In Theaters and On Screen

9780544805026_ef240On Broadway, The Color Purple opened yesterday and is getting kudos from coast to coast. The New York Times calls it “a glory to behold” and the L.A. Times says it is “a spiritually transcendent theatricalization of the tale.” The latter review also notes that the production “relies to an extent on the audience having some understanding of the basic story.”

Fortunately, there is a tie-in, The Color Purple (Musical Tie-In) by Alice Walker (HMH/Mariner Books).

In_the_Heart_of_the_Sea_posterTwo film adaptations open today, including Ron Howard’s long anticipated adaptation of Nathaniel Philbrick’s In the Heart of the Sea.(poster at left).

Unfortunately, despite early Oscar buzz, Variety predicts, based on the overseas box office where it opened last week, that it will be  “one of the biggest flops of director Ron Howard’s career and will serve as a painful coda to what has been a devastating year for Warner Bros.” Reviews are not helping, exemplified by NPR’s headline, “There’s Entirely Too Much Melville In The Heart Of The Sea

But unsuccessful movies sometimes bring readers to the books they are based on. The trade paperback edition has been rising on Amazon’s sales rankings,

9780143126812_fcff5  9781101997765_36a9c

Tie-ins include one for adults and another for young readers:

In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex (Movie Tie-in),  Nathaniel Philbrick (Penguin; Penguin Audio)

In the Heart of the Sea (Young Readers Edition), Nathaniel Philbrick (Penguin/Puffin Books; Blackstone Audio; OverDrive Sample).

The_Big_Short_teaser_posterAnother hotly anticipated adaptation The Big Short, based on Michael Lewis’s best seller he housing 9780393353150_28589and credit bubble, opens in a limited number of theaters today. Says Variety, “Paramount will try to exploit the empty playing field this weekend by launching The Big Short, a comic look at the financial crisis, in limited release. The subject matter is dense, terms like collaterized debt obligations are bandied about, so it will fall to an all-star ensemble of Brad Pitt, Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling, and Steve Carell to bring in audiences. The Big Short debuts on seven theaters before going wide on Dec. 25.”

The NYT is much more positive, calling it “A true crime story and a madcap comedy, a heist movie and a scalding polemic, [that] will affirm your deepest cynicism about Wall Street while simultaneously restoring your faith in Hollywood.”

The tie-in edition was published a few weeks ago, The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine by Michael Lewis (Norton; OverDrive Sample).

Three TV events occur this week.

9780553391695_bdc60Hallmark continues its string of Christmas book adaptations on Sunday with Debbie Macomber’s Dashing Through the Snow (RH/Ballantine), the story of two strangers trying to make it to Seattle in the holiday rush.

There is not a specific tie-in edition, but as we noted the book was one to watch when it came out this past October.

In a three-night event the Syfy channel brings Arthur C. Clarke’s 1953 novel, Childhood’s End, to the small screen.

9781101967034_f5c4bA tie-in edition came out in October, Childhood’s End (Syfy TV Tie-in) by Arthur C. Clarke (PRH/Del Rey; Brilliance Audio).

About an an alien invasion, the take over of the planet begins Dec. 14.

9780316390682_80bc8Also coming from the Syfy channel is The Expanse, a new space-set series based on the Hugo and Locus nominated book Leviathan Wakes (which is the first book in The Expanse series).

A tie-in edition came out in early November, Leviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey (Hachette/Orbit; OverDrive Sample).

The series begins Dec. 14.

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