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Books into Movies: What's the Value in That?

Book into Movie: What's the Value in That?

“Never judge a book by its movie”
-J.W. Eagan
Summertime and the multiplex is booming. ‘Tis the season for sequels and movies based on comic books, and sequels of movies based on comic books. Now as much as the “Transformers” (based on a toy line and cartoon series) or “Pirates of the Caribbean” (based on a theme park ride) franchises may require third and fourth films, respectively, for a certain demographic of audience, there are those of us looking for something a little … heartier. Fortunately there are some very big film projects on their way based on actual novels.
But first, it’s worth asking: is that even a good thing?
Isn’t the Book Always Better?
Yes, yes it is, some of us would argue so vehemently that we are happy to skip the film versions of our favourite books entirely. There are those books we hope they’ll never put on screen: J.D. Salinger’s “The Catcher in the Rye” for instance. And indeed there are those novels that have been put made into movies much to the dismay of many a loyal reader (the recent film version of the much-beloved cult-classic science fiction comedy “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” comes to mind). As well, fans of Alice Sebold’s “The Lovely Bones” weren’t exactly Facebooking their love of the 2009 movie, nor did they much go to see it (it didn’t break even, apparently).
Even if the book is better ...

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