Monday, August 26, 2013

Movies From Books

In Cape Town, in July, we saw the movie, Spud, The Madness Continues, the sequel to the very popular Spud movie.

Both movies are adapted from books by the South African author, John van de Ruit, who, very kindly, inscribed personal messages in copies of the first Spud book for each of the children participating in the Kids' Lit Quiz world final.

Our family has now seen both Spud movies and enjoyed them both.  I recommend them to you.  I hear the books are good too and am waiting for my turn to read the ones we have here!

Both films (and books) are set at a boys boarding school outside Durban, in Kwa-Zulu Natal Province in South Africa in the early 1990s.  Although mostly about the school experience of a scholarship boy, John Milton,  the films (and the books) are framed by the changing political landscape in South Africa at that time; when the international campaign to release Nelson Mandela had almost reached its aim (Mr Mandela was released from prison in 1991, after serving 27 years of a life sentence) and many white South Africans were emigrating.  It was a time of political and social flux for the whole country which is reflected in the character's own adolescent adjustments and observations of his school and home life.

Other Movies

There seem to be quite a few other movies being made from children's or young adult books which are either in development (the film company is deciding if they can put together a project for financing), in production (they are making the film) or due for release.

Here is some information about films projects based on books you might have read (and loved):

Author Patrick Ness has sold the film rights of his Chaos Walking trilogy to Lionsgate, the production company which made the Hunger Games (and its sequel, Catching Fire, which due to be released later this year.)

Warner Bros, the same production company which made the Harry Potter films, is working on a  film adaption of Magyk, the first of the Septimus Heap series written by Angie Sage. 

The film producer, Harvey Weinstein has been working on a film adaptation of the first two books of the Artemis Fowl series by Eion Colfer since 2000.

A movie based on The Book Thief by Markus Zusak is due for release early next year.  The official trailer is now out.  You can see it at The Book Thief: Official Site.  There's a review of the trailer here which says that the movie looks like a winner.

The second film based on Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson series, Sea of Monsters, is due for release  soon.

I've also recently discovered the Early Word website which provides stacks of information about books.  Check it out!  This page gives really comprehensive information about movies adapted from books which have recently been made or are now being developed or in production.   I'm sure there are a lot of movies you'll recognise from books you've read.

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