Although there are many worthy books which could be included in this article, I am a literature buff, so I have picked some of the best American classics. These books had a great impact during their time and are still relevant today, that is why I believe that these books should be made into screenplays.
Kate Chopin’s 1899 novella, The Awakening, has already been made into a movie called “Grand Isle” in 1991, but I think that an updated version would bring to light the themes in this novel and would make it more accessible to today’s audiences. The story revolves around Edna and her husband, but slowly morphs into a journey of self-discovery through an affair. In the end, Edna is not happy with either of the lives that she has laid out before her, and chooses to end it all. Sandra Bullock and Billy Bob Thornton, I believe would play the Pontelliers well, with Johnny Depp playing Robert, although I’m not sure how the chemistry between them would work. I would pick Kathryn Bigelow as a director because I think that a woman’s perspective is important in building the overall energy and attitude of the film.
If Beale Street Could Talk
This novel, written by James Baldwin in 1974, is about a man who is wrongfully accused of rape and the family that tried to help him. The family is that of his girlfriend’s and while he is in jail, she finds out that she is pregnant. They all work really hard to try to find out the truth and to try to raise the bail money to get Fonnie out before the baby is born. It is unique that in the end of the novel, Fonnie is not out of jail. This has great significance because it shows the reader that this type of discrimination continues to occur and will for a long time into the future. I would cast Mekhi Phifer as Fonnie and Jennifer Hudson as Tish in this movie. Spike Lee would make a good director for this movie.
Richard Wright wrote this novel in 1952. I feel that this book would make a good movie in this political and economic climate. Protests are very common these days and the theme would fit right in. For the main character, I would pick Denzel Washington, which might seem like a very stereotypical role for him, but I don’t think that anyone could play the part better. The actor who plays it requires charisma and emotional depth. Quentin Tarantino would make a fun director because he has crazy visions when it comes to bringing movies to life. I think he could make this story appeal to all kinds of audiences.
These are my picks for the top three books that I would like to seen turned into movies. I hope you check out these novels and see that they are not only enjoyable reads, but have timeless messages that anyone can relate to.