John Green recently announced that a director has been chosen to adapt The Fault In Our Stars. We know you’re all thinking, “Why hasn’t anyone adapted his book already?” but this wouldn’t be the first time one of his work was on its way to the silver screen. According to Green, most of his books have been optioned but have never made it all the way.
Last week I told you why TFiOS is a must read, this week I am going to tell you why the rest of his novels should also be turned into movies.
I believe that Green writes in a way that would make his books easy to adapt for the screen. His characters all have unique qualities and ways of acting, making it very easy to picture the character coming to life with the right actor. In addition, his work has been quoted countless of times and being able to hear them said on the big screen is sure to raise many goose bumps.
Instead of comforting ourselves by sitting in the fetal position rocking back and forth until the casting rumor mill starts churning, ANDPOP wants to celebrate Green’s writing and show you why all his other books are movie material.
Looking For Alaska
Looking for Alaska follows the experiences of Pudge during his first year at a boarding school, where he comes out of his shell as he transforms from loner to someone who wants more in life thanks to his friends.
Pudge, and his friends, Alaska, The Colonel, and Takumi are all so colorful and special, and it would be incredible to see them in action. The gang’s pranks all have potential for great comedic scenes. I mean, just imagine what it’ll be like when they hire a male stripper to perform at a school assembly. Also, there is serious potential for beautiful romantic moments as the chemistry between Pudge and Alaska is sure to radiate of the screen. Basically, the action involved in this book would make for great scenes, the love story is MADE for pictures, and the book sets the stage for some great comedic moments (i.e. like Captain hiding his vodka in milk—kind of gross and kind of genius).
LFA was very close to being made into a movie. The O.C.’s Josh Schwartz was signed to pull double duty as the project’s director and producer. Paramount eventually shelved the project as Schwartz become too busy with adapting Gossip Girl for the CW.
Will Grayson Will Grayson
Will Grayson Will Grayson tells the story of two vastly different teenage boys both named Will Grayson whose lives become intertwined after meeting just once during a night out in Chicago.
Co-written by David Levithan, it’s the one book that has not been optioned because, as a producer once told Green, “The only thing Hollywood hates more than smart teenagers is smart, gay teenagers.”
This is a shame, because the one thing Hollywood has not given us is a feature film starring a gay protagonist who is neither the “sidekick best friend,” or struggling with coming to terms with their sexuality. I think we need a gay protagonist whose story doesn’t just revolve around his sexuality, but which also shows his struggle with school, family, and life in general.
The book’s characters have to potential to naturally come to life due to their distinctive qualities. With the right casting, Tiny, the large gay best friend of one of the two Will Grayson’s, could be truly a hysterical figure. There’s also the serious possibility for great musical numbers as Green and Levithan wrote the lyrics to some of the songs of Tiny’s musical. Lawlz will ensue.
Paper Towns tell the story of Quentin and his teenage adventures as he chases the girl of his dreams, Margo.
Mandate Pictures optioned the rights to Paper Towns and John Green himself was hired to write it’s screenplay. In fact, Green spent most of 2009 drafting this script, according to his website. Mandate didn’t think they had a screenplay they would be able to shoot and eventually shelved the project.
Paper Towns would make a great movie because of the scenery alone. During Quentin’s hunt for Margo, he finds a run down building that will no doubt be a cool set with all of its secret passages. The pranks Margo pulls (with the help of Quentin) could also make for great visual cinematography.
Ultimately, these books would all be worthy of a movie adaptation because Green would make a terrific collaborator. He knows he can’t create movies identical to their novel counterparts as movie adaption is just that—an adaption—something that is based upon but does not exactly mirror the novel.
“ I’ve always believed that a movie CAN’T be faithful to a book, because a book is something that happens in conversation between a writer and a reader…,” he wrote on his website. “In the end I’d rather make a good movie than a faithful one… I wanted the ideas of the book to be preserved, but mostly I just want the movie to be good.”
This approach is sure to keep dedicated fans from freaking out if a detail is wrong, Green’s diplomacy will make him a great movie-making partner when It comes to his involvement in his words being adapted onto the screen, and is sure to give his collaborators the freedom to do what’s best for the picture.