by Henry Kulick
Film adaptations aren’t easy, but they do accelerate a major step in the creative process—crafting a completely unique story.
With a written work to rely on, the outlines of the screenplay already exist, but only with some much-needed tweaking can it become ready for film. Sometimes this means something as simple as altering of the main character’s interaction with another, or it can mean the removal of entire portions of the narrative.
More than anything, when moving from page to screen, a screenwriter must be aware of thoughts and actions—specifically, how they impact the viewer. Because what a book can achieve by slipping into the mind of a character and allowing the reader to hear every thought, a movie can only do by showing what the character does and believing the viewer will understand why.
From young adult novels to detective noirs, understanding the mind of our character is absolutely necessary for empathizing and experiencing the story along with them. So how can that written understanding effectively translate to film?