Saturday, March 15, 2014

Page to Screen

On the main floor of the library we are currently showcasing a display called “From Page To Screen” which features stories that have crossed mediums between book and film. In most cases it was a bestselling or highly acclaimed book that received the “Hollywood treatment” years after its release but there are also a few novelizations of narratives that sprung from cinema. All genres and reading levels are included, from Harry Potter to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Stop in today and check out a bundle and have fun analyzing how the art of storytelling differs between mediums.
Here are just a few of the titles available on display:

Harry Potter
In print Harry Potter is one of the most successful series of all time, breaking countless records and igniting a mainstream popular culture frenzy like few other brands in any medium ever have. The unparalleled success of the books was nearly matched by the box office shattering reception of the movies. Most fans seem thoroughly satisfied concerning the transition from page to screen, perhaps with an understanding that considering the massive size of the books there was never a chance the story could be copied verbatim. 

The Hunger Games
The Hunger Games trilogy was always well received but there is no doubt that the book series exploded in popularity following the release of the 2012 film starring Jessica Lawrence.  While the trio of books were all on the New York Times best seller list prior to the film adaptation, only a few months after the ground shattering success of the movie announced that the series by Suzanne Collins surpassed the Harry Potter series to become its top seller. The second film, Catching Fire, was the highest grossing film in 2013 with more than 400 million dollars in domestic revenue alone.

The Dark Knight
In recent years superheroes have become almost more synonymous with the big screen than their pioneering yet comparatively humble roots in graphic novels, aka comic books. Many reading careers start in the company of heroes like Superman and Spider-Man and considering the genres nearly century old history there is no denying its significance in print narrative. However the heroes have blossomed with the times and their high octane, special effects laden adventures are perfectly suited to the fast paced, high stakes, spectacle driven blockbusters summer audiences crave. Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight is arguably the pinnacle of this courtship and is most inspired by Jeff Loeb’s Dark Victory.

The Da Vinci Code
Dan Brown’s professorial super sleuth Robert Langdon is a character born for the big screen. Langdon’s episodic adventures take him to exotic and famous locales all over the world in pursuit of mystery and adventure. Cinema characters like Indiana Jones and James Bond (sorry Ian Fleming, Bond belongs to film now) are clear components in the character’s make up. The overwhelming success of Langdon’s adventures at the box office and a string of copycat historical adventure films like National Treasure are evidence to the concept’s staying power with audiences.

Life of Pi
Life of Pi is a fantasy adventure unlike any other. In both book and film the story’s heavy themes of spirituality, isolation, and death are in contrast to its remarkable imagery, high stakes action, and sometimes playful tone. A string of writers and directors falling through on the production of the film adaptation led some to call the story “unfilmable”. Any thought of that was subsequently silenced when the film, directed by Ang Lee, grossed more than 600 million dollars and won four out of eleven Academy Award nominations.


These are just a few of the beloved stories that have made the jump from page to screen. Other favorites on display include The Lord of the Rings, The Help, The Devil Wears Prada, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, Twilight, and many more. Stop in today to check out a book and movie bundle!

Posted by Terry Pierson, Library Clerk