Chatty Cathys

Talk Amongst Yourselves: Moviebooks

Next week the movie adaptation of Beautiful Creatures comes out and I am super excited. The other weekend I watched The Perks of Being a Wallflower at the college where I work’s theater. I’ve gone to midnight showings of both New Moon, Eclipse, and HP6 (I know, nothing to brag about). I would have given a third of my paycheck to the theater to see Hunger Games multiple times had my wallet told me to sit the f down and wait for it to come out on DVD. Almost daily we hear talks of this book being made into a movie, that book being made into a TV show.

Needless to say, it seems YA books are a hot ticket item when it comes to Hollywood and, as a YA book lover, I couldn’t be more thrilled.

Except for arch nemesis Selena Gomez being in The Sky is Everywhere. That is not cool Hollywood.

Today’s discussion is a two-parter: Do we get excited over movies because they’re based on books we love or do we get excited over books because they’re being made into a movie?

Movie Excitement

I’m not going to lie: whenever I hear a favorite book of mine is being made into a movie my initial thought is HUZZAH! followed by shallow breaths and racing heartbeat because how can Hollywood REALLY capture all the beauty of this thing I love? How can they capture the feelings, the emotions, the suspense and inner turmoil of these characters who I have not just invested time and love in, but have become emotionally (sometimes a little too much) attached to?

Then there’s casting. Don’t get me started on that. Sure, sometimes it’s spot on. Sometimes it’s nowhere NEAR what I pictured and that’s nearly always a letdown.

But, after time, I calm down and let myself get excited. I watch trailers like they’re going out of style, dissecting them until I can tell you exactly what happens in every scene and WHY it’s important to the movie and book. I’m that kind of nerd about it. I start telling everyone “You have to see this movie because the book is FANTASTIC!” Which clearly means the movie should be. (snortlaugh)

Despite the gamut of emotions I run through whenever movies are made from books I love, I sometimes think that maaaaaybe it’s gone a little too far. That maaaaaaybe Hollywood needs to come up with their own ideas instead of forcing us book lovers to see our favorite books come to life on screen and potentially being disappointed. However, this leads me to my next part.

Book Excitement

Do we get excited over books because a movie is being made (or has been made) based on it. Hell yes we do! I dare you to look up the book sales for Twilight right after the movie came out. Go ahead. Look it up. (I’m really too lazy to do it)

Some of my favorite books and series have been discovered thanks to being turned into movies. I probably would have never read Perks of Being a Wallflower had I not heard about it being made into a movie. Hunger Games? Yeah, I don’t know if I would have read them as soon as I did if I hadn’t gotten wind the movie was being made. And Harry Potter wouldn’t have even been considered if I hadn’t seen the movies.

But do we get excited over these books JUST because of the movie? That I don’t know. What I do know is that because movies are made from books those books get read. People who may not have ever heard of the book or considered it before might be drawn to read the book because the movie is coming out.

For example: Beautiful Creatures. I knew OF the book, but hadn’t felt a pull to read it. When I saw the trailer I first thought what is this WTFery (my new favorite term from Jamie over at The Perpetual Page-Turner). But after watching the 2nd trailer, I got a little interested. Maybe it wasn’t as bad as I thought. Which led me to get excited about reading the book, to see what it was all about.

Second example: Twilight. When I first read the synopsis of the books (on Wikipedia) I thought who the f would read this shizz? Months later, I watched the movie – it was a Friday night, nothing was on TV, and they had it on PPV. And it was good. Not great, but it entertained me. Then I got excited to read the book. Like maaaaaybe it wouldn’t be so bad. And guys, I read that book for 7 straight hours, only stopping to pee. I finished at 11ish that night and had to physically stop myself from running out to buy New Moon.

So yeah, it’s really no secret that movies make us excited over books or that books make us excited over movies. I want to know what you think though. Do you read the books just because the movie has come out? Do you see the movie just because you enjoyed the book? What are some of your favorite books to movies or movies that inspired to you read the books? How do you feel about all the new movies and TV shows that are soon to come out/being made that are based on some of our favorite books?

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5 thoughts on “Talk Amongst Yourselves: Moviebooks”

  1. I definitely read Twilight only after watching the first movie on a whim. And I read Beautiful Creatures after hearing about the movie (though I don’t think I’d even seen a trailer… I just heard it was the next big movie and thought I’d give it a try). And I’m pretty sure I’ve read other books based on there being a movie made based on them, just can’t think of specific examples. But my real problem is I just hear about a book being made into a movie, so I read the book without really knowing what I’m getting into. I buy into the hype, I guess!

    On the reverse side, I loved the HP books so hard I had to watch the movies, same with Hunger Games, and same with the Stephanie Plum movie (which was lame, but I enjoyed because of the book). I am not a big movie-goer, but book movies are often the movies I make a point of seeing in the theaters!

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  2. Love this topic. Generally speaking I’m a reader first, movie-goer second. Most of the time I want to see the movie BECAUSE of the book. Read the Twilight and HP series first. Same with Hunger Games. I have to say I am on the fence abut Beautiful Creatures. The book didn’t blow me away, although there were parts I loved. And the movie, well, it looks interesting, but it’s that star studded cast that really grabs me: Jeremy Irons, Emma Thompson and Emmy Rossum (as Ridley no less, who is my fave character in the book!) So I will probably end up seeing the film for that reason alone.

    Here is one I just finished (like last night!): Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion. Not YA (and a big controversy about that) but the film is being marketed to a YA crowd. It also has a great cast: John Malkovich for one. Anyway, I LOVED this book (and I am NOT a Zombie-type reader) so I cannot wait to see the film and see how it translates to the big screen

    Great discussion!

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  3. I rarely ever see movies that are made from books. I’ve seen the really big ones like HP and Twilight, but otherwise I stay away. I know they won’t meet my expectations and I’ll complain the whole time about what was wrong/different, and I’d rather not put myself through that. That being said, when a book is being made into a movie, I do get excited about the book. Take Beautiful Creatures as an example. I’ve never read that book, but after seeing the trailer, I definitely want to. Will I see the movie? Probably not.

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  4. I love when books are being made into movies. I have read so many books and discovered so many authors because the book is going to be made into a movie. Then I fall in love with the author and read all their books even if they aren’t being made into movies.

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  5. This is an interesting post. For me, personally, I’m usually all, oh my favorite book is being turned into a movie and I HAVE SEE IT the day it opens. Once in a while, I will see a movie, and think, oh I should read the book. But that doesn’t happen too often. That might be because I’m a librarian, and I am so familiar with the books (whether or not I’ve actually read them). But sometimes a movie brings to my attention a book. For example, when I first saw the trailer ot Beastly, I had never heard of the books. Of course, I went right out and got myself a copy to read. (Actually, I only got up to get my kindle, so I could download it because it was, you know, 11 at night and no book stores were open).

    But, in terms of other people, definitely the movie brings tons of attention to the book. And I say, heck yeah! Although, I’m with you too, about sometimes wanting Hollywood to come up with their own ideas.

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