From Dune to Vampire Academy: 7 Adaptations That Got a Second Chance

From Dune to Vampire Academy: 7 Adaptations That Got a Second Chance
From Dune to Vampire Academy: 7 Adaptations That Got a Second Chance

Surely you’ve seen or heard of failed book-to-film adaptations. You know that movie so unfaithful to the source material that it leaves you wondering if it was really an adaptation or if the director just took the characters’ names and inserted them into a completely new story?

This has frustrated literary fans around the world for years, and it shows no sign of ending anytime soon. Some authors are not as cautious as Neil Gaiman –which took years to let the Sandman adapt– and end up seeing their characters come to life in a crappy series or movie that no one wants to see. But not everything is lost! A failed adaptation is not the end of a saga; everything can be fixed, and that’s what publishers and streamers have done with the seven books below.


A romance involving love triangle and fantastical elements could not help but be a success in 2009, when it was published. The saga became a fever among teenagers around the world and became a best seller. The film version, however, left something to be desired in many ways. Even fans of the books agree that the 2016 adaptation was a mess and a total disaster.

The setting is not the best and the script doesn’t help at all in the chemistry between the actors. It’s the kind of movie where nothing happens most of the time, and when it does, it doesn’t make sense. But not everything is lost. The announcement of the second chance to adapt came a few weeks ago, with a series produced by Globoplay.

It has the potential to work very well! Fallen is an interesting story, with many things to explore. It would be nice to see the story in that format, because it’s possible to expand on the universe created by Lauren Kate, which clearly hasn’t been executed well before.

Vampire Academy

Despite all the criticism, Vampire Academy – Kiss of the Shadows (2014) is a decent movie. You movie buff and book fan might not agree with me, but if you were a teenager at the time the movie came out, you sure had as much fun watching it as I did!

Yes, the movie starring Zoey Deutch and Lucy Fry It wasn’t a huge success and many people even prefer to forget that it even existed, the feature only grossed US$ 15 million (R$ 77 million) at the worldwide box office, annihilating the chances of future sequels. That’s why the second adaptation has so much potential.

Vampire Academy has arrived on the North American streaming service Peacock last Thursday (15) and has already received the seal of approval from fans for delivering a story much more faithful to the original material written by Richelle Mead. The series has scripts by Julie Plec (The Vampire Diaries) and Marguerite MacIntyre (The Originals), two veterans of this vampire genre. Unfortunately, still no release date in Brazil.

Percy Jackson and the olympians

It is almost a consensus that the film adaptations of Percy Jackson were a disgrace. Put on Chris Columbus (Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone) at the helm of the debut film was a lot of appeal to create a new Harry Potterand the result was a weak film that was far from being the least bit faithful to its source work.

Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief (2010) started off wrong with a cast that was twice the age of the characters in the book. Not to mention those who were left out or simply changed their personality. The sequel, Percy Jackson and the Sea of ​​Monsters (2013), was clearly an attempt to make amends to fans. The feature began to include characters that were missing from the debut film, such as Clarisse La Rue (Leven Rambin), and they even dyed the hair of Alexandra Daddario, interpreter of Annabeth Chasewho was described as blonde in the book series by Rick Riordan.

None of this made up for the film’s absurd ending, in which the villain Luke Castellan (Jake Abel) awakens Kronos in the middle of an abandoned amusement park. The fight against the titan only happened much later in the literary series and the scene in the film only served to show the director’s clear desperation to hasten the events of the book.

After this epic failure, the Percy Jackson movie franchise was forgotten, but all is not lost for the demigods. Disney+ is now responsible for the new adaptation of the story of Poseidon’s son and has the author of the work himself in the script and production, in addition to a cast in the correct age group of the characters. The recordings have already started and the premiere forecast is for 2024.

The Mortal Instruments

The Mortal Instrumentsa series of books written by Cassandra Clare, won its first adaptation in 2013 with the film The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. The film starred lily collins (Emily in Paris) and Jamie Campbell Bower (the Vecna ​​from Stranger Things).

As much as it was not an absolute failure among fans, the films ended up not going forward, and a sequel was not even considered. Then, in 2016, the North American channel freeform launched the Shadowhunters series (2016-2019). The second adaptation of the work was successful and became one of the most watched series on Netflix..

But that wasn’t enough. The series is not completely hated, because many like it, especially those who haven’t had much contact with the books. They even made a lot of noise when Netflix announced the cancellation. Who didn’t really like the series were the fans of the original work – and the author herself.

It’s no secret that the 2013 film is Cassandra Clare’s favorite adaptation., and that Jamie Campbell Bower was the perfect Jace. The author never hid her displeasure with the series, especially in the casting of Dominic Sherwood (Hierarchy) as Jace Herondale. The fans weren’t happy either, but they found little things that made them happy.

One of the only positive points pointed out was the choice of actors. Matthew Daddario (Alec Lightwood), Harry Shum Jr. (Magnus Bane) and Emeraude Toubia (Isabelle Lightwood) who played their characters with mastery and fidelity. Now it remains to be seen if any streaming has the courage to try a third time.


With the potential to become a great new franchise like Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter, Eragon was an epic flop and shattered any plans for other films. The story created by Christopher Paolini it showed a boy who discovered a dragon egg and was taken on a fantastic and dangerous adventure.

The first attempt at adaptation came in 2006 and was directed by Stefan Fangmeier (Sea in Rage). The film only managed a 16% approval rating on the website Rotten Tomatoes and was heavily criticized for its lack of depth characters and questionable CGI character.

Now, Eragon will finally have his chance at redemption! It was recently announced that Disney+ is planning a live-action series inspired by the film. and that will have Christopher Paolini himself in the script. According to Variety, the plan is to adapt the entire franchise. Inheritance Cyclewhich begins with Eragon and continues with the books eldest, brisingr and Heritage.


The movie Dune (2021), with Timothée Chalamet and Zendaya, had barely hit theaters and was already a hit with audiences on account of its star-studded cast. But many viewers have no idea that it was the second attempt at adapting the novel by Frank Herbertpublished in 1965.

In 1984, David Lynch was responsible for the first adaptation of Dune. The filmmaker known for his surrealist films had everything to create a hit, but that’s not what happened. The film was a critical and box office failure. The specialized critics massacred the work, calling it a real mess and accusing her of having no respect for the original work.

Happily, Denis Villeneuve managed to get around the situation and practically erase this first attempt at adaptation from people’s memories. Surely no one will miss it!

The Golden Compass

The Golden Compass is the first book in the acclaimed fantasy trilogy by Philip Pullmanwhich won a film in 2007 starring Dakota Blue Richards, Nicole Kidman, Daniel Craig and Eva Green. While the film embraces the epic scale the book calls for, it failed on one basic thing: content.

The film version fails to try to erase the critical context of Pullman’s work in favor of a film “for the family”, with beautiful visuals. The last chapters of the book, the most revealing and weighty, are completely ignored. Result? A weak production, completely forgettable and that would never reach the target audience.

But in 2019, the His Dark Materials series appeared. The production, the result of a partnership between the British BBC One and the american HBOfinally lived up to the book and delivered a dark story, precisely the atmosphere presented in its original work.

The article is in Portuguese

Tags: Dune Vampire Academy Adaptations Chance

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