It is universally accepted and no longer a surprise in this day and age to find out that your current favourite movie or TV series was a book first. In fact, it is almost expected. It is beautiful to watch these books and their authors finally get the recognition they deserve. However, although movie adaptations are becoming increasingly popular, people seem to be of the erroneous belief that it is a new concept. Books have been heavily inspiring the movie industry for a long time now. In no particular order, here is a list of 10 oldies you did not know were adapted from books:

 1. Jurassic Park

Yes, the Jurassic Park you know and love was based off a book by Michael Crichton.

2. Shrek

This fan-favourite cartoon might have saved DreamWorks that year but more interestingly, it was based on a picture book by William Steig.


3. Pitch Perfect

This one is not for everyone but it was wildly popular during its time. If you were one of those who enjoyed it, you would be pleased to know it was based off a  book.

4. How To Train Your Dragon

If you missed out on watching this as a kid, I recommend doing so now. The first installment in this series was just the right amount of everything to make for a good cartoon. That, and it was based on the book by Cressida Cowell.

5. Fight Club

Unsurprisingly, this classic was based on a book by Chuck Palahniuk.

6. 13 Reasons Why

Considering how convoluted this series was, it should not come as a surprise that it was adapted from a book.

7. The 100

The 100 is another book-to-movie masterpiece. While it may seem farfetched that 4 books became a series with 7 seasons and a total of 100 episodes, trust me, books do better as series because movie adaptations end up leaving out one too many important details.

8. Orange Is The New Black

If you saw this one coming, you are one of the original gangsters. It was based on a book of the same name written by Piper Kerman about her experiences following conviction for a crime she did not commit. 

9. You

Caroline Kepnes sat down, created this story and published it. Less than 6 months after, it got picked for a TV adaptation and nowhere along the line has the chill factor reduced. You, both the book and series are simply works of art.

10. Gossip Girl

Nearly every girl and their mother watched this series. I can understand this coming as a surprise but it was based on books by Cecily von Ziegesar.

This list is just the tip of the iceberg. Fortunately and unfortunately, I can not go into exhaustive detail of every single movie/TV show adaptation but a few honourable mentions include: 

  • Devil Wears Prada
  • Rizzoli & Isles
  • Pretty Little Liars
  • Secret Circle
  • The Vampire Diaries
  • Bridgerton
  • Queen’s Gambit

Did any of your favourites make the list? Which ones really surprised you? Also, let me know if you think I missed any big ones.

1 Comment
  1. Temzy says

    Wow. That’s great.
    I couldn’t have guessed for a number of them.
    Great article

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