It’s no secret that many of Hollywood’s greatest stories originate from novels, but you might be surprised to learn which authors are responsible for your favorite adaptations. Stephen King, JK Rowling, and Jane Austen are household names, but Philip K. Dick, Walter Tevis, and Patricia Highsmith have inspired movies and TV shows with reputations on par with The Shining, Harry Potter, and Pride and Prejudice.
Authors who have a surprisingly excellent track record on-screen may be overlooked for a number of reasons. In some cases, their stories were picked up by A-list filmmakers whose fame eclipsed theirs. Daphne du Maurier, for example, produced stories that became the basis of three Alfred Hitchcock movies that are now almost exclusively associated with him. Another reason is variety. Authors like Richard Matheson and Walter Tevis wrote novels that spanned such a wide range of genres that it’s hard to believe the movies and television shows they inspired came from the same person. Few would assume that the 1980 period romance Somewhere in Time was dreamed up by the man who wrote the story behind Will Smith’s post-apocalyptic thriller I Am Legend. Whatever the reason for their undeserved anonymity, these authors created stories that found a wide fandom when they were brought to the screen. Vote up the ones you didn’t realize you already loved.
- 13 VOTES
Elmore Leonard - 'Jackie Brown,' 'Out Of Sight,' 'Get Shorty,' '3:10 to Yuma,' 'Justified'Photo: Jackie Brown / Miramax
- 23 VOTESPhoto: Somewhere in Time / Universal Pictures
- Photo: Shutter Island / Paramount Pictures
- 41 VOTES
Daphne Du Maurier - 'Rebecca,' 'The Birds,' 'Don’t Look Now,' 'My Cousin Rachel'Photo: Don't Look Now / Paramount Pictures
- 51 VOTESPhoto: A Scanner Darkly / Warner Independent Pictures
- 61 VOTES
Patricia Highsmith - 'Strangers On A Train,' 'The American Friend,' 'The Talented Mr. Ripley,' 'Carol'Photo: The Talented Mr. Ripley / Paramount Pictures