Children’s Books into Film
There seems to be a plethora of recent movies that originated as children’s books. Which ones were tops? Which were flops?
Children’s Picture Book Classic
Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are is arguably one of the most popular picture books of all time. When I heard they were turning it into a movie, my first thought was “Why?” My second thought was “How?”
There are less than 400 words in the text of this book, and I couldn’t imagine bringing the wild things to life. Then I read that it had already been turned into a successful opera and ballet, and I eventually became interested in seeing the movie. It currently rates a 7.4 out of 10 on IMDB, so it appears to be a success.
The latest in a series of adaptations of Roald Dahl books is Fantastic Mr. Fox. Said Mr. Fox is voiced by George Clooney. There are also a couple film versions of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, as well as film versions of Matilda, The Witches, James and the Giant Peach, BFG, and even Danny the Champion of the World, which was news to me. A film version of The Twits is in the works, according to IMDB.
Bridge to Terabithia
Another fiction classic to recent film was Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson. Ms. Paterson’s son David co-wrote the screenplay, and it was also fairly well reviewed.
Other Recent Films that Began as Books
Alice in Wonderland, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, How to Train your Dragon, Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, Inkheart, and Coraline. Not to mention all the Harry Potter films.
Vote for Your Favorite
Which recent film(s) do you think did the book justice? Which ones in your mind didn’t cut the mustard? Leave your votes in the comments section.
DeAnn O. has been a children’s librarian for 15 years; she is a long time bibliophile and children’s advocate. She is also a mom to a very active 2 year old who loves books and knows what she likes.