Upcoming Book to Screen Adaptations.
Posted on April 11, 2022
These past few years in film and television we have seen an abundance of adaptations hit movie theaters and streaming sites alike. From video game adaptations such as Uncharted, to novel adaptations such as Normal People or Dune. There seems to have been a rise in interest for adapted stories. While I would argue that not all adaptations are for the stories’ best interest, it is hard to deny the intrigue surrounding how filmmakers take the words of others and turn them into a visual medium. Taking a story that was written for one medium and translating it into a film or television show is no small feat. And often comes with a lot of backlash. But if done correctly, can bring huge successes. For instance, many of the films featured at this year’s Oscars were adapted films; The Power of the Dog, West Side Story, and Dune. The next couple years will be filled with many more, and there are a few in particular that I am looking forward to seeing how the creators will approach.
Where The Crawdads Sing
For starters, Where The Crawdads Sing is a novel by Delia Owens that was published in 2018. It was widely successful and is one of the many BookTok must reads. The story follows Kya, a young girl who is abandoned by her family at a very young age. Forced to learn to survive in isolation. That is until her life becomes entangled with two boys who venture into the marsh and give Kya a glimpse into the world outside of what she has always known.
This novel has been recently adapted into a film starring Normal People actress Daisy Edgar-Jones. With director Olivia Newman and is produced by Reese Witherspoon and Lauren Neustadter. The film is set to come out in 2022 and will feature an original song by Taylor Swift, of which a snippet can be heard in the film trailer. From this trailer, it is already apparent that the film will feature beautiful cinematography and landscapes. Which will be vital to the heart of the story to keep true to the way in which the marsh was a character of its own in the novel.
Watch the trailer here: WHERE THE CRAWDADS SING – Official Trailer (HD)
Another adaptation set to hit the big screen in 2022 is My Policeman. Based on the novel by Bethan Roberts published in 2012. The film takes place in 1950’s England and follows the complex relationship between three individuals. The novel unfolds from the perspective of two different characters with the same individual at the center of their lives. This romance novel is a beautiful look into the complexities of human relationships.
The adaptation directed by Michael Grandage will star musician Harry Styles, along with Emma Corrin and David Dawson. There is yet to be a trailer for this film but with a few leaked set photos that have surfaced online, it seems that this film will stay true to the 1950s England aesthetic that drove the narrative in the novel. Much of the conversation around this film has been due to the lead role Harry Styles will be taking on, but what I look forward too is seeing the complexities of these three characters being portrayed through the screen.
Conversations With Friends
The last adaptation I will talk about is the novel to television adaptation of Conversations With Friends. The story follows two college students as they become entangled in the lives of an older married couple. Entranced by their lifestyle and drawn to one another the relationship between the girls and the couple becomes a complex look into desire, attraction and human relationships.
This story is being adapted into a television series set to hit Hulu in 2022 with 12 half hour episodes. The show will star Alison Oliver, Joe Alwyn, Jemima Kirke and Sasha Lane. A teaser clip for the series has already been released and it looks as though the show will be following in the footsteps of Salley Rooney’s last adaptation which was successful, Normal People. With a character based story I look forward to viewing how these four actors will portray the complexities between these characters on screen.
In each of these adaptations I hope that the creators will stay true to the heart of the novels, and I look forward to seeing what creative approach they will take in translating these narratives. Book to screen adaptations are commonly criticized, and when watching adaptations to novels I love, I have always tried to separate the novel from the adaptation and look at the adaptation as its own story. With the characters I love, but reimagined to be watched rather than visualized.