The website of the historical fiction writer.

The Festival of Writing 2013 Part Seven: Is Your Book a Film?

The last session I attended on Saturday was hosted by Jo Unwin. We started with everyone in the group giving a short pitch of their work, which was written up. We came back to this at the end.

There are three main forms of media: prose, theatre and screen, with each one showing drama in different ways. Novels work for displaying internal conflict, theatre uses subtext and screen uses action. Of course, some of these do overlap and those that do the best make the best adaptations.

Films, unlike books and, to a certain extent, stage plays, cost a lot of money to make and, especially in these austere times, finance can be quite hard to come by. A low budget can cost roughly £100,000 and Massive Hollywood Blockbusters can cost many millions so if you want to make one of these it’s best to become good friends with a bank manager. Having a big star can help with getting cash. Appealing to the widest audience possible (all the family) will also be a good thing to do as will writing a bestseller.

At the end of the session we went through each idea to see what sort of films they would make. Some would attract funding, to make into films while others would work as documentaries. In the Shadow of the Gods would cost quite a bit what with the scenic Scandinavian setting and longships don’t come cheap these days.


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