From Page to Screen - Adapting Literature for the Movies

Ref: C2224950

Nearly two-thirds of Best Picture Oscar winners over the past 80 years have been adapted from books, short stories, graphic novels, plays or epic poems. Many thousands more successful and popular films from the very earliest days of cinema through to the present day have been based on literary works. From popular bestsellers like Ben-Hur and The Silence of the Lambs, encompassing the period novels of Dickens and Jane Austen, great literary fiction such as Lord of the Flies and To Kill A Mockingbird through to current autobiographies and erotica, this course looks at how cinema has used the written word over more than a century as the source and inspiration for so many movies.

Course aim

To introduce students to a wide range of movies from across the decades which have been adapted from literary sources and to assess how successful they have been in commercial and critical terms.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Identify a whole range of movies across the different genres based on literary works.
  • Assess the strengths and weaknesses of adapting books in different film genres.
  • Recognise the main issues facing screenwriters when turning literary works into screenplays.
  • Recognise the challenges facing film directors when translating previously published material to the screen.
  • Offer an informed critique of films from literary sources that they watch in the future

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • You may be asked to undertake additional work in your own time to support your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider
  • Become involved with the WEA in a range of voluntary work and other activities including campaigning as a WEA member
  • Become involved as a volunteer for a WEA partner or another organisation
  • Access the WEA What Next? booklet here

Download full Course information sheet

From Page to Screen - Adapting Literature for the Movies


You can if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • are paying with a credit/debit card or are not paying a fee because of a qualifying benefit
  • have a valid email address
  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2017
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
Visa Credit payments supported by RBS WorldPay Visa Debit payments supported by RBS WorldPay Visa Electron payments supported by RBS WorldPay Mastercard payments supported by RBS WorldPay Maestro payments supported by RBS WorldPay JCB payments supported by RBS WorldPay Solo payments supported by RBS WorldPay
RBS WorldPay Payments Processing