Film vs. Book
Artemis Fowl was a big hit back in the early 00s. Many were drawn into the tale of the 12-year-old criminal mastermind. The books were exciting, charismatic, and energetic. Although the series didn’t quite become a global phenomenon like other pre-teen books of its time (here’s looking at you, Rowling). Preteens couldn’t help but find Artemis’ shenanigans endearing. Then this year Disney Plus released an Artemis Fowl adaptation which completely alters the books.
With the first of the books being such a hit back in 2001. It was a given that nostalgic fans would rejoice at Disney’s announcement to adapt the series. That was until the film released earlier this year. The reviews were harsh, but unfortunately not completely uncalled for if you were a Fowl fan.
It’s no shocker that Disney enjoys adding their own spin to originals. It’s what makes them a great contender in the filming business. But, Disney is not immune to the odd movie flop and it appears that Artemis Fowl fell into this category according to reviews.
But why was the movie so poorly received? Although the cinematography was pretty impressive, and big names were cast. It’s the story line that caused an uproar from beloved fans.
Let’s take a look at some key differences between the first two books and the 2020 film.
Becoming a criminal mastermind
In the written series Artemis Fowl is a mini villain who gradually becomes the antihero of the story. Eoin Colfer even described the first instalment as ‘Die Hard with fairies’. Anyone who read the books knows that the twelve-year-old was a criminal genius from the get-go. Absorbed in the family business, he spent years learning how to take over from his father.
But, the film takes a different route. Artemis gets sucked into the crime world only with the disappearance of his father. Artemis Sr. (played by Colin Farrell) is taken by a mysterious hooded figure.
Artemis is also less villainous in the film. Instead, he adopts a softer approach. This does cause some confusion towards the end of the film. He is characterised as a criminal mastermind which doesn’t quite fit the bill.
Artemis is amoral from the start of the book. This makes his transition to anti-heroism that much sweeter.
The film integrates the first two books
The general layout of the film is like the timeline of the books. But it was the second novel The Artic Incident where Artemis’ father vanishes. In the first book of the series, we followed the story of how Artemis kidnapped the fairy Holly Short to steal gold.
The movie seems to incorporate the first two novels, mixing storylines in an attempt to pave a new plot. This includes swapping the villain of the second book with a mysterious figure. This doesn’t cause a harrowing issue, but it is confusing for those who read the original books.
Though, it does pave the way for a sequel.
The backstory of Holly Short
Speaking of Holly Short, Artemis Fowl(2020) has given the fairy a new backstory.
The screen adaptation shows Captain Holly to be the daughter of Beechwood Short. Beechwood is a traitor to the fairy world. Holly seeks to absolve him from blame.
Holly and Artemis’ friendship timeline also differs. The movie shows the two becoming closer as the story progresses. But they did not form a friendship until much further on in the written series.
Unfortunately, due to the changes in central plots. Holly is a less distinguished character in the film as she was in the first novel.
The customary suit outfit
The suit, which plays a huge part in Artemis Fowl’s character, doesn’t make as much of an appearance in the movie. He begins the film wearing a hooded top and jeans, gradually adopting his smarter image.
Ferdia Shaw (Artemis Fowl Jr.) portrays his character as more athletic. The book describes the preteen to be pale and out of shape, he also despises the outdoors. He chooses to spend most of his time at his computer, seeking new criminal ideas.
Perhaps Disney chose to make the lead a more relatable character.
Another of Disney’s new additions to the adaptation. The Aculous did not appear in any aspect of the original saga.
The first book follows the plot of Artemis seeking to steal gold from the fairy world. He kidnaps Holly Short in the hopes of claiming it. Yet, in the film, it is the Aculous which causes sets the premise for the movie plot. The acorn-shaped item is the key which opens a portal to the fairy world. Though, the acorn-esque style could be a discreet nod to the acorn that Holly Short uses to regain her magic.
All in all, when placed next to the books the film doesn’t quite hit the mark. But, if your childhood was not shaped by the great works of Eoin Colfer. And you are not familiar with the wonderfully-written series, then all is not lost.
As a separate entity to its original literary appearance, Artemis Fowl (2020) from Disney is action-packed. The cinematography is great, and the cast is pretty superb.
CULTURE CROSSING SCORE 3/10
Thanks for reading about how the Disney Artemis Fowl adaptation completely alters the original series. It’s currently streaming on Disney Plus. Do you agree or disagree with our points or have anything to add? If so, leave us a comment below.
Read more of our movie and literature crossovers HERE
Read IMDB information about Artemis Fowl HERE.
Book To Movie Adaptations Coming Soon
It seems that Hollywood is on an adaptation bender these days. With the upcoming Dune film to the To all the Boys I’ve Loved Before Netflix franchise, there is a lot of money to be made in book to screen adaptations. And there are a ton of them in the works. Here’s 15 book to movie adaptations that will soon be coming to a screen near you.
1. The House of Gucci – November 24th, 2021
You don’t have to wait long to watch this true story unfold. Written by Sara Gay Forden, the book goes into the real-life whodunnit of the murder of Maurizio Gucci. Starring Lady Gaga and Adam Driver, this film is coming out this November.
2. Where the Crawdads Sing – June 24, 2022
This bestseller is going to premiere next summer on Netflix. The book, written by Delia Owens follows Kya; a young woman with a turbulent life, who becomes the prime suspect in a mysterious murder. Daisy Edgar-Jones is set to play Kya.
3. The Nightingale – December 23, 2022
The Nightingale, written by Kristin Hannah, follows the lives of two French sisters after their lives are torn apart by World War Two. The film stars sisters Elle and Dakota Fanning and is set to be released on 23 December 2022.
4. The School for Good and Evil – 2022
Written by Soman Chianani, The School for Good and Evil is a middle-grade standout. It takes place at twin schools that kidnap two children every year. Alongside the children of famous fairy-tale heroes and villains, these children are then trained at either the School for Good or the School for Evil. Eventually becoming the next generation of fairy tales. This film has big names in the cast, such as Charlize Theron, Laurence Fishburne, and Kerry Washington. The main characters Sophie and Agatha will be played by Sophia Ann Caruso and Holly Sturton. Shadow and Bone mainstay Kit Young will also be in this adaptation. It has wrapped filming and will come out sometime in 2022.
5. All Quiet on the Western Front – 2022
Who else remembers reading this in school? The classic was written by Erich Maria Remarque and chronicles the horrors of World War One. The book is being adapted as a film by Netflix. It’s going to be directed by Edward Berger and will star Daniel Bruhl. This is actually the third time the book has been adapted for the screen and will premier in 2022.
6. House of the Dragon/ Fire and Blood – 2022
Rejoice Game of Thrones fans, there’s more coming your way. Based on the book Fire and Blood by George R. R. Martin, this Game of Thrones spin-off follows the Targaryens 300 years before the events of Game of Thrones. It’s being produced by HBO and will be a ten-part limited series. It’s set to premiere in 2022.
7. Bridgerton (Season 2) – 2022
The pandemic hit Bridgerton has also been renewed for season two. The second season will cover The Viscount Who Loved Me, by Julia Quinn. This love story will centre around Anthony Bridgerton. There’s no official release date, but speculation puts it at 2022.
8. A Discovery of Witches (Season 3) – 2022
AMC +’s Discovery of Witches has been renewed for season three. The show is based on Deborah Harkness’All Souls Trilogy. It centres around actors Matthew Goode and Teresa Palmer as a vampire and witch who fall in love. It’s set to premiere sometime in 2022.
9. Shadow and Bone (Season 2) – 2022/2023
Netflix’s Shadow and Bone has been confirmed for a second season. It will cover the events of the second book, Siege and Storm. It’s also unclear if it will dip into the Six of Crows duology. You can read more of our coverage of season two of Shadow and Bone here.
10. Ninth House – TBD
Written by the same author of Shadow and Bone, Ninth House is Leigh Bardugo’s adult fiction series. It follows Yale freshman Alex Stern, who has the ability to see ghosts. She is hired to oversee the dark magical dealings of Yale’s secret societies and gets caught up in forces beyond her imagination. Picked up less than two days after its release in 2019, Ninth House is in the works for an Amazon series adaptation. The show does not have a release date yet and is still in pre-production. Leigh Bardugo is currently writing both the sequel and the show, according to her Instagram.
11. They Both Die at the End – TBD
When Mateo and Rufus are told that they will die, they befriend each other to enjoy their last day. After the project fizzled out at HBO, They Both Die at the End has now been picked up for a tv show by Entertainment One. The show will also be written by the author of the book, Adam Silvera. There is no release date yet.
12. The Selection – TBD
A staple of 2010s dystopian fiction, The Selection by Kiera Kass is right up there with Divergent and the Maze Runner. The Selection follows America Singer, who is selected to compete in a Bachelor-like competition to select the next Queen. What feels frivolous quickly becomes a high-stakes competition for the fate of the country. The Selection is set to premiere on Netflix as a movie. Haifaa Al-Mansour is attached to direct. You can expect to be able to watch The Selection in mid-2021.
13. The Red Queen – TBD
Another mainstay of mid-2010’s dystopia is the Red Queen series, by Victoria Aveyard. The Red Queen is set in a world divided by blood colour. The silver-blooded have superpowers and rule over the kingdom. The red-blooded are powerless; living in poverty and serving as cannon fodder to the war. But when red-blooded Mare Barrow reveals the power to manipulate lightning, everything changes. Elizabeth Banks is executive producing and directing The Red Queen for a TV series at Peacock. She will also play a key role. We’re still waiting on a release date, but Aveyard has co-written the pilot.
14. Blackout – TBD
Blackout is a collection of short stories following black teenagers who stumble upon love in the middle of a blackout in New York City. Authors include Dhonielle Clayton, Tiffany D. Jackson, Nic Stone, Angie Thomas, Nicola Yoon, and Ashley Woodfolk. The collection is going to be adapted into a six-part anthology on Netflix. The Obamas are actually producing Blackout under their flagship Higher Ground banner and Temple Hill. There is no release date yet.
15. Long Way Down – TBD
Written by Jason Reynolds, Long Way Down takes place in the sixty seconds the main character decides whether or not to murder the man who killed his brother. It’s being adapted into a feature film by Universal and is produced by John Legend and Michael De Luca. There is no release date yet.
That’s our list of 15 book to movie adaptations coming out soon. Which one are you most looking forward to seeing? Let us know in the comments below.
Check out the five things you missed in Bridgeton Season One HERE.
Read iMDB information on The House of Gucci HERE.
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