• Maria P Frino

Film Adaptations - Your Book as a Movie

I would love to see my science fiction drama - Xenure Station Trilogy adapted as a movie if only to see how the futuristic sets would look. Also, to see who plays the two power couples and the villain, The High Priest Enforcer. I guess I can dream...



This is every author's dream. To have their story made into a movie. Is this a good idea?

Not always. Have you heard viewers' lamenting - "The book was better" or "Books are always better"?


Having your book made into a movie, ie a film adaptation of your story, can be a great boost to your ego, but the translation from book to the script doesn't always work.


According to Rotten Tomatoes, a website that measures the quality of movies and TV, some of the best books have translated into bad movies. There are a number of reasons why this happens and when it comes to a series, the first installment may do well, but the subsequent ones don't deliver.


Here are some examples of bad adaptations according to Rotten Tomatoes - these may have been popular with fans but overall failed to live up to the book.

  • The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

  • The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

  • The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

  • Love, Rosie by Cecelia Ahern

  • The Mortal Instruments: City Of Bones by Cassandra Clare


I don't necessarily agree with these examples, especially The Book Thief. I enjoyed both the book and the movie. However, one opinion does not make a difference when it comes to popularity.


There have also been many movies made that weren't great but they garnered a cult following. One that comes to mind is Pulp Fiction starring John Travolta, Samuel L Jackson, and Uma Thurman. Directed by Quentin Tarantino, this movie became a financial success and rebooted John Travolta's career.


Some other movies that critics panned but became popular are -

  • Fight Club starring Brad Pitt

  • Blade Runner starring Harrison Ford

  • The Rocky Horror Picture Show starring Tim Curry and Susan Sarandon. (The late Meatloaf was also in this movie. It wasn't a hit until it was shown at midnight in many cinemas and this is when it received cult status.)

  • The Big Lebowski starring Jeff Bridges

For many authors having their books adapted into movies is a pipe dream and maybe this is a good thing. Another reason why your book may never become a movie is money. A lot of money is needed to produce movies and spare money is something many authors don't have.


Do you have a favourite book that was made into a movie and you didn't enjoy it? Add to these lists in the comments.


Happy reading

Maria P Frino


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