With less than a week left until the premiere of Prime Video’s Daisy Jones & The Six, it’s no surprise that excitement surrounding the series is at an all-time high. An adaptation of Taylor Jenkins Reid’s best-selling novel of the same name, the series stars Riley Keough as the titular Daisy Jones and Sam Claflin as rock musician Billy Dunne. Chronicling the whirlwind rise and mysterious fall of an iconic rock group in the 1970s, the show’s explosive trailer left fans of the novel both eager and impressed. But Daisy Jones & The Six is only one of the many book-to-screen adaptations we’re excited for this year.
From science fiction sagas to revered classics, books provide the basis for some of this year’s most anticipated films and shows. Enduring works like The Color Purple are revisited in a new light, while long-beloved novels like Judy Blume’s Are you there God? It’s me, Margaret get put to screen for the first time. There’s also The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, the prequel to the popular Hunger Games trilogy, as well as Silo, a post-apocalyptic series set in a subterranean city buried below the Earth’s surface. And of course, one can’t forget about the ambitious screen adaptation of Denis Villeneuve’s Dune, which sees its star-studded second half slated for release this year.
Ahead of the illustrious line-up set to grace our screens in 2023, we round up the book-to-screen adaptations that we are looking forward to most. Whether you’re a staunch believer in reading the book before watching the movie or you’re just looking for the next title to add to your bookshelf, find the full list of our favourite novels being adapted for the screen below.
1 / 6
Daisy Jones & The Six
This gripping novel traces the whirlwind rise and mysterious fall of a legendary band in the 1970s—formed by bringing together party girl Daisy Jones and rock group The Six. At the height of their success, the band splits up, leaving the world to wonder why. Presented entirely as snippets of dialogue taken from fictional interviews and pieced together to form a documentary script, this intriguing read is being adapted into a 10-part series starring Riley Keough and Sam Claflin.
2 / 6
The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes
Taking place 64 years before The Hunger Games, The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes centres a young Coriolanus Snow. A far cry from the callous president of Panem that we are familiar with in the original trilogy, he mentors a tribute for the 10th Hunger Games—an event that will put him on the path to his tyrannical reign. West Side Story’s Rachel Zegler, Euphoria’s Hunter Schafer and rising star Tom Blyth front the upcoming screen adaptation, which is set to be released in November this year.
3 / 6
Are you there God? It’s me, Margaret
Judy Blume’s Are you there God? It’s me, Margaret might have been written for a younger audience, but it has charmed teens and adults alike since its release in 1970. An endearing coming-of-age tale, it follows 11-year-old Margaret Simon, born to a Christian mother and a Jewish father. Capturing the experience of growing up with humour and honesty, the novel has been commended for its frank discussions on religious identity and early-adolescent anxieties. Its film adaptation, slated for April, stars Abby Ryder Fortson and Rachel McAdams.
4 / 6
Denis Villeneuve’s epic sci-fi behemoth follows the brilliant Paul Atreides, whose family accepts stewardship of the planet Arrakis. While the planet is an inhospitable desert wasteland, it is also the only source of melange—a drug that extends life and enhances mental abilities. As the second half of the novel gets adapted for the screen, a line-up of impressive names joins the already star-studded cast—including the likes of Florence Pugh, Austin Butler and Léa Seydoux.
5 / 6
The Color Purple
Awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 1983, The Color Purple illustrates the stories of African American women in early 20th century rural Georgia. A powerful piece of modern American literature, it chronicles the lives of sisters Celie and Nettie, whose hopes and loyalty towards each other endure time and distance even as they are separated as young girls. Commended for the complexity of its female characters and its eloquent use of Black English Vernacular, the novel shatters the silence surrounding domestic and sexual abuse, painting a formidable picture of growth, resilience and bravery in the face of pain. Produced by Quincy Jones, Steven Spielberg, Oprah Winfrey and Scott Sanders, the 2023 film puts the novel’s acclaimed musical adaptation to screen.
6 / 6
The Silo series
The introductory teaser to the Silo series reads: “If the lies don’t kill you, the truth will.” Comprising Wool, Shift and Dust, the post-apocalyptic series is set in a highly-regulated subterranean city extending 144 stories below the Earth’s surface known as the Silo. Following the intertwined lives of multiple characters living there, the series uncovers the secrets of the city and the mysteries that it holds. Starring Rebecca Ferguson, its screen adaptation is projected for release in 2023 on Apple TV+.