The Best Books on Screen

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Good artists borrow, great artists steal...and smart artists adapt. It's no surprise that some of the biggest blockbusters in movie and television history are ripped from the pages of beloved books - they've already got built-in audiences and have proven their staying power. But now Culturalist's list-makers are asking: of all the amazing characters and unforgettable stories to make the jump from page to screen, which are the best? We're highlighting some of the current frontrunners, but you can see all the current rankings and weigh in by making your own list of the Top 10 Best Movie and TV Adaptations of Books? now!

Post-Apocalyptic Survival
We seem to be drawn to watching people we like in horrible - horrible - situations, and some of the biggest pop-culture phenomena in years have clawed their way up to help us satisfy that urge. From gritty graphic novels like The Walking Dead to YA sensations like The Hunger Games and Divergent, our appetite for seeing a world even more messed up than our own is as endless as that horde of walkers outside the RV.

"You're a wizard, Harry!" Few creative works in history have captured the public imagination in the way J.K. Rowling's boy wizard achieved, and that magic carried over to bring Harry Potter to the big screen. It may not have been first, but keeping company with crossover franchises like The Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones guarantees Harry Potter a spot among the all-time greats.

Monsters and Mayhem
Some villains just need a bit more space to stretch their claws. Whether it's the roar of a t-rex from Jurassic Park, the unseen hunger of Jaws just beneath the water, or the genteel violence of The Silence of the Lambs that sets your pulse racing, some of the most iconic menaces in movie history started out as books.

Sometimes it's too easy to take a lazy potshot at Hollywood when every summer brings around a fresh crop of sequels to last year's blockbusters: "Don't they have any new ideas?" It's not just about superheroes; some of our most beloved classics started their lives as books before being adapted into tremendously important films. To Kill A Mockingbird, The Wizard of Oz, The Godfather and scores of others were printed and bound before they were shot and canned.

Think our listmakers got it wrong? Join the conversation and set the record straight by making your own list of the Top 10 Best Movie and TV Adaptations of Books now!

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