My grandfather once said, “What does your grandmother like more than one scoop of ice cream?
“Two scoops of ice cream.”
This seems to be the newfound philosophy of movie studios that hold the rights to mega-successful franchises based on books. Why make one bajillion dollars when you can make two? It’s a simple business formula. Fans will lay down their cash for a movie ticket without blinking an eye, for they are faithful to the franchise. They need to finish the story, even if they’ve already read it seventeen thousand times. So, why not make it two instead of one?
Maybe that’s why George Lucas has made so many versions of the original Star Wars trilogy: Why leave it as the original movie, when you can make the “Special Edition,” the “Really Special Edition,” and the “3-D Spectacularly Special Edition,” on DVD, Blu-ray, and vinyl (for everyone tired of watching the added-in special effects)?
Now, while I may mock the decision to make books into two films, I do understand the dilemma of fitting the whole story into one film. Both Deathly Hallows and The Hobbit can be justified. First, they are both well-written stories, and, second, they have enough happening to fill two films. Some may argue the first Deathly Hallows is a slow bit of wandering, but that’s how the book is as well. You need what you learn of Dumbledore and Voldemort’s histories, as well as the Deathly Hallows to build up to the awesome, explosive climax at Hogwarts. Also, it gives the filmmaker more time to blow up pieces of Hogwarts, spectacularly. As for The Hobbit, Peter Jackson has already established such a gorgeous and textured visual element to Middle Earth, it’s well worth venturing there twice more. Beyond that, they will be able to add in more of Bilbo’s epic journey across the Misty Mountains.
As for Breaking Dawn, I have not read New Moon, Eclipse, nor Breaking Dawn, but I have read the Wikipedia synopsis of all. Hoping that is accurate, and having read Twilight, I am still amazed that Stephanie Meyer can fit so little story into so long a book. I know I may be insulting fans, and I apologize. I’m not into the stories. Perhaps a Twilight fan could persuade me that Breaking Dawn as two films is justified, and they are welcome to in the comments below.
Having read Mockingjay, I can somewhat see if being two films. However, I think, in converting Mockinjay into a different medium, some of the times of Katniss healing from various injuring could be cut out or condensed. I’m attempting to avoid spoilers here, so I can’t fully explain. Let me note, I greatly enjoyed The Hunger Games, somewhat enjoyed Catching Fire, enjoyed the first half of Mockingjay, and was disappointed by the meandering towards the end leading to an odd, anticlimactic ending. Once again, fans of Mockingjay are welcome to persuade me otherwise, and please do so in the comments below.
My point is, while The Hunger Games film is an excellent adaptation of a great book, and I’m sure Catching Fire will be satisfactory, I’m not sure Mockingjay has enough to fill two films. I trust the screenwriter(s) are working towards that end.
A book that absolutely should be two films is Fox in Socks.
I’d suggest breaking it up as follows:
Fox In Socks 1 – Box On Knox –
Knox is stuck in a dead-end life, until the Fox in Socks comes and upends everything. (Hence, Knox on Box)
Fox In Socks 2 – Tweetle Beetle Puddle Paddle Battle
As the relationship between Fox and Knox develops, Fox leads Knox into the dark underworld of Tweetle Beetle Battles. Will Knox ever be able to return to his box?
What do you think of the plan to have Mockingjay be two films?
What other book should be two films?
What do you think of this trend in general?
Would you go to see Fox In Socks in two parts? Sound off below.
Here is the article I read from Entertainment Weekly, officially announcing Mockingjay will be two films:
For pop-culture snobs out there, here’s a fun blog post that got me thinking today: