Spirit Animals WILD BORN (the first in the series) should be made into a movie. I admit it, as a grown man, I read Spirit Animals and enjoyed it. I can’t help it – I love movies and books made for a younger audience. That is, of course, why I write for that age group. Spirit Animals is a fun story with action/adventure and fantasy, and we’ve all heard legends of spirit animals (and many of us have considered writing about them – one of my novels includes spirit animals, though to a much lesser extent than the Spirit Animals books. So let’s keep our fingers crossed for this book and the rest in the series to one day hit the big screen. For now, let’s discuss why it should be made into a movie.
The basic plot of this book (Book 1 in the series) is that four children are tested to see if they will receive spirit animals, as people often do, but these children receive special spirit animals that have not appeared in a long time and that signal a great battle to come. Amazon lists it as:
Four children separated by vast distances all undergo the same ritual, watched by cloaked strangers. Four flashes of light erupt, and from them emerge the unmistakable shapes of incredible beasts — a wolf, a leopard, a panda, a falcon. Suddenly the paths of these children — and the world — have been changed forever.
Enter the world of Erdas, where every child who comes of age must discover if they have a spirit animal, a rare bond between human and beast that bestows great powers to both. A dark force has risen from distant and long-forgotten lands, and has begun an onslaught that will ravage the world. Now the fate of Erdas has fallen on the shoulders of four young strangers . . . and on you.
Part engrossing book series, part action role-playing game — discover your spirit animal and join the adventure.
Doesn’t that sound awesome? Many of us would watch that to at least see how cool it would look with these kids fighting alongside their animals. But the story is well plotted on top of it just sounding cool.
This is going to be an expensive movie. Either it will be done with special effects, or it will be an animated film — the protagonists have animals fighting alongside them and giving them special powers. We have seen this done in plenty of recent movies (The Golden Compass, Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, The Maze Runner), so it is definitely doable. This book is part of a series, and as of writing seems to be selling fairly well on Amazon.
Some book readers were let down by Eragon, and I hear The Maze Runner film did not live up to the book. I hope I don’t lose any readers by stating that The Hunger Games was no where near as good as the book. Often the screenwriters will attempt to simply capture moments from the book, without giving proper attention to the emotions conveyed on the page. The screenwriter has to read these books and enjoy them, and make a note of what pulled at their heart and why, and capture that while staying as true to the story as possible (who else felt the girl on fire chariot ride in the movie was saltine crackers compared to the caramel chocolate that it was in the book? Answer: Everyone. So Hollywood, if you do approach Spirit Animals, hire the right screenwriter and make it awesome. The budget will be high, but so likely will be the payoff.
To compare, Percy Jackson & The Olympians took in $226 million worldwide, and cost $95 million. The Maze Runner took in $333 million worldwide and only cost $34 million. The Golden Compass took in $372 million worldwide and cost a whopping $180 million (wow!).
Having read Brandon Mull’s Spirit Animals, I can say that the book is equally as engaging as the two comparisons above. Will it draw as big of an audience? With the large following these books have with children, and the fun they present to adults, I don’t see why not.
As an added bonus, the book is fairly short and its structure is tight, so adapting it to a screenplay would be fairly easy. Hollywood may as well at least start there (Ahem, screenwriter for hire right here), and see what they can come up with.
On the topic of awesome books, I write some! If you’d like to check out my work, go to www.JustinSloanAuthor.com.