I’m proud to be one of the stops in the Kid Lit Giveaway Hop Holiday Extravaganza, hosted by Youth Literature Reviews and Mother Daughter Book Reviews . Please check the linky list at the bottom of this post: EVERY stop will have a YA-themed giveaway! Including this one: I’m offering a hardcover copy of Shiver, written by the inspiring Maggie Stiefvater (enter the rafflecopter at the end of this post).
And now, let’s discuss my two favorite subjects: movies and YA!
Here’s a list of adored and best-selling YA series: Twilight, Harry Potter, The Hunger Games, The Mortal Instruments, Beautiful Creatures, The Host.
The first 3 series have produced the top 15 YA-book adaptation movies ever. The lowest grossing movie in the list is the original Twilight, with a $192 million domestic box-office.
The first movie for each of the latter 3 series generated $31 million, $19 million, and $26 million, respectively. This is despite The Host and Twilight having the same author, the amazing Stephenie Meyer.
Why this discrepancy?
One argument is that the Big 3 group has larger reader bases than then latter 3. This accounts for some, but all not the difference in ticket sales.
Maybe the Big 3 books lend themselves to a more cinematic approach? This may be the case of Harry Potter, but the other two series contain large passages of internal monologue, and are written from a 1st person POV, which suggests they would be harder, not easier, to adapt to the big screen. In addition, the latter 3 books have many action sequences.
The answer may be related to the middle-tier kids books, which also include Middle Grade fare: Eragon, Percy Jackson, Ender’s Game, Bridge to Therabithia, Hugo, The Spiderwick Chronicles. The box office receipts for these movies are pretty consistent, ranging from $55 million to $88 million.
Maybe the books in the last list appeal to kids and tweens mostly. They are family-friendly fantasy/sci-fi movies. The Small 3 group above may appeal to teens only, and may not have reached a critical readership mass to break through and become pop culture phenomena like the Big 3.
How does the Big 3 group manage to pull people though? Those stories and characters have a huge adult following. Not only that, but maybe the teens and tweens of those adult fans have been introduced to those series by enthusiastic parents. The editors of Entertainment Weekly and similar online and print magazines are most likely to be influenced by adult fans than by a teen-only fan base. This generates more buzz, more awareness, and more curious readers and moviegoers.
Where is the much-anticipated adaptation of Divergent landing? What about the upcoming movies for Vampire Academy, The Giver, and The Maze Runner? Will they capture an adult audience as well?
And what’s your favorite YA-themed (fantasy or sci-fi) movie?
(I purposely omitted The Chronicles of Narnia series. The grosses for the movies are all over the place, and I couldn’t come up with a reasonable explanation for their varying performance.)
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