeing pages transcend onto the big screen is one of my greatest joys as a reader.
Here are a few titles to look out for.
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
This novel is about a sixteen-year-old boy named Jacob who witnesses his grandfather’s murder at the hands of a mysterious creature. Of course, no one believes Jacob, and he soon begins to have nightmares. During a visit to the orphanage his grandfather grew up in, Jacob discovers old photographs that suggest a mysterious secret is lurking behind the walls of the home.
According to ComingSoon, the movie adaptation is set to release on March 4, 2016 with Asa Butterfield as the lead. Filming began earlier this year with Tim Burton as director. Other cast members include: Eva Green, Samuel L. Jackson, Allison Janney, Chris O’Dowd, Ella Purnell, and Terence Stamp.
Personally, I cannot think of a greater director than Tim Burton for this project. His talent for portraying dark and playful themes is a perfect fit. Will he be able to stay true to the novel and embody the eeriness of Ransom Riggs work? I hope so.
The biggest challenge of this adaptation will be to appeal to a larger audience. If done correctly, Tim Burton will be able to adapt a movie franchise that could be as successful as The Hunger Games trilogy.
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a novel in possession of a good premisemmust be in want of…brain-eating zombies.
An article on LiveScience, reported that fantasies about the zombie apocalypse make up a large part of post-apocalyptic pop culture.
I believe it.
The novel will be a spin on Jane Austen’s, Pride and Prejudice, and set in an alternate reality. Elizabeth and her sisters are zombie-fighting warriors while Mr.Darcy, is a famous zombie hunter. The premise to this story remains true to Austen’s work, however, there is more action and brutal twists to the original plot.
Being a Pride and Prejudice fan, I am interested in this dark tone of the interpretation….and skeptical. Will it flop like Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (which was also written by Smith)? Or will it surprise us like Warm Bodies (another zombie book to movie adaptation)?
Pride and Prejudice is a novel that has stood the test of time, so the original premise to be kept alive. If the zombies compromise the overall message of the story, I’m afraid things will go South quickly.
Based on this trailer, it seems like the story will focus on the effect zombies have had on societal life, which could be an interesting turn.
Allegiant by Veronica Roth
It’s been a while since I finished the last installment of the Divergent Series, but the second movie left me feeling like I had been reading a different book. As movie blogger, TheMovieGuru, said “the film’s choppy structure and tediousness prevents it from ever doing anything interesting.”
This story is about a sixteen-year-old girl, Tris Prior, who lives in a futuristic Chicago, divided into factions based on virtues. Tris, who does not fit into any faction (divergent), is then forced to pick a faction and face the dangers that come with being divergent. In the last installment, Allegiant, we see Tris Prior stepping across the wall that surrounds Chicago, finding out what lies ahead, and exactly what it means to be divergent.
One major flaw is that the creators have decided to split the novel into two movies. Despite the thickness of the novel, the book does not have enough content to be split into two movies.
I will definitely have to check out this last installment. Who knows? It might surprise us all.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by J.K. Rowling
Will I ever get enough of the Harry Potter world?
When the film was first announced, I couldn’t help but think it was a dire mistake. How could this film compete with the original franchise?
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is a fictional textbook written by magizoologist, Newt Scamander. This textbook is first mentioned in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone when Harry takes a look at the list of required materials for first-year students. The textbook offers descriptions about different magical beasts, their environment, and whether or not they are dangerous. The reading also includes a forward by Albus Dumbledore, information about the author, and subsections titled: What is a Beast?, A Brief History of Muggle Awareness of Fantastic Beasts, Magical Beasts in Hiding, and Why Magizoology Matters.
So, how is this becoming a movie?
I have no idea, but I’m excited to find out.
According to YouTube channel, Clevver Movies, the movie is set to be released on November 18, 2016 with Oscar-winner Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander. The film is being directed by David Yates and the screenplay has been written by our very own J.K. Rowling. Interestingly enough, this will be the first installment in three movies and will include noted actors: Colin Farrell, Samantha Morton, Jon Voight, Ezra Miller, Ron Perlman, and Katherine Waterston.
When interviewed by Entertainment Weekly, David Yates told reporters that Fantastic Beasts would most likely resemble Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Since this is my favorite of the Harry Potter movies, I just about swooned.
As long as the script and visual effects to par, I suspect we can expect great things from Fantastic Beasts.
The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
This series is about an 18-year-old girl named Clary Fray who lives with her mother, Jocelyn Fairchild, in New York. One night, she and her best friend decide to visit a popular night club, where she witnesses a young man killing another attendee. Unbeknownst to Clary, the young man belongs to a race of half-human/half-angel warriors that fight demons threatening the human world. The attendee is actually a demon in disguise, and no one but Clary can see these angel-human warriors. Clary begins to think she’s going crazy, but when her mother goes missing, she reaches out to the warriors to find her mother. Clary then begins to realize that there’s a reason she can see the warriors and she might hold the key to her mother’s disappearance
Blogger, TheM0vieBlog, offered a great summary saying “The only real problems with The Mortal Instruments become obvious when the movie slows down and starts playing into the teenage fantasy tropes with earnestness rather than self-awareness.”
Still, there was hope, and earlier this year, ABC Family announced they were picking up a TV show based on the novels. The series was renamed Shadowhunters and recast.
The biggest obstacle I see in the tv series is the script. How do you make angel-human warriors appealing and sound mature? That’s a tough one.
In reality, I think the companion series, The Infernal Devices, would be a bigger hit. It’s set in the same Shadowhunter universe but takes place in the 1800’s. The magic gives the novel a steampunk feel and the characters are much more lovable and complex. It would also add maturity to the script, given the language used in Victorian London.
ABC Family’s Youtube channel recently released two previews of the series. Check them out and judge for yourself. Will we be tuning it?
The show will premiere on January 12, 2016 and I do hope it gets enough viewers to help the show progress. Perhaps we might also see The Infernal Devices adapted. Fingers crossed.
So far, 2016 holds some promising book to movie releases. I can only hope we see these titles provide entertainment and gather even more fans/readers around the world.