Posts Tagged movies inspired by middle grade novels

Make This Book Series into a TV Series, PLEASE!

Stay-At-Home orders, pandemic response, hand-washing, and social distancing. These are interesting times. Life has changed. It has been interesting but challenging. The science life will soon call me back full time, so I’m trying to make the most out of this period of my life and simplify my world moving forward.

With so much sudden creative free time for a creator who normally struggles to find creative free time, I must admit I’ve struggled. Not quite a Jack Torrance-level struggle, although I did catch myself writing, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” twenty or so times in my journal the other morning.

The Shining (1980) - All Work and No Play Scene (3/7) | Movieclips ...

Here has been my main writing problem. With so many new and old writing ideas streaming through my head, I have often felt like Lucy and Ethel on the chocolate candy wrapping line. 

That’s no joke. A lot of me wanting to write but with a healthy helping of spinning the wheels.

On a positive note, I started drawing again last year and this work-from-home period has given me time to take some online art instruction. I’m enjoying the process and have combined the writing life with art into attempting a couple of graphic storytelling projects (one is a STEM informative fiction!).

It’s all going to work out in the end. I’m 100% sure of that.

Another thing I thought I’d do was stream a bunch of TV shows and movies. You know, catch up on all these shows people are talking about. I haven’t. Maybe it’s not a bad thing. I can still nod my head and act like I know what the person raving about a Netflix series is talking about, right?

That said, I’ve put a considerable amount of thought the past few weeks into a question that was posted a few months ago during a Twitter chat. 

If you had complete control over the production aspects, what MG/YA book or book series would you sign to be made into a movie or streaming series?

A couple of book series I’d make into TV series or movies are technically considered YA but I’ve always believed they have great appeal to upper middle grade readers as well.

First, Terry Pratchett’s Tiffany Aching series. I’m currently almost through rereading the entire series again

The Wee Free Men (Tiffany Aching #1) Cover

A Hat Full of Sky (Tiffany Aching #2) Cover

Wintersmith (Tiffany Aching #3) Cover

I Shall Wear Midnight (Tiffany Aching #4) Cover

The Shepherd's Crown (Tiffany Aching #5) Cover

 

 

 

 

Second, Johnathan Stroud’s Lockwood & Co. series. I might reread this series next!

The Hollow Boy (Lockwood & Co. #3) Cover

The Creeping Shadow (Lockwood & Co. #4) Cover

The Empty Grave (Lockwood & Co. #5) Cover

 

 

 

 

In my humble opinion, these are two great books series that both pop visually in the reader’s mind and would translate well to the big or small screen. I invite and implore you, dear readers, to share your dream book-to-movie projects in the comments below or link to this post on social media with your suggestions. 

Who knows? Maybe a producer will see your ideas and put the wheels in motion.

Take care, MUF friends!

Be safe.

Be kind.

Learn something new.

 

BONUS: Here’s a couple of MG books to movie pieces by Mindy Alyse Weiss and Andrea Pyros post on the MUF blog:

Movies Inspired by Middle Grade Novels by Mindy Alyse Weiss from 4/17/2015

10 middle grade books made into movies by Andrea Pyros 12/14/2016

 

Movies Inspired by Middle Grade Novels

I kept seeing commercials for Home and thought it looked cute, but didn’t really think about seeing it in the theater…until I read that it was adapted from The True Meaning of Smekday, by Adam Rex. I LOVE that book! Now, I can’t wait to see the movie.

This made me think about other middle grade novels that inspired movies. I think it’s fun to read a book then see how the movie compares to it. I often enjoy books way more than the movies and feel like people are missing some important things that didn’t transfer into the film version. But there are times when I like the movie better, or love both the book and the movie about the same amount.

Check out these middle grade novels that were turned into movies:

THE TRUE MEANING OF SMEKDAY

Smekday coverWhen twelve-year-old Gratuity (“Tip”) Tucci is assigned to write five pages on “The True Meaning of Smekday” for the National Time Capsule contest, she’s not sure where to begin. When her mom started telling everyone about the messages aliens were sending through a mole on the back of her neck? Maybe on Christmas Eve, when huge, bizarre spaceships descended on the Earth and the aliens-called Boov-abducted her mother? Or when the Boov declared Earth a colony, renamed it “Smekland” (in honor of glorious Captain Smek), and forced all Americans to relocate to Florida via rocketpod?

In any case, Gratuity’s story is much, much bigger than the assignment. It involves her unlikely friendship with a renegade Boov mechanic named J.Lo.; a futile journey south to find Gratuity’s mother at the Happy Mouse Kingdom; a cross-country road trip in a hovercar called Slushious; and an outrageous plan to save the Earth from yet another alien invasion.

JEREMY FINK AND THE MEANING OF LIFE

Jeremy Fink coverIn one month Jeremy Fink will turn thirteen. But does he have what it takes to be a teenager? He collects mutant candy, he won’t venture more than four blocks from his apartment if he can help it, and he definitely doesn’t like surprises. On the other hand, his best friend, Lizzy, isn’t afraid of anything, even if that might get her into trouble now and then.

Jeremy’s summer takes an unexpected turn when a mysterious wooden box arrives in the mail. According to the writing on the box, it holds the meaning of life! Jeremy is supposed to open it on his thirteenth birthday. The problem is, the keys are missing, and the box is made so that only the keys will open it without destroying what’s inside. Jeremy and Lizzy set off to find the keys, but when one of their efforts goes very wrong, Jeremy starts to lose hope that he’ll ever be able to open the box. But he soon discovers that when you’re meeting people named Oswald Oswald and using a private limo to deliver unusual objects to strangers all over the city, there might be other ways of finding out the meaning of life.

MATILDA

Matilda coverMatilda is a genius. Unfortunately, her family treats her like a dolt. Her crooked car-salesman father and loud, bingo-obsessed mother think Matilda’s only talent is as a scapegoat for everything that goes wrong in their miserable lives. But it’s not long before the sweet and sensitive child decides to fight back. Faced with practical jokes of sheer brilliance, her parents don’t stand a chance.

Matilda applies her untapped mental powers to rid the school of the evil, child-hating headmistress, Miss Trunchbull, and restore her nice teacher, Miss Honey, to financial security.

THE INVENTION OF HUGO CABRET

Invention of Hugo Cabret coverOrphan, clock keeper, and thief, Hugo lives in the walls of a busy Paris train station, where his survival depends on secrets and anonymity. But when his world suddenly interlocks with an eccentric, bookish girl and a bitter old man who runs a toy booth in the station, Hugo’s undercover life, and his most precious secret, are put in jeopardy. A cryptic drawing, a treasured notebook, a stolen key, a mechanical man, and a hidden message from Hugo’s dead father form the backbone of this intricate, tender, and spellbinding mystery.

MR. POPPER’S PENGUINS

Mr. Popper's Penguins coverThe unexpected delivery of a large crate containing an Antarctic penguin changes the life and fortunes of Mr. Popper, a house painter obsessed by dreams of the Polar regions.

 

We had a great post about this back in 2010. Click on this link to check out a whole bunch of other movies that were inspired by middle grade novels.

What is your favorite movie based on a middle grade novel? Do you have any favorite novels that you’re hoping will be turned into a movie?

Mindy Alyse Weiss writes humorous middle grade novels with heart and quirky picture books. She’s constantly inspired by her two daughters, an adventurous Bullmasador adopted from The Humane Society, and an adorable Beagle/Pointer mix who was rescued from the Everglades. Visit Mindy’s TwitterFacebook, or blog to read more about her writing life, conference experiences, and writing tips.