What Books Would You Like To See Turned Into A Film?

What Books Would You Like To See Turned Into A Film?

Image: Dune/IMDB

The first trailer for Annihilation dropped overnight. It’s an adaption of the VanderMeer books, which raises the questions: which books would you want to see get the film treatment that haven’t already?

Something I’d like to see get a reboot, only because it’s been so long, is the Dune novels. The movie was such a hokey affair – and so drawn out, oh my God – that it could use a slightly darker, less quirky remake.

Another book that I’ve been waiting for a while to get made into a film is finally progressing a bit further: William Gibson’s Neuromancer. It will still be a while before that appears, because Tim Miller is working with James Cameron on a Terminator movie first, before bringing Neuromancer to the big screen.

Something that would need a good bit of work, but could be interesting, is an expanded film on the I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream short story. Whether Harlan Ellison would approve is another matter – he’s notoriously protective of his work, which could make negotiations difficult.

What books would you like to see on the big screen – or get remade?


    • Mixed feelings on this. My favourite book but I’d be worried it’d get a terrible film translation. I do agree that the Coen Bro’s would probably be the best to give it a shot.

      Just keep James Franco the fuck away from it.

  • I’d like to see the Amtrak Wars series (Apparently an Australian company has had this optioned since 2007) or anything by Robin Hobb get made into a movie.

  • Wow neuromancer would be mindblowing if they keep to the story. I actually think count zero would make a better action film, but starting with neuromancer would be great. Gotta nail that atmosphere.

    And yeah, a really tough gritty version of Dune would be totally amazing.

    • I worry that the interesting bits of Neuromancer have probably been plundered so much already that an actual adaptation would feel generic and underwhelming. Then again, it’s been a very long time since I read it. Maybe only the generic bits have stuck with me.

      • It’s an interesting one. It feels like technology has kinda caught up with Neuromancer, so a lot of the amazing visionary stuff about the internet, VR, hacking and whatnot are a bit less mind blowing 30-something years later. I think there’s probably still enough there that it’ll make for a fun movie, but it’s unlikely to be the ground-breaker that it might have been back before, say, that movie that ripped off half its concepts right down to the name of the global computer network.

        Seeing we’re getting a Ready Player One movie, maybe the time is right for a Snow Crash adaption. I’d love to see how someone could pull that strange mess of a book into a coherent 2 hours of screen time.

    • There was talk of ‘At the Mountains of Madness’ getting made into a movie, which is my favourite Lovecraft story…

      … and apparently Ridley Scott fucked us. Prometheus was such a disaster that the studios shied away from another ‘Humans are actually bred by ancient aliens’ story, and the project was put on hold indefinitely.

      • Guillermo del Toro has been trying to make this movie for years, but the studios have been reluctant because he is pitching it as R-rated.

        Hopefully with the success of Logan and Deadpool he may have more success in the future.

    • Oh hey, another Clive Barker fan! I feel he is criminally underrepresented when it comes to top notch authors, though obviously his horror niche doesn’t make that easy. I’d personally love to see Cabal.

      • Ugh. Cabal. Books of Blood, yeah? They were all so good. I just think he straddles the line between horror and fantasy with a deft hand. Very much in the vein of Stephen King, but I’d wager a little more weird and wonderful.

      • There was a film translation of Cabal. It was called Nightbreed. It’s been decades since I’ve seen it, so I couldn’t tell you whether it was much good, but it had lots of fun monsters makeup at least.

  • Oops forgot to add my own. A film drawing from the Cugel books by Jack Vance (Eyes of the Overworld, Cugels story) with an ensemble cast across Cugel’s various exploits would be my dream film. Or the Demon Princes with well-cast villains for the 5 slavers (eg, an evil Jim Carey as Howard Alan Treesong??) as a Netflix series?

    • I would watch the hell out of that if done right, I doubt they could properly balance out the violence and the kid friendly elements on screen though.

  • A decent Dune would be nice (Jodorowsky’s…). I think Hollywood is busy adapting tic tac toe for the big screen at the moment though.

  • Seen as Netflix has got a Witcher series covered, I’d love to see a series based on the Eternal Champion by Michael Moorcock.

    • Just. No.
      Started great,then shifted through good, competent, okay, mediocre – then proceeded to wedge itself further up its own arse with each book. Not even Sanderson could polished that turd.

      • The entire idea of a reinterpretation is that they can ignore the unnecessary parts of the source material (and, as you noted, there was alot of unnecessary crap in the books). Imagine if you hadn’t had the entire Masema sub-plot, and Perrin hadn’t chased Faile and the rebel Aiel for like… 3 books. A TV adaptation would provide the opportunity for the entire series to be rewritten as well as the first couple of books, before the bloat set in.

        I disagree about the ending too. I think Sanderson’s books were easily in the same league as the first few books in the series.

  • I was going to say The Sisters Brothers by Patrick Dewitt, but I just looked and it’s in the works now.
    John C Reilly, Joaquin Phoenix & Jake Gyllenhaal starring so hopefully it’s good.

  • I’d like to see someone do an adaptation of The Dark Tower.


    *clamps hands over ears and runs from the room in tears*

      • There were plans to spin off a series from the movie (if they had actually made it). But I think those plans are up in the air now after the non-existent movie tanked.

        I guess they might have got some box office if they’d actually made the movie.

        • Reminds me of Battlefield Earth. Apparently John Travolta was so confident that he was already planning the sequel before the movie came out, and we all know how that turned out

    • I boycotted it, have the first line of the Gunslinger tattooed on my arm, am a fantasy author specialising in novels and screenplays… and believe I have this 😀

      Anyone got HBO’s number?

  • The Mistborn series by Brandon Sanderson and The name of the wind/The Kingkiller series by Patrick Rothfuss

    • Mistborn awwww yissss

      I think The Reckoners series would also be absolutely amazing. There are so many superhero movies coming out over the next few years, it’d be awesome having the trope inverted.

    • When I read Mistborn a couple years ago, I pictured an anime series moreso than a live action. Just because of the ridiculous (not in a bad way!) jumping around during battles. It wouldn’t look so hoke-y in an anime.

  • I don’t know if you guys have read ‘The Sparrow’ by Maria Dore, and it also has a satisfying sequel and ending. Definitely a possible movie.

    Also in terms of space opera, Peter F Hamilton’s ‘The Night’s Dawn’ mega books. One of the most entertaining scifi series I’ve ever read.

      • I enjoyed the Commonwealth series too but not as much as Night’s Dawn. Much as i liked the political drama (and he writes that stuff well!), i loved the action orientation of Night’s Dawn. I mean, they’re all great. I’ve bought the latest couple books but haven’t yet made a start.

  • The Empire Trilogy by Raymond E Feist and Janny Wurts. It would look magnificent with its blend of East Asian and Mayinztec styles and architecture.

      • +1 for The Magician, I heard Feist talk about a show/film for his work, he’s still trying to “find the right deal” to get it going though

      • Yeah Magician is amazing. Holds a special magic that isn’t quite there for the other books in the series (though I still enjoyed many of them).

      • I thought Magician had been greenlit into being made into a series. Could be wrong. Its a ‘verse definitely ripe for it though.

        A lot of David Eddings stuff would work as well for the same reasons.

        • No current schedule unfortunately.
          Either the empire series of apprentice/master would be the best i reckon

          then again… the serpent war saga was also unreal when the tsurani invade midkemia.
          Rage of a Demon King would make an epic battle

      • I think it could work if there’s just a mysterious war in the background that’s more or less just used politically.
        The main character had doesn’t really have any direct contact with the war, and a lot of detail can be filled when Kevin appears on the scene.

    • I am neck-deep in the series at the moment, but the Empire books were incredible. I don’t know how well it would work without having the first Magician triology come first?

  • For Science Fiction/fact….Arthur C Clarke’s Rama series, though Clarke didn’t write all 4 books solo. According to Wikipedia, there has been a movie planned for a VERY long time with Morgan Freeman producing it. It’s been in “development hell”….Have a read of the Wiki entry.
    If you’re a Sci Fi fan, you may have read it, if you aren’t and haven’t read it….go find it and chip away at it slowly. This is what a true space opera is.
    When I played games like Mass Effect and saw Interstellar, there were so many similarities with how the book read to me and the scope of the story. It was like something starting very small but ending so much more expanded by the last game or last book.

    On a different Fantasy note, Wiedźmin…for you uneducated peasants, “The Witcher” series of stories and novels by Andrzej Sapkowski ( Yes I did have to copy and paste there…)
    Because these days you can’t hit a Witcher game forum without seeing “Yeah but I’m so much more knowledgeable than you are, YOU don’t know about Geralt… because….I read the books, you Dotard!!!”
    Fact is, I did happen to read the books only after playing Witcher 1 and I have to admit, I’d have never had an appreciation for the games lore and backstory if I didn’t read the Witcher books. The movie would have to be faithful to the authors vision….though I’m not sure how that would work now, Andrzej Sapkowski is kinda opposed to the direction his vision has gone within the games…should have stayed on for the long haul and not just taken the “quick dollar” approach.

    I would LOVE to see both of these series of books made into movies, faithfully and close to the stories.

  • I was going to suggest a mini-series based on Dan Simmons’ The Terror – it’s the best damn horror fiction I’ve read in years – but it looks like AMC is already on the job.

    So I’ll default to Peter Benchley’s Jaws. I know that Spielberg’s adaption is revered within cinema and Benchley worked on the screenplay but the bombastic departure from the tone of the novel was too far. It’d be great to see a closer adaptation that retains the original ending and downplays some of the drama.

  • Not a movie, but I’d like to see the TV series of the Discworld Watch books actually get made. That could be a lot of fun.

    I’d also love to see a kid’s movie adaptation of “The Abradizil”. That was my favourite book when I was younger.

    I was also really disappointed with the adaptation of “On Stranger Tides” into a terrible “Pirates of the Caribbean” movie. In my dream world we’d have a more faithful adaptation.

      • There were animated series of Soul Music and Wyrd Sisters. They were pretty good for what they were.

        There’s been a Watch series in development for years now, but I’m not sure how it’s going.

  • I wouldn’t mind seeing Monstress in action, its structure thus far has been all road trip which would translate very well to movie format.

  • There’s a few of Neal Stephenson’s novels I reckon would make good movies:

    Snow Crash
    The Diamond Age
    …and the one about the vagabound guy? History of the world or something.

  • I would really like to see Isaac Asimov’s Foundations and Empire series with the robots Giskard (who reads minds) and Daneel, with Elijah Bailey.

  • Joe Dever’s Lone Wolf.Perdido Street Station.Name of the Wind.Magician.Mistress of the Empire.Way of Kings.These would probably be better on tv though.

  • This is really strange, I came here specifically to say Neuromancer, didn’t know they were working on it. If it’s done right it could be an incredible movie.

    I also just finished Ancillary Justice, haven’t read the sequels yet, but the core of Ancillary justice would be amazing if done right, plus you’d have freedom of gender for the majority of casting decisions which I imagine would be quite a boon when making a film.

    I’m not sure that it’d necessarily make for a good film, but I’d be really interested in how The Left Hand of Darkness would be adapted if it were.

    The one I’d most like to see though would be a proper adaptation of The 13 and a half lives of Captain Bluebear. I have no idea how they’d market it or who would watch it out of those that hadn’t read it, but it’d be pretty phenomenal with the right team working on it.

  • I’d love to see a TV show based on the Lightbringer series by Brent Weeks. Would need to have a massive budget for the CGI though.

  • The Bartimaeus trilogy by Jonathan Stroud. Seriously this would be such a killer trilogy or series even… The ending of the trilogy is still one of the best endings I’ve ever read / seen. The story is pretty much a harry Potter like story except darker and where magicians are the ruling class and non magic users commoners. Cannot recommend enough. The development of the two main characters over the 3 books is incredible

  • An adaptation based on the house in ‘House of Leaves’. The book is a Matryoshka doll of narratives, but seeing the ominous, non-euclidean house in film would be intriguing – If done right.

  • I’d like to add N.K. Jemisin’s trilogy starting with The Fifth Season but I am not sure how you can do it justice. The amazing world, races and powers could be put on screen (although it would be a challenge to explain everything going on) but the style of prose would be lost, and that is half of the magic of those books.
    Anyone else read them?

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