Shelf to Screen: 5 Bestsellers That Were Made into Successful Films
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Shelf to Screen: 5 Bestsellers That Were Made into Successful Films

Avid readers believe that a book is always better than their movie adaptations. This could be true in most cases, but there are some great exceptions where the book and the movie have aligned and created a visual masterpiece. There are numerous novels and stories across the globe that have inspired film makers to make awe-inspiring movies.


Seemingly a good story and script is needed for visual production to break the clutter. Several film makers have relied on literary masterpieces like the ones mentioned below to form the foundation of their projects, some of which turned out to be visual treats for movie lovers around the globe.

Here’s a list of five movies those were adapted from novels and have turned-out a visual masterpiece.

1. Harry Potter (Fantasy)

Harry Potter Movie

Image source: Cosmopolitan UK

J K Rowling became a household name after the stupendous success of her first book of the Harry Potter series. This book was adapted as a movie in 2001 and became a resounding critical and commercial success. The magnificent magical world created was undoubtedly inspiring and provided tremendous potential to be interpreted in the AV format.

The mystical creatures, castle, alleys, etc. were translated brilliantly on screen. It was a VFX delight and a visual treat. All of Rowling’s 7 books were consequently made into 8 films altogether and her spinoffs of the wizardry world were also helmed.

At Seamedu School of Pro-Expressionism, we not only offer comprehensive film making courses that equip the creators of tomorrow with the right skill sets to make their own movies, but also extend a full-fledged degree in VFX and animation for those who love the software-enabled magic that makes films like Harry Potter, Fantastic Beasts, and Lord of the Rings possible.

2. The Godfather (Crime)

the godfather movie

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Considered as one of the greatest films of all times by many, this 1972 American crime film is based on Mario Puzo’s bestselling novel. This film for a brief time was the highest-grossing film ever made.

Based on the organized crime syndicate or the mafia and crime families in New York, this film became the perfect onscreen interpretation, and still holds the coveted list in the all-time best films on IMDB.

At the 45th Academy Awards, it won the Oscars for Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Director and many others.

Seamedu’s film making courses include a film appreciation and analysis component that exposes students to the world cinema and classics, ensuring that they study all-time great films and hone their craft.

3. Fight Club (Thriller)

Fight Club Movie

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Fight Club is a 1999 film based on the 1996 novel by Chuck Palahniuk. It was directed by David Fincher and stars Brad Pitt, Edward Norton, and Helena Bonham Carter. This film received critical success but was not a typical hit initially. Even the critics were reserved with their praise as they were a bit hesitant about the violence and the morals of the film. After becoming one of the most controversial films of that year, however, slowly the audience warmed up to the film.

The DVD release of the film was immensely successful which earned it the tag of a cult film. It is now considered as one of the best films of the 90s. The book was also received similarly. It talks about politics, violence, male identity, terrorism, Nietzsche and many more such topics. It might be considered a post-modern nihilistic work of art. Fincher did tremendous justice to the book by using brilliant cinematic devices in the film.

At Seamedu, film making students get great insights into adapting novels into gripping cinema by applying captivating cinematic techniques, like David Fincher did with Fight Club.

4. Eat Pray Love (Slice of Life)

Eat Pray Love Movie

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Elizabeth Gilbert’s 2006 memoir Eat Pray Love was directed by Ryan Murphy and made into a biographical romantic drama in 2010. Although this film was not appreciated critically and mostly received mixed reviews, it turned out to be quite a commercial success, making more than thrice its budget. The audience could resonate with the characters in the book which made it click.

Cinematography is a vital component of our film making degree curriculum. Our students are given access to industry-standard cameras and shooting equipment, so they can experiment with the hardware and apply their knowledge to practical assignments during the course.

5. It (Horror)

IT Horror Movie

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It is an American supernatural horror film, based on the novel by Stephen King. The novel was written by him in 1986. The film, after releasing, set numerous records at the box office and won several awards. The film is directed by Andy Muschietti.

The novel by Stephen King was also a highly successful one and proved inspiration for one of the most terrifying films of all time. The concept of an evil entity feeding on phobias of people struck a chord with the film maker and provided ample scope for narrative brilliance on screen.

Film genres is an integral part of the curriculum for students who choose film making as their specialization in the third semester at Seamedu. It is important for aspiring film makers to understand and analyze every genre, so they are equipped to handle whatever challenge is thrown at them after their course.

Frankly, a list of only five such literary and audio-visual wonders does not do justice to the numerous epics that exist today, but this is our attempt to select classics according to genre.

A few honorable mentions in this list include masterworks like:

  • The Shawshank Redemption
  • Jurassic Park
  • American Psycho
  • Charlie & the chocolate factory
  • Sherlock Holmes
  • The Sorcerer’s Apprentice
  • Ghost in the Shell

It is an art to adapt a good book as an AV format, which can be learned from the masters in the field!


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