TV adaptation pitches for our favourite films

Our writers discuss their ideas for beneficial movie to TV show adaptations

multiple writers
10th August 2020
Credit: IMDb, Warner Brothers Pictures, 2016 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. and Ratpac-Dune Entertainment LLC, Disney
Sometimes we love a film so much, we wish we could have more content. This usually comes in the forms of sequels or TV show spin-offs, but these usually aren't needed or are executed poorly. However, there are some franchises that our writers believe would work equally well on the small screen.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (2016)

Right off the bat, I am pitching a TV version of Fantastic Beasts solely based on the first movie in the franchise. Since I haven’t actually seen The Crimes of Grindelwald, I might get a few things wrong here and there or suggest things that may have been developed in the sequel, so bear with me.

Credit: Warner Brothers Pictures, IMDb

As the spin-off and prequel to the beloved Harry Potter saga, there’s no doubt that Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them would have been highly anticipated had it been announced as a television series rather than a film franchise. Personally, I think the complex wizarding world in which the film is set would have made for a perfect TV series, with more room to grow and time to expand on the entwining storylines within the Harry Potter universe. Although there’s no denying it’s an entertaining film, I do think Fantastic Beasts needs more growth and development towards its characters. Instead, it seems to spend too long focusing on the impressive CGI of Newt Scamander’s beasts running wild in New York at the expense of knowing more about Newt himself and the people he encounters.

We’d likely dive deeper into the origins of Newt’s reclusiveness, seeing odd flashbacks as a young wizard and loyal Hufflepuff

Throughout the film Newt remains pretty mysterious. We find out snippets about his past at Hogwarts here and there, albeit flittingly. If Fantastic Beasts was a TV series, we’d likely dive deeper into the origins of Newt’s reclusiveness, seeing odd flashbacks as a young wizard and loyal Hufflepuff. And obviously with Hogwarts comes the friendships Newt would have made with his fellow witches and wizards. This would be a great way to feature cameos of younger versions of characters from the Harry Potter franchise, particularly the ancestors of Harry and Ron or teachers like Professor McGonagall. Beside from Newt’s family and friends, his relationship with Leta Lestrange would be a key focus of the series, as it is hinted that she played an integral role in Newt’s past and his expulsion from Hogwarts.

Credit: Warner Brothers Pictures, IMDb

Despite Newt being the heart of the series, I’d love to learn more about the Goldstein sisters. Very little is revealed about Tina and Queenie in Fantastic Beasts. As an audience we catch a brief glimpse into their homelife as roommates and can see their differing personalities, but that’s pretty much it as Queenie begins to focus her attention on Jacob, and Tina on Newt. In a TV series, much like with Newt, we’d find their backstories through flashbacks. The audience can see how Tina and Queenie are not just different in their personalities, but in their individual strengths as witches. Their differences don’t pit them against each other but ultimately unite them, making their bond stronger as the series progresses. This would also be an opportunity to expand on the American wizarding world and how it contrasts with the British wizarding world we know so much about already.  

I know it may seem simple enough, but I think Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them would have benefitted greatly from being adapted into a TV series over a film franchise. A series would bring more character development and make me care about these characters and their relationships more than in the film. Had Fantastic Beasts been a series, we could have seen a different side to the wizarding world we already love so much, perhaps in more detail than we get, in the original Harry Potter franchise.  

Kate Dunkerton

Enchanted (2007)

I love Enchanted so much. In my TV show idea, it wouldn't be because of a wasted concept, or because the film would work better if it was fleshed out on the small screen. No, I want an entire spin-off series, Tangled The Series style. I mean, look at the art design- that could easily work for an Enchanted spin-off series too!

Credit: IMDb

I want to know how Nancy adjusts to a fairytale life after living in New York

So my pitch: At the end of Enchanted, Giselle stays in New York, Nancy moves to Andalesia and becomes a Princess (Queen?) herself- how does she adjust to living in a fairytale? Basically, the reverse of the plot of Enchanted, but in a spin-off animated series. I know a sequel to Enchanted has been in talks for years, but to be honest, I don't care about ruining Giselle's dreams in New York, I'd rather it be left alone with a happy ending. What I do what, however, is to know how Nancy copes when adjusting to a fairytale life after New York.

Credit: Youtube

Although she was a headstrong romantic, she was also very well accustomed to New York and modern living. How is she suddenly going to live without her phone, her friends, and having to accept that animals talk? Does she initially struggle and then embrace her life? Is Prince (or King now, I guess) Edward there to support her, or does he struggle to teach her the ways of Andalesia? She got married and moved on a whim, does she change her mind about her decision? I have so many questions.

Disney, I have so many ideas, please get in contact with me.

Sophie Hicks

Ready Player One (2018)

Through the game, the film really focuses our attention to topics like unequal wealth distribution, overpopulation, insufficient living spaces, low wages and unemployment inherent to a capitalistic cement world. A television show would allow more space to venture into such topics more deeply, especially since they are entirely relatable to our own realities.

Credit: IMDb

Second, there are very few shows out there which explore the world of games. Yes, The Witcher did a fantastic job as it explored multiple timelines and weaved it all together towards the end. However, it is based upon the novel, rather than the game itself, which is why it follows a linear temporal-spatial timeline. Spielberg, however, actually explored the gaming world as the majority of the film focused upon Wade and his friends trying to finish the challenge, finding the golden egg. Games are all about options and how each one could lead to a different outcome. The film as a television show would have an immense potential to explore how in a multi-player gaming challenge, the choices made by its characters affected both the virtual and real world.

With a television show, each pop-culture reference has the potential to be re-created in more depth

Credit: IMDb

The last and most exciting part is pop culture references. The film is completely stocked up with pop culture references, from Lara Croft (1996) to Back to the Future (1985). My examples are probably downplaying the thrill you get whilst watching the film because it feels like you are actually living in Wade’s world. However, with so much going on at once, the film also suffocates its execution. Crucial elements have been piled upon each other within an extremely detailed world. With a television show, each pop-culture reference has the potential to be re-created in more depth to make the execution of Ready Player One better. Just imagine the interactions of characters from one cinematic universe with another! As a show, it would have become the ultimate crossover ever to have existed in the world of cinema and television.

The film no doubt would have been a fantastic television show. It is the perfect mix of reality and imagination. A thrilling blend of substantial narrative with immensely relatable stuff to keep our digital generation hooked!

Arnojya Shree

Featured image credit:

IMDb, Warner Brothers Pictures, 2016 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. and Ratpac-Dune Entertainment LLC, Disney

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