Monday, February 27, 2012

Adapted to Film

I am sitting here, watching On the Red Carpet, waiting for the big night. I LOVE movies, and I love watching to see what the gowns look like. I love that Billy Crystal is hosting -- no offense to Anne Hathaway and James Franco, both of whom I adore. But Billy, who started his career on stage in front of an audience, just has it down. Actors who aren't used to being able to ad-lib and work a crowd just don't have the skill set.

Anyway, every year I dream of a movie made from one of my books winning an Oscar. It'll never happen, but I can dream. And I always think about all of the movies in the 'Adapted Screenplays' category. Have you noticed that in recent years, more movies than not are adapted screenplays? This year we have, what, at least three up for the Big Prize? War Horse, Hugo, The Help, Tinker-Tailor-Soldier-Spy, plus My Week With Marilyn and others up for awards too.

It seems to me that Hollywood has a distinct lack of original screenplays, and I wonder why that is. Maybe because book writers have all the really great ideas, and it's easier to take those and put them on the silver screen. And again, no offense to screenwriters, because I know it's not easy to write a screenplay -- I had to write a short one for a class once. It was actually kind of fun, but formatting it is a total nightmare. But still, it's like reality TV-- it seems like no one whose business is actually writing for the screen actually has a clue anymore. Kind of why I watch a lot of British TV.

And the poor authors, who had the original idea, unless they are part of the script-writing team for the movie, pretty much get overlooked at awards time, even though without them there would be NO adapted screenplay or leading actress role or costumes or special effects to give awards TO. No one really thanks the authors of the books, and if they do, it's a footnote.

So even if one of my books ever managed to make it to film, and even if it did happen to win an award, I will never be the one on that stage accepting that little golden man. Unless by some chance I happen to get a part in a major motion picture. Yeah right.

But I still love movies, and I love movies made from my favorite books. Well, not all of them--that tragedy that was THE GOLDEN COMPASS comes to mind, as does the Percy Jackson movie. Shame, because both had the potential to be awesome.

I am crossing my fingers that The Hunger Games movie lives up to my expectations. Just a few more weeks...squee!


  1. That would be a wonderful dream to see our books made into moviews. We can dream. :) I'm looking forward to The Hunger Games too. Just watched the last Twilight movie, but was disappointed in it.

  2. The trailer for The Hunger Games looks fantastic and the fact that the writer herself approved at least one of the casting choices (Peeta) helps, so fingers crossed. As for seeing one of my books made into a movie - it's such a secret dream I hardly ever look at it. Well, maybe sometimes right before I fall asleep.