'War & Peace' TV Movie In The Works & These 7 Literary Classics Should Totally Be Next
While films released in theaters tend to get precedence when it comes to esteem and prestige, there's a lot to be said for TV movies and mini-series, which can be just as moving and spectacular as their big screen counterparts. While often they're subjects to stricter standards (ugh, FCC) and annoying commercial breaks, the content of TV movies is totally on par with bigger budget blockbusters, with the added perk that we can generally watch new releases right from the comfort of our living room couches as they air live. Plus, with mini-series, we get to enjoy it over a period of weeks. We'll get to do just that when Lifetime, A&E and History Channel air their limited series based on Tolstoy's War & Peace next year, and I can't wait to see what the networks will take on next.
War & Peace is being co-produced with The Weinstein Co. and BBC and will have an incredible cast including Gillian Anderson (I die!), Jim Broadbent, Lily James, Paul Dano and James Norton, which pretty much guarantees that this will be one incredible production. But why should the fun end there? There are plenty of literary classics that would be amazing in mini-series form and should be considered for a small screen adaptation ASAP.
Alice In Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
Yes, yes, I know there have been a bajillion movies and TV movies made about this book, but I haven't been satisfied with any of them — though the 1999 version with Tina Majorino as Alice and Whoopi Goldberg as Alice was pretty okay and probably the best of the lot. Oh, and the Disney version is amazing, clearly. I want a real mini-series that goes into the darker sides of the book without being all Tim Burton about it, so let's make it happen.
To Kill A Mockingbird - Harper Lee
Never has there been a better time to bring To Kill A Mockingbird into focus in pop culture than now. The book features such rich storytelling and deals with important issues like racial inequality and rape. It's heavy stuff, but such an important work that a mini-series could really explore.
Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
Something for the period romance fans, obviously! Jane Austen is fantastic and all, but she's been done time and time again, and we really need to figure out what's up with Heathcliffe on the small screen.
Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
Dystopian stories are MAJOR right now, so it only makes sense that Brave New World — one of the first real modern views into how scary our future could turn out to be — should pop off the page and onto our TV screens, whether in a one-off TV movie or a short mini-series. There's so much to work with there, and I think it could be really chilling.
Fahrenheit 451 - Ray Bradbury
Another scary look at what the future could be like, and another one that deserves a proper mini-series. Can you imagine how miserable a world where books are illegal would be? Ugh, I can't — but I like having to think about it because it makes me appreciate the world we live in a bit more.
The Catcher In The Rye - J.D. Salinger
I'm actually a bit shocked that this hasn't been attempted before, but given that Holden Caulfield is a bit of an unreliable narrator — and a bit annoying — I guess it's not all that surprising. While this coming-of-age story can be slightly dated, I think there's a way to make it more modern and bring this classic work to a new generation.
The Great Gatsby - F. Scott Fitzgerald
Yes, we already have a movie version of this, but other than Leonardo DiCaprio's weird dancing and the gorgeous cinematography, I do feel it missed a bit of the book's subtlety, and having a mini-series would give the story more room to breathe, which I think it desperately needs.
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