World Book Day 2018: Harry Potter, Devdas, Haider; 10 Must Watch Movie Adaptations of all times
World Book Day is also known as World Book and Copyright Day is celebrated all across the globe today on Monday, April 23, 2018 with much reading, swapping books and maintaining silence in the libraries. Books are one of the most magical things ever created by man and holds immense wisdom and knowledge in them to last you a lifetime. Every year, this day aims to inculcate the habit of reading, promote publishing and copyright throughout the world. The event is organized by UNESCO and was first held in 1995, this date was significantly chosen as English playwright William Shakespeare today in 1616.
Books have an incredible power to transform our minds and since time immemorial words written on tablets, papyrus or pages have inspired, motivated and surprised people to do the unthinkable and the impossible. More often than not, many of our movies are inspired by some book or the other. So let’s take a look at some of the most famous and must watch movies that were adapted from books.
Devdas is a 1917 Bengali romance novel written by Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay. You might not have read the masterpiece but we are damn sure that you must have seen at least one version of the several movies that were made on the novel in languages such as Bengali, Hindi, Telugu, Tamil, Urdu, Assamese and Malayalam. The most popular ones being Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s version which featured Shah Rukh Khan, Aishwarya Bachchan and Madhuri Dixit in lead roles, alongside Anurag Kashyap's Dev D starring Abhay Deol and the iconic Dilip Kumar in the film's 1965 version.
Harry Potter Movies
JK Rowling is probably the most popular author of modern times since her Harry Potter novels have spawned a generation who proudly claim themselves to be Potterheads. The seven books of the series were adapted into eight movies for the silver screen starring Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint in lead roles.
Lord of the Rings Trilogy
The Lord of the Rings trilogy was directed by Peter Jackson and written by JRR Tolkien. The movies were a super hit that also made a clean sweep at the Academy Awards winning 17 out of the 30 that the movies were nominated for, (a record for any movie trilogy). The final installment The Return of the King won in every category that it was nominated for, winning 11 awards. The movie is impeccably made and is one of the best adaptations of all times.
Dev Anand’s Guide was adapted from RK Narayan’s novel of the same name. The Malgudi Days author gave us a book that was poignant, relevant as well as magnanimous. The book was made into the cult masterpiece starring Dev Anand and Waheeda Rehman in the lead.
William Shakespeare’s works adapted by Vishal Bharadwaj
Vishal Bharadwaj made a name for himself by adapting William Shakespeare’s tragedies Macbeth, Othello and Hamlet into mainstream Bollywood movies giving those Indian sensibilities but keeping the crux of the story as it is. He made Macbeth into Maqbool, Othello as Omkara and Hamlet as Haider. Taking mainstream Bollywood actors as leads Bharadwaj elicited such nuanced performances from them that these movies have become the milestones of their film careers.
To Kill a Mockingbird
Harper Lee’s classic To Kill a Mockingbird was adapted into a movie featuring Gregory Peck in the lead. The book, as well as the movie, was so impeccable that it fetched Peck his Academy award and made his name synonymous with the character of Atticus Finch.
Gone With the Wind
Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind is another classic movie that starred Vivien Leigh and Clark Gable in the lead roles. The novel that had the American civil war at its backdrop gave a fulfilling account of the life at the time and the misunderstood love between the protagonists is what makes the book and the movie so special.
Amrita Pritam’s book of the same name was made into a film starring Urmila Matondkar, Manoj Bajpayee and Sanjay Suri. This was one of the novels that had the India-Pakistan partition as its backdrop and brought to life the atrocities and follies that people committed in the name of religion. This was one of Urmila's best performances.
Mario Puzo’s The Godfather is a story that never becomes old. The movie was adapted from the novel but later spawned two sequels as well. Marlon Brando and Al Pacino starred in this masterpiece which is still one of the most popular adaptations of all times. The story has been adapted into several Hindi movies as well as Dayavaan and Sarkar inspired by the character of Don Corleone.
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (Trilogy)
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo is a trilogy written by Stieg Larsson. The movie stars Rooney Mara and Daniel Craig in the lead roles. The books were published posthumously in 2005 and became international bestsellers. Rooney Mara earned an Academy Award nomination for portraying the character of Lisbeth Salander, the protagonist of the trilogy.
Mahabharata and Ramayana are two Indian epics that were made into full-length television serials in the 80s and are still watched avidly on TV channels that telecast the reruns. There are numerous books that have been made into movies and even television serials and it is difficult to list all of them here.
Recently, there have been movies like Hidden Figures, Wonder, Fault in Our Stars etc which have entertained the audience but it is nearly impossible to list all of them down. However, these were a few that have stood the test of time and will probably go down in the annals of history.