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Film Lists

Most Promising Book-to-Film Adaptations in 2019

Only pretentious people say, "The book is better!"

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Try finding someone willing to argue that Mario Puzo's novel The Godfather (1969) was better than Francis Ford Coppola's film.

Skim through the pages of Peter Benchley's Jaws or Roderick Thorp's Nothing Lasts Forever (later adapted as a little flick called Die Hard), and you'd have to agree that those films turned out better than the books. But those are the exceptions, not the rule, and there's no shortage of critics who enjoy scoffing, "The book was better."

For a moment in the early 2000s, it seemed young adult fiction was churning out exceptions, considering the phenomenal success of multiple fantasy series from Harry Potter and Hunger Games to Twilight. But frankly, that's not saying much when shaky ASMR videos are better quality than Stephenie Meyer's writing in Twilight. Most film adaptations slated for release in 2019 skew towards teen romances and eccentric family dramas. Here are six upcoming books-to-film that might be better than the book:

1.Five Feet Apart by Rachel Lippincott (March 15)

Fans of John Green are probably already familiar with Lippincott's 2018 novel. As two teens with cystic fibrosis, Stella Grant and Will Newman have damaged lungs that put their lives at risk if they come into close contact with each other. Stella risks severe infection and could jeopardize her chances of receiving a lung transplant, while Will just wants to turn 18 so he can check himself out of the hospital. Cole Sprouse (Riverdale) and Haley Lu Richardson (The Edge of Seventeen) star in the film adaptation, directed by Justin Baldoni (Jane the Virgin).

Five Feet Apart Teaser Trailer #1 (2019) | Movieclips Trailers youtu.be

2. Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple (March 22)

Bernadette is a funny, eccentric, agoraphobic genius who suddenly disappears from her home. Bee, her 15-year-old daughter, follows a trail of emails, work documents, and secret letters to find her mother. Directed and co-written by Richard Linklater, the PG-13 film stars Cate Blanchett as Bernadette, with Kristen Wiig, Judy Greer, and Billy Crudup in supporting roles.

WHERE'D YOU GO, BERNADETTE | Official Trailer youtu.be

3. Visible Filth by Nathan Ballingrud (March 29)

The original 68-page novella has a deceptively simple premise with a dark twist: a New Orleans bartender finds a lost cell phone that brings with it a series of increasingly disturbing events – adapted to the silver screen as Wounds, Armie Hammer and Dakota Johnson star in the R-Rated horror movie.

Wounds Official Trailer [HD] 2019 Expect View youtu.be

4. Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pritchett (May 31)

Following in the footsteps of STARZ adapting Gaiman's American Gods, Amazon Prime is releasing a miniseries based on the messy apocalypse depicted in the novel of the same name. With Benedict Cumberbatch playing Satan and Frances McDormand playing God, the miniseries promises to capture the same absurdist humor as the book.

Good Omens - Official Teaser Trailer I Prime Video youtu.be

5. The Aftermath by Rhidian Brook (April 26)

War dramas tend to produce promising adaptations — they also tend to star Keira Knightley. Brook's thriller portrays the charged tension between a young English couple and a German widower and his daughter as they're forced to share a house in post-war Germany. Brook actually co-wrote the screenplay, with Alexander Skarsgård, Keira Knightley, and Jason Clarke starring in the lead roles.

The Aftermath Trailer #1 (2019) | Movieclips Trailers youtu.be

6. The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon (May 17)

After co-writing the screenplay based on her popular novel Everything, Everything, Yoon co-wrote the adaptation of her most recent New York Times Bestseller. Natasha and Daniel narrate their experiences as they try to fall in love despite Natasha's family facing deportation back to Jamaica.

THE SUN IS ALSO A STAR - Official Trailer youtu.be


Meg Hanson is a Brooklyn-based writer, teacher and jaywalker. Find Meg at her website and on Twitter @megsoyung.


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dakota johnson talks ageisim

Dakota Johnson talks ageism in the “fucking brutal” movie industry, and about how proud she is to have starred in 50 Shades of Grey, during a candid interview with Vogue UK.

50 Shades was pretty much universally savaged by the critics, the movie scored a paltry 25% positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes, who analyzed 234 of the reviews and summarized:

Critics Consensus: While creatively better endowed than its print counterpart, Fifty Shades of Grey is a less than satisfying experience on the screen.

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Despite the poor reviews, 50 Shades was a box office hit, earning over $570 million worldwide—and, Johnson proudly stands by the movie, insisting she has no regrets over her role as Anastasia Steele.

In fact, Johnson says, she’s grateful for the doors it has since opened for her—which is just as well really, seeing as she is contractually locked in to star in the two upcoming sequels, Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed.

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Johnson tells Vogue:

I'm proud of Fifty Shades of Grey. I don't need to distance myself from that. The more work I do, the more the general public sees the different things I can do. Do I think it opened doors? Yeah. More people know my name.

Dakota Johnson dared to bare all in her role as Anastasia Steele in 50 Shades of Grey

However, despite the movie making her a household name, Johnson—who is currently starring opposite Johnny Depp, playing the downtrodden wife of career criminal Whitey Bulger, in Black Mass—admits that she still suffers from insecurity, and fears that she’ll be tossed aside by the “cut-throat” industry she works in, especially as she gets older.

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The 26-year-old cites the example of her mother, Melanie Griffith, and grandmother, Tippi Hedren, as victims of Hollywood’s rampant ageism.

Johnson tells Vogue:

Why isn't my mother in movies? She's an extraordinary actress! Why isn't my grandmother in movies? This industry is fucking brutal.

No matter how tough you are, sometimes there's the feeling of not being wanted. It's absurd and cut-throat.

Whenever I have downtime, I'm unsure that I will ever work again. I don't know what it is, but it's a definite thing that happens to me.

As Popdust previously reported, Johnson’s mom knows only too well the pressure actresses—and women in general—are under to adhere to the Hollywood standard of “young is beautiful.”

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Last month, Griffith, 58, became the target of nasty little anonymous trolls, after committing what appears, in the social media world, to be the ultimate sin for any woman over the age of 21—posting a photo of her bare legs on her Instagram account.

She was quickly inundated with misogynistic and nasty comments from the seemingly never ending sewer of haters out there, criticizing her appearance and pulling her to shreds.

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Griffith refused to just take it on the chin though, instead she hit back at the trolls, posting a close-up photo of her face, which she captioned, “Here ya go. Unfiltered. I’m 58. And I’m in Hawaii Five O playing Scott Caan’s Mom. Go ahead… Say some more mean things. Merry Christmas.”

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