We’re celebrating Pride Month in June but will continue to read with pride all year long here at the Texas Book Festival. LGBTQ+ voices deserve every platform possible to share their stories, including books, film, TV, theatre, and podcasting. Whether based in reality or fiction, we value all stories to build community and support systems encouraging diversity and inclusiveness. Today, we’re talking about film and TV! There is a lot brewing in Tinseltown, and I feel that LGBTQ+ stories are shining and winning more than ever. New talent (in front of and behind the screen) are given more opportunities to bring their stories to life and I’m here for every chance to learn and uplift.
There are a plethora of books that have been adapted for film and television over the years and I am always fascinated by the changes made to effectively reach audiences who are experiencing these stories cinematically. Sometimes new plot points are added to the story and sometimes plot points are cut for time. Maybe we’ll meet new characters based on a mashup of multiple original characters. There may be a change in setting or the time period. With that said, film and TV adaptations do sometimes recreate page-for-page beats for the screen, but oftentimes what we see is stylistically different from what we read. That’s not necessarily a bad thing and as an avid couch potato, I encourage these changes if that makes the experience all the more enjoyable.
As book readers, we can decide whether these choices work or if they do the original story justice. What I love about film and TV adaptations is that they give books a second chance at life. No matter the medium, if I like a story and care about the characters involved, I am going to consume it in any form that I can. The benefit of adaptations is that there is an opportunity to see our favorite books brought to life on screen and possibly discover new books after learning that they’ll be getting the Hollywood treatment.
Below are books that have recently been adapted for film, TV, and streaming or are underway soon. As we continue to cope with shifting production and release schedules due to the pandemic, I want to share the stories that are right at our fingertips. As always, please feel free to share more titles in the comments on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Love, Victor (available on Hulu)
Becky Albertalli’s novel Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda was adapted to film in 2018 as Love, Simon starring Nick Robinson. The novel now has a spin-off series, Love, Victor, which recently premiered its second season on Hulu starring Michael Cimino. If you love rom-coms and rom-dram(a)s, you’ll love Victor and his band of friends.
Behind Her Eyes (available on Netflix)
Sarah Pinborough’s novel Behind Her Eyes was recently adapted to series for Netflix. The story takes viewers for a thrilling ride and ends with a twist (or two) that dares you to rewatch from the beginning and put on your best detective hat.
Eternals (in theaters November 5th)
Based on the comic book series of the same name, the film (directed by Oscar-winner Chloé Zhao) is part of the MCU’s Phase 4 and will feature the first openly gay superhero in a Marvel movie.