Hitting Screens, Feb. 1 thru 7

Debuting in theaters today is Disney’s big budget, The Finest Hours, based on the true rescue story written for young adults by Michael J. Tougias and Casey Sherman (see our earlier story).

The big kids animated movie opening is Dreamworks Kung Fu Panda 3. Check our list of tie-ins.

The upcoming week brings several adaptations for TV as well as for a high-profile movie.

American_Crime_Story_Season_1_PosterThe People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story is the first in a new series on FX, produced, in part, by Ryan Murphy (Glee, American Horror Story).

The 10-part project premiers Feb. 2, starring Cuba Gooding, Jr. as O. J. Simpson, Sarah Paulson as Marcia Clark, John Travolta as Robert Shapiro, David Schwimmer as Robert Kardashian, Courtney B. Vance as Johnnie Cochran, and Nathan Lane as F. Lee Bailey.

9780812988543_6d385It is based on Jeffrey Toobin’s 1996 book The Run of His Life: The People v. O.J. Simpson. The tie-in edition (Random House; OverDrive Sample) went on sale last September.

The series is getting strong reviews for its intimate, 360 degree take on the crime that kept viewers glued to their TV screens twenty years ago.

Riffing off the popularity of Serial and Netflix’s Making a Murderer, FX’s plans for American Crime Story to re-create other true life stories. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the events of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath will be the subject of a second season.

As we reported earlier, on Feb. 3, ABC will begin airing a miniseries detailing the Bernie Madoff Ponzi scheme with Richard Dreyfuss playing Madoff and Blythe Danner playing his wife, Ruth.

9781484752692_9fce2The show is based on the 2009 book by ABC News’s chief investigative correspondent, Brian Ross, The Madoff Chronicles (Inside the Secret World of Bernie and Ruth) (Kingswell; OverDrive Sample). A tie-in edition came out earlier this month.

Taking aim at the Valentine’s Day crowd (who last year crowded theaters to see Fifty Shades of Grey), Nicholas Sparks’ The Choice hits theaters a bit ahead of the holiday, on Feb. 5.

The film stars Teresa Palmer and Tom Welling and tells the story of two neighbors in a small town who fall in love when one moves next door to the other.

9781455588985_c9307The tie-in came out in late December, The Choice by Nicholas Sparks (Hachette/Grand Central Publishing; Hachette Audio; OverDrive Sample).

The movie adaptation of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith (Quirk Books, 2009), starring Lily James (CinderellaDownton Abbey) as Elizabeth Bennett, Sam Riley as Mr. Darcy and Bella Heathcote as Elizabeth’s sister opens on Feb. 5th as well.

9781594748899_966e2The tie-in edition came out in mid-December: Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (Movie Tie-in Edition), Jane Austen, Seth Grahame-Smith (Quirk Books; OverDrive Sample).

As we reported, it has been a bit of a rocky road getting the film made but with star Lily James set to return to Downton Abbey in upcoming episodes of the final season (with strong hints that her character, Lady Rose is pregnant) the many shifts in lead actresses ended up with a hot star. Now the producers hope audiences will forget that an earlier mashup adaptation, Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter, was a major flop.

For more books to movies and TV, see our list of upcoming book adaptations, as well as our list of tie-ins.

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