YA Books vs Their Movie Adaptations

Is it worthwhile to adapt YA books into TV or film? What determines if it is done well? Is it wise to change a lot when carrying over to a different medium? Compare popular examples like the Harry Potter, Twilight, The Hunger Games, etc.

  • This is a bit of a loose topic, but could then be left open to the person who selects it. There are a few interesting approaches that could be looked at here. Obviously there is always the element of debate around adaptations of any book to film, what to keep, what to change etc. and with this the value in such changes and the complexity of allowing the new version to speak for itself. However, when considering YA specifically this is interesting as it has become a financially viable field, and as always where there is money there is usually an agenda. What I find interesting is the wealth of "queer" and non-binary YA that is present in today's marketplace but have much more limited discussions about their application to the big screen. Is YA being used to perpetrate socialised stereotypes in a repressive manner? Another discussion is often scope, most YA are serialised (again that is where the money is), how do you successfully guarantee the transition to film will ensure the full series is made, some are very successful such as HP and HG, but others such as Vampire Academy struggled to make a mark in an over saturated marketplace. Finally, there is also the question of canon - if significant changes are made, characterwise and narrative, how does this impact the canon of an ongoing series and the fan experience, especially when considering much YA has a huge fanfiction following that values their own interpretations - so is that a can not worth opening? Indeed the fascination with YA is an interesting development rather specific to this century. – Sarai Mannolini-Winwood 6 months ago
  • I think it can be worthwhile, but I think screenwriters and directors need to be careful with their adaptations. I personally think multi-episode show adaptations (like Shadow and Bone) work better than individual movies because movies often cut out crucial scenes in order to fit within the 2-hour limit, whereas shows can work with at least 7-8 hours of content. – isabeldwrites 2 months ago

Want to write about Film or other art forms?

Create writer account