Lit Flicks

One of my recent site hits came from a search for “films based on novels” and it reminded me of a business idea I once had. Actually, “business fantasy” is more apt since I have no intention of establishing such a business—but I wish someone would. The business would rent (and sell) movies based on literature and sell the corresponding books right next to the videos. The idea is that if people like the movie they’ll want to read the book and vice versa. Most of my videos and DVDs have counterparts on my bookshelves, so I think there’s a market for this sort of thing. And with so many popular films being based on books I think this venture could be an economic success. Tolkein and Rowling alone could probably keep the place afloat for a decade.

I don’t know why the online retailers don’t link between different formats of the same story. Video and book databases appear to be strangers to each other. You can see “similar” books with some clicking on, but the results are poor. Suggested books to go with Jane Austen’s Persuasion (the film) include Harry Potter and Eats, Shoots and Leaves, with no print edition of Persuasion (or any Austen books) to be found. Starting from the book side of things, there is no way to get directly to the film versions. Things are even worse at Chapters/Indigo, with no option whatsoever to browse books related to a film or films related to a book. [Aside: There is a DVD edition of Persuasion that includes the book, so apparently some publishers are thinking cross-format even if the retailers aren’t.] Things are much better at, with good linkage between books and movies in both directions, but alas (?) I don’t live in the U.S.

Until some enterprising retailer steals my idea and makes a fortune, there is always the library. From the comfort of my own home I can browse the catalogue, reserve the movie versions of the books I love, or the books that inspired the movies I love, and the only thing I have to take out of my wallet is my library card. I’d say that’s a pretty good deal.

4 comments on “Lit Flicks

  1. Leonor says:

    This is a good idea. You could maybe make a fortune… I like your site.

  2. Ninth Wave says:

    Sounds like a good project for an affiliate on your site. You set up the links to Amazon, people click through from your blog. It is very easy to set up. If they purchase your recommendations you get a small fee to help support your continued blogging!
    BTW – I too have had the hotel room/library dream. It must be an archetypal symbol of something – I wish I knew what! Thanks for the blog!

  3. Sylvia says:

    Thanks for the tip, Lisa, I'll look into it. That's interesting that you had a similar dream. Maybe it's a bibliophile thing…? I often dream about books; usually I'm packing for a trip and, as in real life, trying to take a whole lot of books with me!

  4. deborah says:

    I am going to be very busy after my exams following up with the reading noted on your blog. The whole navigation bar on the right could take me a lifetime! And then, to think, there are all those movies, as well. I think the Amazon link is a worthy endeavor.
    So much to read….so little time!

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