Book to screen

Film and TV adaptations we’re excited about in 2024

Books are a ripe source of inspiration for new films and TV shows. Here are the nine adaptations we're most excited for in 2024.

Katie Russell
Image credit: Ryan MacEachern/Penguin

Sometimes a story is made for the screen. Maybe it’s a heartbreaking romance like One Day or Me Before You, a heart-pounding thriller predisposed to jump scares, like The Shining or The Haunting of Hill House, or a chilling and poignant work of historical fiction, like the Martin Amis novel turned Oscar-winning film The Zone of Interest.

Either way, books are ripe source material for film and TV projects. It might explain why so many producers were at this year’s London Book Fair – all looking for the next big thing.

2024 is already set to be a great year for book-to-screen adaptations, with bestselling books being transformed into binge-worthy series and blockbuster films. Below, we’ve rounded up the books to read before (or after) seeing them on screen – because everyone knows the book is always better…

Book-to-screen adaptations in 2024

The book: Patricia Highsmith’s iconic 1955 novel introduces Tom Ripley, a down-on-his-luck con artist who is sent to Italy to find a wealthy man’s playboy son, Dickie, and bring him back to America. Ripley is fascinated by Dickie and his high-society lifestyle, and he goes to extreme lengths to preserve his newfound status when he risks losing it.

The show: The Talented Mr. Ripley has been adapted into a TV show, Ripley, which aired on Netflix on 4th April, 2024. The show, which is shot in black and white, stars Andrew Scott as the lead, with Dakota Fanning and Johnny Flynn in supporting roles.

The book: Solène Marchand is a 39-year-old single mum caught up in a whirlwind romance with Hayes Campbell, the 20-something lead singer in a band. But can their love withstand their age gap, competing priorities, and his obsessive fanbase? The Idea Of You was published in 2017 but became a word-of-mouth hit during the pandemic. Some readers theorised that Hayes was based on Harry Styles, but author Robinne Lee told Vogue that Hayes’ character had many influences – from Prince Harry and Benedict Cumberbatch to ex-boyfriends and her husband (as well as Harry Styles).

The film: The movie adaptation, starring Anne Hathaway as Solène and Nicholas Galitzine as Hayes, will be out on Prime Video on 2nd May, 2024. Judging by the trailer, we can expect chemistry, heartache, and a very catchy soundtrack.

The book: Erin Doom’s novel Fabbricante di Lacrime was a number-one bestseller in Italy when it was published in 2021. Now, the YA romantasy title has been translated into English for the first time. Nica is a teenager who had a traumatic upbringing in an orphanage, alongside her nemesis Rigel. When the pair are adopted, they are bound by their shared emotional trauma, as well as a forbidden love for each other.

The film: Erin Doom’s book has been adapted into an Italian film, starring Simone Baldasseroni and Caterina Ferioli, which was released on Netflix on 4th April, 2024. Within three days of its release, it was number one in the Netflix charts.

The book: Amor Towles’ 2016 historical novel is surprisingly uplifting, despite its subject matter. Set in 1922, against the backdrop of the Russian revolution, it sees aristocrat Count Alexander Rostov living under indefinite house arrest in the attic room of a luxury hotel. From his gilded cage, Count Rostov has a front-row seat to Russia's decades of upheaval and, through his interactions with an eclectic cast of characters, learns to build a life of purpose.

The show: A Gentleman in Moscow is now an eight-episode series on Paramount+, first released on 29th March, 2024. Ewan McGregor plays the leading role of Count Alexander Rostov and Johnny Harris plays Osip, the Bolshevik official determined to have him killed.

The book: Booker Prize-winner Bernardine Evaristo’s 2013 novel follows 74-year-old Barrington Jedidiah Walker, who's been a local character in Hackney since the 1960s. But Barrington leads a double life: he’s married to his deeply religious wife, Carmel, while having an affair with his childhood friend, Morris. Groundbreaking and heartbreaking in equal measure, Mr Loverman is a sensitive exploration of sexuality and Britain’s older Caribbean community.

The series: Mr Loverman will be coming to the BBC later this year as an eight-part drama. Its cast includes Lennie James as Barrington, Sharon D. Clarke as his wife Carmel, and Ariyon Bakare as Morris.

The book: Harlan Coben's well-earned reputation as “master of the double twist” makes his work ripe for screen adaptations, and his 2016 novel Fool Me Once is no exception. Maya thought she had watched her husband die. But two weeks later, while checking the nanny-cam footage in her home, she watches her husband on camera, playing with their 2-year-old daughter. Now, Maya is forced to question everything – and everyone.

The show: You might be among the millions of viewers who already binged the eight-part drama in the blurry first days of 2024. It launched on Netflix on New Year's Day and received over 98 million views in its first three months – making it the sixth most popular Netflix show of all time. Michelle Keegan plays the lead role of Maya, with a strong supporting cast that includes Joanna Lumley and Richard Armitage.

The book: Unlike the other titles on this list, Argylle is not a direct book-to-screen adaptation. Instead, the 2024 book is a standalone spy thriller written by “Elly Conway” – a fictional writer who is a character in the film version. The Argylle book – which was actually written by Terry Hayes and Tammy Cohen – follows the eponymous agent’s attempts to stop a Russian magnate from getting his hands on old Nazi treasure. While you can enjoy Argylle as a book or film, we find that watching and reading this globe-trotting spy thriller enriches the overall experience.

The film: Matthew Vaughn’s Argylle has an impressively star-studded cast, from Henry Cavill to Dua Lipa, and a fun premise: spy novelist Elly Conway is drawn into the real world of espionage when she learns that her novels predict the future. The film came out in cinemas in February 2024, but is now available to stream on Apple TV+.

The book: Everyone’s favourite singleton returned in 2013, in Helen Fielding’s third book in the Bridget Jones series. Following the death of Mark Darcy, Bridget is a 51-year-old single mother trying to navigate the world of social media, dating apps, and casual affairs. Like previous books in the series, it’s a timely story told with a refreshing sense of humour.

The film: Technically, the fourth film comes out in early 2025, as opposed to 2024, but much of the cast has already been announced. Renée Zellweger will reprise her Oscar-nominated role as Bridget Jones; Hugh Grant is set to return as the rakish Daniel Cleaver, and Emma Thompson is back as the no-nonsense doctor first seen in Bridget Jones's Baby. Chiwetel Ejiofor will be joining the cast, too, and One Day’s Leo Woodall will play Bridget’s younger love interest. It has not yet been announced whether Colin Firth will return as Mark Darcy, or how closely the plot of the film will follow that of the book.

The book: In the 1960s, American writer Truman Capote befriended a group of beautiful and influential women in high society - and then betrayed them. Biographer Laurence Leamer lifted the lid on this scandal in his book, Capote's Women, which has now been adapted into the TV series Feud: Capote vs The Swans. If you've read the factual account and want the chance to escape further into this glittering world, we recommend Swan Song, a fictionalised reimagining of the feud. This 2019 book, which was long-listed for the Women's Prize for Fiction, imagines the inner workings of one of the 20th century's greatest writers, and considers what could have driven him to commit the ultimate act of betrayal.

The series: Feud: Capote vs. The Swans premiered on Hulu in January this year but has recently been added to Disney+. It boasts a star-studded cast (Naomi Watts, Diane Lane, Demi Moore, Molly Ringwald and more) and follows a group of socialites who vow to take revenge on Truman Capote after he spills their secrets to the press.

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