Ask TKP: Pick 1 movie that would be better as a TV series

A play on yesterday's thread on reviving a TV show. What is a movie (or even series of movies) that would be better as episodic TV show?

Forums: 
DISCLAIMER: Forum topics may not have been written or edited by The Key Play staff.

Comments

Battlefield Earth. It was too much to put into a single movie. They barely followed the book.
The Dark Tower. Again, too much for a single movie.

Dark Tower is getting show on Amazon. The show will involve the gunslinger in a younger part of his life. The movie will not be included as part of it. I think it's the third book that is being adapted.

Recent News Release

What's
Important
Now

I second the motion on Dark Tower. They tried to cram entirely too much into one movie. There's enough content in that book series for 7 to 10 seasons of quality TV. The upcoming Amazon series that VTFG mentioned sounds promising, but we need more Roland-as-an-adult content too.

“You got one guy going boom, one guy going whack, and one guy not getting in the endzone.”
― John Madden (describing VT's offense?)

Side note, I read/listened (It was an audiobook) of the first book in the series and it was very confusing. I had no idea what really was going on.

You learn about the back story of the Gunslinger, and how he tracked down the one guy he ends up killing, (The man in black?)

The movie as so much different then the 1 book. I was super confused.

What's
Important
Now

I can see why you're confused. It was an 8-novel series and you read/heard the first and shortest of them. The movie studio inexplicably tried to cram bits and pieces of the entire series haphazardly into a single movie. The movie kinda makes sense if you've read the entire series, but not at all after just one (or even two or three) books.

“You got one guy going boom, one guy going whack, and one guy not getting in the endzone.”
― John Madden (describing VT's offense?)

Ugh, that movie was hot garbage.

Oddly enough, the casting was controversial at the beginning because they cast Idris Elba as a character who was supposed to be every Clint Eastwood character come to life. There is a major storyline in book 2 about the interactions of a black woman against two white characters that really drives parts of the story and there was some worry that it would substantially change the story with a black Roland. There was also a fair bit of racism to go along with it which complicated any discussion of the matter.

The casting ended up being about the only good part of the movie. They abandoned the characters that would have driven the racial tension storyline, as well as pretty much anything and everything having to do with the books except for character names and a few passing references.

It was like if they made a Go-Bots movie but called it Transformers.

Best answer was the first comment. Dark Tower could easily be to HBO/Amazon/Netflix that Game of Thrones has been if you do it right. Sounds like Amazon might be on the right track, which should be exciting.

King Alum of the House Hokie, the First of His Name, Khal of the Turkey Legs, The rightful Heir to the Big Board, the Unbanned, Breaker of Trolls and Father of Gritty

Fast and Furious..there's already enough movies for 2 full seasons

Harry Potter. I mean each book covers exactly one year.

"with all due respect, and remember I’m sayin’ it with all due respect, that idea ain’t worth a velvet painting of a whale and a dolphin gettin’ it on" - Ricky Bobby

Not only a year, but pretty much just a school year which is almost a perfect runtime for a TV series. Plus we all want a remake of 4 and 5.

I would say Dark Crystal, but that's on its way. I for one can not wait for the Dark Crystal tv series. I loved that movie as a kid.

I know it's not a movie, but is anyone psyched about the Wheel of Time tv series being produced? They recently announced some casting decisions that make it clear they are going all in on in (Rosamund Pike for example as a main character). The director has experience leading episodes of Westworld, Black Sails, The Duece, Stranger Things and others. Seems like Amazon is putting the right resources to it

I recently rewatched the Dark Crystal. I remember being so scared of that movie when I was a kid. As an adult it didn't scare me, but I certainly saw how it did when I was a little kid.

What's
Important
Now

There were some parts that scared the shit out of me as a kid. The design of the Skeskis and draining the Gelflings was definitely not kid stuff

I always remembered the Skeskis, but Aughra always scared me too. I didn't realize she wasn't a bad guy in my memory. She's to crazy looking to automatically look like a good guy.

What's
Important
Now

Yeah, I am very excited about Wheel of Time. Each book is easily a season's worth of material.

I think they will be more condensed than that even.

Books 1 and 2 in season 1 maybe? Ending with Falme. But I can't find where I read that so it may be just internet rumor

I don't think I can watch 13 seasons worth of skirt-smoothing and braid-tugging.

JK... I hope.

Click here to destroy wall.

And they only have to make 3 season ending episodes because it seemed like after the first 3 books, the endings were recycled.

I wonder if Hitchhiker's Guide Through the Galaxy could work as a TV series, I liked the movie.

"Oi! What's a Horkie"
"I am ya Grot!"

"Horkies were made for two fings foighten' and winnen'" - Horkie Warboss

"That Gritty git doesn't exactly look like a Horkie, but by Gork and Mork it acts like one!"-Random Horkie Boy

It was a TV series done by the BBC. It was... odd.

If you want a more serial approach, the radio drama is pretty great.

I did not know that there was one on BBC before, I'll see if I can find it.
What year did the show start? If it was recently that's probably why I didn't know since I haven't had cable since 2011, started Tech at that time and just never got cable even after graduation.

"Oi! What's a Horkie"
"I am ya Grot!"

"Horkies were made for two fings foighten' and winnen'" - Horkie Warboss

"That Gritty git doesn't exactly look like a Horkie, but by Gork and Mork it acts like one!"-Random Horkie Boy

Not too recently. The first episode aired in 1981.

Watchmen, which is coming to HBO later this year

But the series is not the comics, it's post comics.

Oh I'm aware, but I'm hopeful that Lindelof (who is a huge fan of the original material) will make something that will feel like Watchmen, rather than the Zack Snyder movie that was faithful to the images of the book but felt nothing like it.

Deadwood

(add if applicable) /s

Pick a movie or series of movies based on a book or series of books and you will have a TV series that would be better than a movie. Just imagine how awesome the LOTR trilogy and The Hobbit would be done like GoT. The Harry Potter series as well. This list could go on and on.

Honestly, I think anything based on a book should be a series done like GoT or Band of Brothers.

The Band of Brothers series on HBO is by far the one show/movie that I have seen that feels like it follows the book to a T, and both are amazing. If you haven't already, I highly recommend reading the book and then catching the series.

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used."
- The BoD

You're in luck. Amazon is spending billions on a LOTR series

I heard it was a prequel based on the age where Sauron wasn't a giant fiery eyeball.

Yeah it won't be the LOTR story but it will be some part of middle earth history and clearly fueled by the insane popularity of GOT

It's hard for me to think the original LOTR trilogy would be better as a TV show when the movies are damn near perfect. I surely would have enjoyed that series, but I don't think it would have necessarily been better.

the movies are damn near perfect

they're not. a tv show would allow for much more world building and exposition so you don't wind up with plot changes like the elves at helm's deep or the dead running around the battlefield at minas tirith. you develop secondary characters better (pretty much all of the main rohan and gondor characters, aragorn and arwen, etc), and you do a much better job of being true to the books

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

As objectively as it can be assessed, all three movies are critically lauded as incredible. You might not think that, but you are in a very small minority if that's the case. As a work of filmmaking and storytelling, they are excellent, and thematically brilliant.

I've also read the books, so there is no need to play that card as if I'm not aware of what they chose not to include/alter in the movies. There is certainly much more content to explore in the form a TV show, but that does not mean it would be a better tv show than the extremely well done movies that they actually are. In fact, I think the movies were constructed perfectly to communicate the major themes and tell the story effectively, and what was and wasn't included were almost universally correct choices.

Dude, no one said they weren't already great. The topic of the thread is what movies you think would be even better as a series.

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used."
- The BoD

I don't think the TV show would necessarily be better than what are incredible movies, which is the first thing I said in my original response. Sometimes dragging something out can lose the magic. There's a lot of shit in GOT, that while I love the books, I'm very glad was omitted from the show because they would have felt out of place or extraneous in visual form. It's okay for some content to be left in book form because it doesn't translate as well to the screen.

I get what you're trying to say, I think. But we're not talking about leaving out a group of people having a meaningless conversation or traveling from point A to point B. We're talking about plot holes and major changes from the books.

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used."
- The BoD

The movies being great does not prevent a series from being even better. A series being better also does not mean it would make the studio more money than a successful box office.

"with all due respect, and remember I’m sayin’ it with all due respect, that idea ain’t worth a velvet painting of a whale and a dolphin gettin’ it on" - Ricky Bobby

A series being better also does not mean it would make the studio more money than a successful box office.

I didn't make a contrasting argument about this, nor did I mention it at all so I don't understand why this is relevant.

The movies being great does not prevent a series from being even better

I think it would be really great as a tv series, I'm just not confident it would be better. As a film series, it won double digit oscars and RoTK for example has a 94/100 on Metacritic.

I don't think the TV show would have been a Breaking Bad level tv show, which IMO it needs to be if it is going to be considered better than the movies.

I only mentioned money as an aside to defend why they were indeed created as movies instead of a series.

I get you love the movies but even at 3 hr runtimes portions felt rushed. If all other things are equal, I dont see how longer screen time would not improve the story.

On the contrary, The Hobbit should have been a single 2 hr movie.

Lastly it is perfectly ok to have a difference of opinion.

"with all due respect, and remember I’m sayin’ it with all due respect, that idea ain’t worth a velvet painting of a whale and a dolphin gettin’ it on" - Ricky Bobby

I agree the stretching out of the Hobbit was ridiculous. Those movies are also quite poor.

I'm cool with people disagreeing. I'm just defending my stance. Which I felt the need to do when the first thing that gets said after I talk about how great the movies are is

They're not.

by the other guy replying to me.

edit: nevermind i misread

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

The Hobbit could have been two 2-hr movies and I'd have been okay with it. I never saw the third one because the second was way too off-putting for me to even want to finish it out.

plus i heard there was no Beorn at the BoFA so why even bother??????????????

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

It could have been 1 2.5 hour movie. The whole thing was... how did Bilbo put it? "...thin, sort of stretched, like butter scraped over too much bread."

In fact, I think the movies were constructed perfectly to communicate the major themes and tell the story effectively, and what was and wasn't included were almost universally correct choices.

And I think the books are too good and too rich and too deep to be constrained by 9 hours of screen time over three movies, and that an episodic TV show would do a better job of not having to make those choices wrt what was and wasn't included.

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

I think the issue here might be that we view the quality of these mediums differently. I think if something is nailed in movie form it wouldn't be better as a tv series on the principal that it is more impressive to nail a complex narrative in movie format because you have less time to work with. If you can accurately and effectively tell the story through movies, you don't need the tv series. I think it's when a movie fails to effectively capture the themes and communicate the narrative that you would consider it being better done as a tv show.

If you can accurately and effectively tell the story through movies, you don't need the tv series.

I think this is where we disagree. LOTR is about Frodo but it's also about Aragorn, and I don't think PJ told that story as well as he could have (or in a way that was true to the way JRRT wrote the character).

We'll probably just agree to disagree on how well the movies told the books' story.

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

I didn't TKP hard enough today, so I'm just now seeing this great debate. My take is that you are both right: the movies are NOT perfect (unlike the books, which are), but they are AWESOME. The story add-ins are tough for devout Tolkien fans to swallow, but the movies are just so well produced and directed that I consider them among the best movies ever made.

Back in 1999 I had a pipe dream about creating a Lord of the Rings TV series. That's not my field, so I would never have acted on that, but it just drove me crazy that 95% of the population didn't know about Tolkien, so I used to think about how a LotR TV series would work. I was thrilled to quickly find out around that time that there were movies in the works, and when they came out I couldn't have been happier with them.

Just my opinion here, but I feel like the best thing Tolkien ever wrote was the Silmarillion. A well-done TV series covering the first three ages up to the events of The Hobbit, as well as the time between The Hobbit and the LotR books, would be awesome. The last few episodes of the series could cover post-LotR events, including the incredibly sad story of Arwen.

The doll's trying to kill me and the toaster's been laughing at me.

The Silmarillion is wonderful.

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used."
- The BoD

Ender's Game (another terrible movie adaptation) could be a wonderful TV series. Done over a few years, the children would age with the story.

Of course the number of good child actors required as well as the limitations on working with child actors probably make this an impossibility.

It was such a travesty. The book is one of my favorite reads ever and there's so much that goes into Ender as a person/character and yet the movie just didn't cover any of it. There was so much potential there and it was squandered.

At least the battleroom was visually stunning. The rest of the movie though... ugh.

The biggest problem with Ender's Game is a lot of the story is internal and relies on you knowing what Ender is thinking. That is going to be hard to adapt no matter what the medium is.

I think it could be done using things like the chapter epigraphs from Rackem, Graff, Anderson, etc.

But I agree, it would be difficult.

Lots of fantasy/sci-fi in this thread, what about some non-fiction? The TV Show on the OJ trial was fantastic, I'm thinking something like that. Two books by the same author that were both adopted into movies come to mind: Moneyball and The Big Short by Michael Lewis. Both of which would be extremely suspenseful as TV shows.

I'd love to see a single TV show that combines The Big Short with Too Big To Fail; you could do one season leading up to the collapse, and a second season focused on the fallout - You could probably split the fallout into two seasons, the first of which ends with congress failing to pass the original TARP legislation. There's so many characters and angles that you could explore - Bernanke/Paulson trying to unite congress to pass legislation, the impact on the Obama/McCain race, How the 'Wall Street Elites' reacted - both the leadership and the lower level people who lost their jobs, the 'common folks' who over spent and lost their jobs, business owners who went under due to lack of customers, college kids unable to get jobs. Imagine the drama you could create if you personified each of these characters and built a few seasons around how their lives changed before and after the crash.

Twitter me

Ready Player One has my vote. Movie feels so rushed compared to the book. Also, they are almost 2 completely different stories.

Haven't seen the movie, but did read the book. The premise is really good, but there's a lot of tough concepts that could be explored that the book doesn't dive deep enough into. The idea of maintaining a real life identity and an online identity is something that's actually happening in the world right now; I'd love to see a darker, grittier TV version of Ready Player One that explores how this impacts characters.

Twitter me

I would love a series that focused more on the story of how the US got in its current state and life outside the Oasis. This would make the Oasis seem even more like an escape then just a simulation that everyone is addicted to. Could also do a deeper dive into each character and their back stories to make you care about each one more than just an avatar. You could see exactly how that balance between real life and life in the Oasis has or doesnt have balance and how other parts of their lives suffer because of this.

If we are going virtual world route, Otherland by Tad Williams would be phenomenal.

Much less nostalgia, but a much more interesting take on virtual reality and the internet as well as better characters and story. RP1 was a fun, light read full of callbacks and references, but not really a great book on its own for me.

Edit: also much more internationally focused. RP1 was so US-centric (especially the movie) which felt kind of odd with a borderless internet world.

I LOVED the book and really liked the movie. I feel like if they had tried to stay more true to the book, it wouldn't have made for as good of a movie TBH. It's one of the few times I found myself agreeing with the adaptive decisions being made.

"And guess what, you've wandered into our school of tuna and we now have a taste of lion." -Allen Gamble, The Other Guys
@Doooougie07

Warcraft

Never Forget #1 Overall Seed UVA 54, #64 UMBC 74

That can be good but I wonder where they will start because Warcraft 1 and 2 seemed not as serious as Warcraft 3 and WoW (I may be wrong and not remembering correctly from when I played 2 as a kid and when I played 3 and WoW as an adult).

"Oi! What's a Horkie"
"I am ya Grot!"

"Horkies were made for two fings foighten' and winnen'" - Horkie Warboss

"That Gritty git doesn't exactly look like a Horkie, but by Gork and Mork it acts like one!"-Random Horkie Boy

Your memory is correct - at the time when Warcraft 1 & 2 were made there wasn't much backstory other than "we need to stop [insert opposing faction] and [insert tailored mission completion goal]". Warcraft III did a decent job of adding some backdrop at the time, but World of Warcraft did a lot (out of necessity) to keep the gamers engaged and part of the story line was to back fill many aspects of the lore that Warcraft 1-3 just glossed over (e.g., Deathwing, and the origin story of the Naga).

For me going back after WoW and reading several of the books, there is a ton of material to work with and would be served well by not just a TV show but multiple shows or miniseries to cover the different eras.

Sorry, I wasn't referring to the video game being translated into a tv series. I was referring to the full length film that came out awhile back that could definitely have used more time to go over things.

Never Forget #1 Overall Seed UVA 54, #64 UMBC 74

Zombieland. Still bummed they nixed the pilot.

I have no idea why my username is VT_Warthog.

Arkansas blew a 24-0 lead in the Belk Bowl.

World War Z. That book was phenomenal, and would be perfect to split into multiple episodes, as each episode could focus on a particular interview. Would be fantastic as a limited series instead of that trash movie.

This. The novel is perfect for an episodic series.

World War Z is exactly what popped in my mind when I read the title of the thread. It is perfectly set up to be a series.

"Sooner or later, if man is ever to be worthy of his destiny, we must fill our heart with tolerance."
-Stan Lee

"Never half-ass two things. Whole-ass one thing."
-Ron Swanson

"11-0, bro"
-Hunter Carpenter (probably)

Came here to say this

Since we have already gone off the rails with this topic, I would love to see a TV series based on the Death Gate cycle. Keanu Reeves as Haplo!

Stephen King's IT

The book was like 1192 pages long and was packed with so much more than the original movie delivered, which was incredible. If that could have been stretched out over a season or two it would have been brilliant.

I heard they are remaking the Stand into a mini series

"with all due respect, and remember I’m sayin’ it with all due respect, that idea ain’t worth a velvet painting of a whale and a dolphin gettin’ it on" - Ricky Bobby

I would love a Jack Reacher series with someone taller than 5'7" playing Reacher...

"Cartoons Plural, Virginia Tech"

hahahahaha, this

21st century QBs Undefeated vs UVA:
MV7, MV5, LT3, Josh Jackson, Jerod Evans, Michael Brewer, Tyrod Taylor, Sean Glennon, and Grant Noel. That's right, UVA. You couldn't beat Grant Noel.

The Departed

Boondocks Saints

State and Main

TKPhi Damn Proud
BSME 2009

Batman

X-men, to many characters for 2 hours. Stories take more than 2 hours.

The cartoon was fantastic! So much more adult then the crap cartoon that's out now.

What's
Important
Now

I really liked the 90s cartoon, the later cartoon with Emma Frost wasnt as good.

I keep trying to find the 90a cartoon on a streaming service for free. I'm hoping Disney + has it. You can only purchase episode on Amazon at the moment.

What's
Important
Now

Wouldn't be surprised at all if the MCU decides to create spinoff shows for the X-Men.

In Sam Rogers we trust.

The Super Inframan

The Last Jedi would've been better as The Surreal Life: Star Wars.

HTHokie93