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This week covers Vampire Academy’s box office sales, the controversy over profanity in YA novels, more YA film adaptation news, and more!
Vampire Academy Movie is Out
The Vampire Academy movie is out, but the release hasn’t been a smooth one. The movie opened this week with a measly $1.4 million dollars in ticket sales on its first night, and $1.5 million on the second one. Its weekend accumulation came in at just a little over $4 million dollars. Not a stellar start, especially when you compare it to other movies released this week—The Lego Movie had a three day accumulation of $58-63 million. And in the same three days, Frozen, which has been out since November 20th, 2013, pulled in $7 million. Even worse, the movie is being plagued by lackluster reviews from critics and fans (its Rotten Tomato rating is at 10%), and fans have been turned away from several theatres after falsely advertised midnight screenings.
Steph went to see it on opening night. Her movie review will be going up soon, but basically, she said it was incredibad in a fun, horrible way.
Other fans seemed to quite enjoy it. Aside from a few big hits though, YA book-to-movie adaptations haven’t been pulling the money in. Vampire Academy is just the latest in a growing string of poor performers. This causes us some distress for the upcoming Divergent movie, though the buzz surrounding that one seems to be higher and more positive, and people are betting that it could be a big seller based on its adult crossover appeal.
Swearing in Young Adults Gets #$@%ing Contentious
With the release this week of When Mr. Dog Bites came a controversy of mediocre proportions over the use of swear words in a novel about a boy with Tourette Syndrome, whose tic is swearing. Martin Chilton took issue with the novel because, “It is not as though publishers, Bloomsbury, are unaware of the novel’s content, which they have issued simultaneously on their YA and adult list [...] because they are using the swearing to publicise the book.”
I feel like this argument unfairly discriminates against people who would like a book for its profanity-laden content. People like me. And as a teenager, this book would have been my thing. But still, we must protect the children at all costs from the bad words!
Brian Conoghan responded to Chilton’s claims through an email with Publishers’ Weekly:
“I always believed during the writing process and even today that every curse and/or objectionable word used was not written gratuitously. Everything was well measured to fit the honesty and accuracy of the characters.”
J. K. Rowling is Living Up to Her First Two Initials
J. K. Rowling caused an uproar, the likes that I would like to see for climate change, last week when quotes were released where she confessed she wished she hadn’t paired Hermione and Ron together. The internet quickly exploded like this:
Those of us who agreed with Rowling that Hermione and Ron would need marriage counseling were promptly rounded up and burned in an all-consuming hatefire.
In the full interview with Emma Watson, Rowling admitted that there were a lot of aspects about Harry and Hermione that would possibly have made more sense as a relationship.
“In some ways Hermione and Harry are a better fit and I’ll tell you something very strange. When I wrote Hallows, I felt this quite strongly when I had Hermione and Harry together in the tent! I hadn’t told [Steve] Kloves that and when he wrote the script he felt exactly the same thing at exactly the same point.”
And she also had this to say about Hermione and Ron:
“Oh, maybe she and Ron will be alright with a bit of counseling, you know. I wonder what happens at wizard marriage counseling? They’ll probably be fine. He needs to work on his self-esteem issues and she needs to work on being a little less critical.”
Rowling, Rowling, Rowling! You never seem to tire of breaking hearts!
I hadn’t even heard of The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson or that it was being adapted for the big screen. However, with the news this week that Octavia Spencer and Danny Glover are joining Kathy Bates and Glenn Close on the cast, this movie that I hadn’t even heard about has now skyrocketed to a highly anticipated release for me. The synopsis seems pretty awesome as well.
Watch out world! The Great Gilly Hopkins is looking for a home. She’s a foster kid who’s been angry, lonely, and hurting for so long that’s she’s always ready for a fight. Be on the lookout for her best barracuda smile, the one she saves for well-meaning social workers. Watch out for her most fearful look, a cross between Dracula and Godzilla, used especially to scare shy foster brothers. Don’t be fooled by her “Who, me?” expression, guaranteed to trick foster parents, teachers, and anyone who gets in her way.
It’s Gilly Hopkins vs. the world! And so far, Gilly seems to be winning. But what she doesn’t realize is that every time she wins, she really loses, until she discovers a love as formidable as any enemy she’s ever known.
Stephen Herek, of The Mighty Ducks fame, is directing and shooting starts April 9th.
YA’s latest hot buzzing title, Red Rising by Pierce Brown is joining the other cool kids of the book-to-film crowd with Marc Foster directing. Pierce Brown has written the script, though no word on which studio will be involved. The movie adaptation is getting book bloggers almost as excited as a picture of Pierce Brown does.
The movie seems to promise quite a lot of action and high stakes tension based on the book summary:
The war begins...
Darrow is a Helldiver, one of a thousand men and women who live in the vast caves beneath the surface of Mars. Generations of Helldivers have spent their lives toiling to mine the precious elements that will allow the planet to be terraformed. Just knowing that one day people will be able to walk the surface of the planet is enough to justify their sacrifice. The Earth is dying, and Darrow and his people are the only hope humanity has left.
Until the day Darrow learns that it is all a lie. Mars is habitable - and indeed has been inhabited for generations by a class of people calling themselves the Golds. The Golds regard Darrow and his fellows as slave labour, to be exploited and worked to death without a second thought.
With the help of a mysterious group of rebels, Darrow disguises himself as a Gold and infiltrates their command school, intent on taking down his oppressors from the inside.
But the command school is a battlefield. And Darrow isn’t the only student with an agenda...
We Cuddlebuggers eagerly await more news.
Noggin by John Corey Whaley is yet another novel being adapted for the big screen. Summit has purchased the rights and Jamie Linden is doing double duty to write and direct. The book itself doesn’t come out until April from Simon & Schuster. This is John Corey Whaley’s second novel.
More about the book:
Listen — Travis Coates was alive once and then he wasn’t.
Now he’s alive again.
Simple as that.
The in between part is still a little fuzzy, but he can tell you that, at some point or another, his head got chopped off and shoved into a freezer in Denver, Colorado. Five years later, it was reattached to some other guy’s body, and well, here he is. Despite all logic, he’s still 16 and everything and everyone around him has changed. That includes his bedroom, his parents, his best friend, and his girlfriend. Or maybe she’s not his girlfriend anymore? That’s a bit fuzzy too.
Looks like if the new Travis and the old Travis are ever going to find a way to exist together, then there are going to be a few more scars.
Oh well, you only live twice.
Sounds like this one is going to be interesting!
YA New York Times Bestsellers (February 16, 2014)
1. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
2. The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak
3. Hollow City by Ransom Riggs
4. Looking for Alaska by John Green
5. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ranson Riggs
6. Paper Towns by John Green
7. This Star Won’t Go Out by Esther Earl with Lori and Wayne Earl
8. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
9. An Abundance of Katherines by John Green
10. Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell
Stand-Off by Andrew Smith
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Rights: World English
Agent: Michael Bourret (Dystel & Goderich Literary Management)
Stand-Off will focus on Ryan Dean’s senior year, in which he becomes captain of the rugby team.
The Weight of Feathers by Anna-Marie McLemore
Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books (St. Martin’s Press)
Rights: North American
Agent: Taylor Martindale (Full Circle Literary)
In which two teenagers from rival families of traveling performers fall in love despite impossible odds. Publication is set for 2015.
Arrows by Melissa Gorzelanczyk
Publisher: Delacorte (Random House)
Agent: Carrie Howland at Donadio & Olson
Greek mythology meets MTV’s Teen Mom, a cupid-in-training from Olympus shoots a ballet prodigy with an arrow, realizing too late the other arrow in his pack is useless, causing a tragically one-sided enchantment. It’s scheduled for fall 2015.
SOURCE: Publishers’ Weekly