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6 Books Heading to the Big Screen in 2015

As usual, 2015 is a busy year for books being adapted into films. The pages of novels and non-fiction books inspire filmmakers, and I enjoy seeing how the world of cinema transforms a story. Sometimes the film improves the plot of a book by widening and enriching its scope, and sometimes the throughline gets lost in translation on the way to the theater. Whatever the result, I look forward to adaptations of existing material even when they seem like they might be reboots. Writers and directors usually bring their own unique touches to the party. The key word there is usually. I’ve perused the long list of films we’ll be getting next year that are based on books, and these are the nine titles I’m most looking forward to watching.

Insurgent: March 20, 2015
Book by Veronica Roth, screenplay by Brian Duffield and Akiva Goldsman

Insurgent is the second book in the Divergent trilogy, and the movie will pick back up on the story of Tris Prior (Shailene Woodley) as she struggles to survive in a dystopian post-apocalyptic city. It definitely has some similar threads to the story of The Hunger Games, but the characters and the presence of the five factions – Abnegation, Amity, Candor, Dauntless, and Erudite – add enough shades of difference. You’ll want to see the first film or read the first book before seeing Insurgent.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2: November 20, 2015
Book by Suzanne Collins, screenplay by Danny Strong and Peter Craig

The fourth and final film in The Hunger Games series is based on the third book, Mockingjay. Yeah, it joined the trend of splitting the last book in half. Part 1 left off with the rescue of Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) from the Capitol and highlighted the continued suffering of Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence). As we go into Part 2, the rebellion against President Snow kicks into high gear. I suspect the final film will be more action-oriented and just as brutal.

Seventh Son: February 6, 2015
Book by Joseph Delaney, screenplay by Charles Leavitt, Steven Knight, and Matt Greenberg

Based on the book released as The Last Apprentice: Revenge of the Witch in the United States, the Seventh Son has magic and dragons. I don’t necessarily expect an epic and sweeping story from this film, but it does look like a fair amount of fun and I have room for all kinds of stories in my heart. Ben Barnes stars as Tom Ward, a young boy who can see beyond what others see because he is the seventh son of a seventh son. His parents apprentice him to Master Gregory, played by Jeff Bridges, so that Tom can learn to fight against “The Dark.” Supporting cast includes Julianne Moore and Kit Harington with John Dykstra on visual effects (Dykstra’s involvement is enough to intrigue me).

The Jungle Book: October 9, 2015
Book by Rudyard Kipling, screenplay by Justin Marks

The 1894 classic about a boy named Mowgli who is raised by animals is headed back to theaters in the form of a live-action/CGI film directed by Jon Favreau. When I say CGI, I mean the photo realistic variety and not the overly cartoon-y stuff. Neel Sethi stars as Mowgli, and the non-human characters are voiced by a powerhouse of talented actors including Bill Murray (Baloo), Christopher Walken (King Louie), Idris Elba (Shere Khan), and Scarlett Johansson (Kaa) among others. It’s a Disney film oriented towards families so it might be more like the 1967 animated movie than I’d like it to be, but it has the potential to be something special.


Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: 2015
Book by Seth Grahame-Smith, screenplay by David O. Russell and Burr Steers

This zombie-riddled story of the Bennet sisters, Mr. Darcy, Mr. Bingley, and co. is an adaptation of the Jane Austen classic Pride and Prejudice. The book parody penned by Grahame-Smith is headed to theaters this year and features Lily James as Elizabeth Bennet, Matt Smith as Mr. Collins, and Game of Thrones veterans Lena Headey and Charles Dance in roles that haven’t been announced yet. Regency era dresses and zombies? It sounds just ridiculous enough to be entertaining.

Victor Frankenstein: October 2, 2015
Book by Mary Shelley, screenplay by Max Landis

The latest movie adaptation of the 1818 novel about a scientist named Victor Frankenstein has strong leads lined up. James McAvoy will play Frankenstein, and Daniel Radcliffe stars as Igor. The cast also includes Jessica Brown Findlay (Downtown Abbey) as Lorelei and Mark Gatiss (Sherlock) as Dettweiler. This version of the story is told from Igor’s perspective; we’ll learn about his origins and his friendship with Frankenstein.

Do you prefer to read books before they’re adapted into films or vice versa? Which book to film adaptations are you looking forward to in 2015? Let us know in the comments.

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  1. Dipi says:

    All in all I will watch a movie before reading the book, however there have been many books I have read before seeing the movie and when the movie came out I was disappointed by discrepancies. I suppose it all depends. I have children that love to read and on occasion they find those diamonds in the rough and I read them and eventually a movie is made. I am looking forward to Seventh Son. I love Jeff Bridges.

  2. James says:

    Dark Places, another book by Gillian Flynn, the author of Gone Girl, is supposed to come out in 2015

  3. Wishva says:

    Books first. Always.

  4. anke says:

    I don’t mind if i see the movie first. But i do mind that i don’t see paper towns on the list? I loved the book, and know the filming stopped not so long ago, but i hope i can see it in 2015, cause i really loved the book!

  5. Ryan says:

    Where’s Inherent Vice?!

    • Taylor Anne says:

      It’s technically already out in limited release. Therefore, doesn’t get a 2015 release date.

  6. Suzuka1138 says:

    If Victor Frankenstein is from the perspective of Igor, there’s no point in reading the book–no Igor there.

  7. Rick Hardslab says:

    The intro says nine titles, but there are only six. Am I missing a “Next” button?

  8. Michael says:

    I like to read the book first and it allows me to appreciate how well the screenwriter/director ADAPTED the book. All You Need is Kill vs Edge of Tomorrow was an interesting example of how the movie diverged from the book but I understood why the changes were made.

  9. Jenni D. says:

    Aww. Got all excited thinking Seventh Son would be starting  the Orson Scott Card series.

  10. brols says:

    Uhhhh seeing as Igor isn’t in the book, I don’t think it is necessary to read. Love Mcavoy though

  11. RiE says:

    Looking forward to Chronicles of Nick (inferno is the first) by Sherrilyn Kenyon.  Her Dark Hubter books are supposed be a TV series soon too.  U tend to like book first to get my own idea of what I think they look like, etc.  

    • Lauren says:

      Ohhh I LOVED those books!  I didn’t know they were making them into a movie/tv series.  Any idea when it is planning on being released?

  12. Clarence says:

    What about “the Martian”? It was a great book and the movie is supposed to be out next fall…

  13. Kit says:

    …They forgot 50 Shades of Gray.

    • Danielle says:

      The article was movies about books that the author is looking FORWARD to. Not movies based on horribly written books with one dimensional awful characters that make them want to be sick.

  14. KB says:

    Oh yeah, you forgot about Paper Towns.

  15. KB says:

    Exactly what Steve said. I prefer to watch the movie first so my view of the book won’t be tainted.

  16. Betty says:

    I usually like to read the books first.  The only book I’m glad I read after I saw the movie was Sahara. If I had read the book first, I would have probably walked out of the theater. instead I rather liked the movie, but I LOVE the book. 

  17. EgoMartini says:

    I was just thinking this weekend – if Peter Jackson is really finished with Middle Earth ( if he can turn his back on The Silmarillion) he could do a bang up job on a live action version of Miyazaki’s manga “Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind”There is so much more to the manga that never made it to the animated feature.  If Jackson could squeeze 3 2 hour plus movies out of the Hobbit then he’d have no problem getting at least 6 movies out of Nausicaä

  18. DJKento says:

    Divergent was a bad book and a bad movie. I know I read the book and saw the film but I couldn’t tell you what they were about. SO BLAND.
    Seventh Son has been shelved repeatedly because the studio has no faith in it. It looks terrible. 
    Oh and the only Jungle Book I want was already made… in 1967… OH OOBEE DOO! I WANNA BE LIKE YOOOOOOUUUUUU

    • There are actually a couple of great Jungle Book adaptations. I love the 1942, 1967, and 1994 versions, though 1967 is my favorite. There is also an interesting Soviet animated version.

      More Jungle Book adaptations aren’t a problem for me. 😀

    • luna says:

      get your mind right i may not have read divergent but watched the movie and i loved it so sotp talking crap about it

  19. Kay says:

    Excuse me,  Paper Towns ? 

  20. Mel says:

    It doesn’t matter which comes first in my opinion. I read LOTR and Hobbit before watching the movies and enjoyed and loved both.  But I had never heard of the Hunger Games until I watched the movie and ended up loving it so I read the books. It’s the story I am after not the form its in.

    • DJKento says:

      I feel like The Hunger Games is an example of films that are far better than the books. The books are pretty terribly written… 

  21. Becky Watling says:

    Book first always. Then movie. 

  22. Steve says:

    I like to watch the movie first if I can, that way they don’t screw up my vision of the book