Agents and producers detail “frenzy” to adapt popular books for television

Netflix adapts The problem of the three bodies, Disney + adapts Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Apple TV + adapts the Foundation series, and so on… The streaming wars have created a new battleground in the entertainment industry: the quest for rights to popular books. (The phenomenal success of Game Of Thrones, adapted from George RR Martin A song of ice and fire books, probably didn’t hurt either.) Studios, streamers, and networks are looking for great intellectual property to adapt into series and movies, and the ready-to-go content offered by books is a great place to start research.

A recent Daily Screen The report delves into the problem, with agents and producers exploring the quest to secure rights in a highly competitive market. Its dark materials Executive producer Jane Tranter likens the fight to “sharks circling a baby seal”, noting that “there is absolute binge eating.”

Hollywood struggles to convert popular books into movies, series

In the past, getting the rights to books could mean spending something in the lower four digits, but according to Jill Gillett, co-head of the book-film / TV division at WME, “some of them are now in the lower six. upper digits. . “

Massive properties like The the Lord of the Rings can order even larger numbers. Amazon has pushed the boundaries by paying $ 250 million for the rights to the franchise, which it is now adapting into a TV show.

The advantage of acquiring rights to books is that studios don’t have to worry about licensing because they are working directly with the authors or their representatives. It also comes with the possibility of extension. Netflix’s deal with Bridgerton author Julia Quinn is a prime example of how book rights can lead to a larger universe. Executive Producer Shonda Rhimes is already planning original stories set in the world of Bridgerton which are totally unique to Netflix, so even when all eight books are adapted, there will still be stories to tell.

The lure of finding books to adapt is a global affair. “Right now people – especially streamers – tend to be looking for very propulsive and entertaining fiction,” Gillett said. “We are always looking for what can play internationally, even if it is well anchored in the United States and that it is an American production.

With so many books hitting the shelves every week, there is an endless supply of possibilities for studios and streamers. The challenge is to find the next big property to take off Bridgerton made for Netflix. The streamer is hoping their next adaptation of Sarah J. Maas’ A court of thorns and roses will hit big with audiences, given that Mass’s work comes with a ready-made fan base.

As the number of streams continues to rise, expect to see more book adaptations than ever before. The market is hot and studios are willing to pay to make sure they have exclusive rights to what they hope will be the next big thing.

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