When it comes to books being made into movies, do you prefer to read the novel first, or watch the film adaptation? From gritty summer reads to classic favourites, books have long been the focus of many a filmmaker. And, while some Hollywood offerings have fallen a bit flat over the years (The Great Gatsby, anyone?), when the folks at Tinseltown get it right, they get it RIGHT. While you sit and debate the examples of yesteryear, we’ve been busy getting a list together of all the latest book-to-big-screen offerings due out in Singapore over the next 12 months.
The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
What’s it about? It’s the page-turner of a tome that’s probably made an appearance on every book club going, but there’s a reason it was a bestseller: it’s brilliant! Thirteen-year-old New Yorker Theo Decker gets caught up in a terrorist attack at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and steals a priceless piece of art in the chaos that ensues, which turns his world upside down. We can’t tell you how excited we are about this one being given the Hollywood treatment but, given the subject matter, it’s best saved for older teens… or a date night with your other half.
Who’s in it? Starring Ansel Elgort, Stranger Thing’s Finn Wolfhard, Nicole Kidman and Sarah Paulson.
When’s it out? 19 September 2019
Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats by T.S. Eliot
What’s it about? Strictly speaking, this isn’t a book adaptation as the original source is a collection of poems, but we can’t not mention this A-lister extravaganza. You may have seen the musical on the West End or Broadway, but you ain’t seen nothin’ yet. The plot? Ok, it sounds a bit nuts and, bizarrely, no one is ever 100 per cent certain, but we’re going with this: a ragtag posse of cats called the Jellicles try to decide which one of their members will be reborn (cats have nine lives, remember?). Expect lots of singing, lots of dancing and lots of celebrities with cat hair plastered on their faces.
Who’s in it? Oh you know, only DAME JUDI DENCH and SIR IAN McKELLAN. No biggie. Also, their royal highnesses Taylor Swift, Jennifer Hudson, Idris Elba, James Corden, Rebel Wilson, et al.
When’s it out? 19 December 2019
Note: More of a stage fan than a screen buff? Cats the musical will be coming to Singapore for a limited run in December, too.
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
What’s it about? It’s had several big-screen (and small-screen) reincarnations over the years, but this newest version has everyone’s favourite witch in it… Hermione Granger! That’s right, gorgeous Gryffindor Emma Watson takes a star turn as the eldest March sister, Meg, as she and her three sisters come of age in the aftermath of the American Civil War. No doubt you’ve read this classic in your school days but we still never tire of the family drama – and we totally want to be Jo when we grow up.
Who’s in it? Laura Dern plays Marmee, Meryl Streep takes on the role of the formidable Aunt March and Saoirse Ronan plays tomboy Jo.
When’s it out? 25 December 2019
The Call of the Wild by Jack London
What’s it about? This may be an oldie book (it was first published in 1903) but it’s definitely a goodie, so we’re expecting big things from the film adaptation. And although we don’t know why we do it to ourselves, there’s something about tearjerker dog films we can’t help going back to (we’re still not over Marley & Me, sob). The story follows canine Buck, who gets pinched from his California home and sold as a sled dog in brutally cold Alaska. Take tissues.
Who’s in it? Indiana Jones, we mean, Harrison Ford brings his acting chops to this big-screen version, as does Downton Abbey’s Dan Stevens.
When’s it out? It’s still TBC here in Singapore, but we’re taking a stab at 20 February 2020.
Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer
What’s it about? This YA fantasy book series is a hit with many young ‘uns we know, so we’re hoping this Disney big-screen adaptation does its fans proud. The premise? Well, the author himself has described his work as “Die Hard with fairies” (yippekiyay indeed) but if that’s not enough of a sell, let us go one step further. Artemis Fowl is a tween criminal mastermind and kidnaps a fairy, holding her hostage for a large ransom. Ooh er.
Who’s in it? Good ol’ Judi Dench (again), plus everyone’s favourite snowman, Josh Gad.
When’s it out? 28 May 2020 (so you’ve got time to read it).
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