You might remember seeing The Mortal Instruments or A Series of Unfortunate Events in theaters and you undoubtedly know that both are based on wildly popular book series. That’s why it was a shock that both films had a lackluster box office reception. Normally, when a movie doesn’t live up to the fans’ expectations, the source material doesn’t get a second chance from Hollywood. Recently, however, ABC Family and Netflix have decided to give these two stories a second chance to succeed on the small screen.
Now, Shadowhunters will be able to spend more time explaining the origins of the Shadow World that it was unable to do within the two hours that were given for The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones on the new ABC Family show helmed by action vet McG. Netflix’s new version of A Series of Unfortunate Events will finally get to retell the Baudelaire orphans’ journey of living with eccentric relatives, and avoiding Count Olaf who goes to any length to steal their fortune.
The revival of these two great franchises made us think about a few other popular adaptations that didn’t do as well as expected as films, which ultimately led to discontinuing the series. This occurrence leaves droves of great stories untold on the screen! So, here is a list of movie adaptations that we think would work well as TV series and deserve a second chance.
The 2006 movie was based on the first book in Christopher Paolini’s series, The Inheritance Cycle. The filmmakers attempted to fit a 500-page book into a 90 minute movie, and as a result, left out several important characters and crucial plot points, leaving many fans disappointed with the film. This series has four books and fans would love to see them all on film! With the success of Game of Thrones, fantasy adaptations are at the height of their popularity, meaning it might be the perfect time to bring Eragon to TV sets.
2. Beautiful Creatures
After the success of Twilight, it felt like every supernatural YA romance series was being optioned for film. One of them, the Caster Chronicles, followed the romance between caster Lena and regular southern boy Ethan. The film had a lot of potential with an all-star supporting cast including Jeremy Irons, Viola Davis, Emmy Rossum, and Emma Thompson, but left fans underwhelmed in addition to receiving mixed reviews from critics. The film series did not continue, but with such a great storyline and large fan base it could easily become a successful TV series!
3. Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging
This was an extremely popular, witty book series that found success in the U.K. and was adapted into a movie. It was later released in the U.S. on Nick at Nite, TEENick and DVD. While the movie seemed to satisfy fans, it was only based on two of the ten Confessions of Georgia Nicolson books. With 8 more books of YA comedy gold, there is still so much more of the story to be told! Who doesn’t want more Georgia Nicholson?! Cue TV show!
4. Vampire Academy
Vampire Academy, another popular vampire book series, was made into a movie after the success of Twilight. Brothers Mark Waters, who directed Mean Girls, and Daniel Waters, who wrote Heathers, brought it to the silver screen. With the Waters’ good track record, the film seemed promising but somehow fell flat. Vampires in a boarding school would easily make for good TV – we’re sure young audiences everywhere would love to tune in every week for the supernatural teen angst!
5. The Clique
The Clique was a direct to DVD movie that was executive produced by Tyra Banks. It was based on the fifteen book series that also spawned five book spin-off series. It revolved around privileged kids attending elite private schools, who did conniving things to the each other (think Blair Waldorf and her minions). Gossip Girl became an addictive TV series, so why not The Clique? In fact, the books were basically Gossip Girl, but for a younger audience. Since there were so many books, it offers a lot of already developed material for TV writers and could be a hit for a channel like TEENick.
6. The Chronicles of Narnia
Audiences loved the first The Chronicles of Narnia movie, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, but many did not feel the same way about the sequels. A fourth movie has been in development for years. However, at this point, it doesn’t seem like it’s happening. The beloved book series by C.S. Lewis, if done right, would make a perfect TV series that any age group could enjoy.
7. Percy Jackson & the Olympians
Percy Jackson showed promise due to the popular fantasy source material and its well-known cast, consisting of Logan Lerman as the titular character with a supporting cast of Sean Bean, Pierce Brosnan, Steve Coogan, Rosario Dawson, Kevin McKidd and Uma Thurman. Unfortunately, the second movie did not do well, dooming the last three books’ chance to be told on the big screen. A TV show would give more time to develop the characters and plot. For example, audiences would see Percy train at Camp Half-blood and also go on his quests.
8. The Golden Compass
The His Dark Materials books were as successful as Harry Potter, so it only seemed right that this would be made into a film franchise. However, when the movie finally arrived, the critics gave negative reviews and the fans were upset that the film took out all of the controversial religious and philosophical elements that made the series so special. As a TV series, it would be able to explore all that was left out of the movie in depth and make it as unique as the books.
9. The Green Lantern
Superhero movies typically do well in theaters, but the The Green Lantern failed to meet box office expectations. The movie was predicted to make about $500 million, but only grossed $219 million. Many attribute this to the casting of Ryan Reynolds and feel like he wasn’t the perfect fit for The Green Lantern (however, most are excited to see him as Deadpool!). Now is a time when superheroes are finding more success than ever on the small screen, thanks to The CW and Greg Berlanti who created Arrow and The Flash. This could be a great option for The Green Lantern, especially since the movie was written and produced by Berlanti.
10. I Am Number Four
The teen sci-fi movie I Am Number Four, starring Alex Pettyfer, is one that many forget about. Most people didn’t even know it was based on a book, let alone a series. The story is about aliens and their guardians hiding on earth from intergalactic bounty hunters. In order to be killed, they must be done in numerical order. Unfortunately, the movie didn’t do well and fans were left wanting more of the story. The Lorien Legacies are a part of a seven-book deal, with the sixth one to be released in early September. With so much material left, a TV series would be a great fit.
Do you agree with our 10 choices for movie adaptations that should be revived on TV? Sound off in the comments and make sure to support the projects you love on The IF List!