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BOOKLIST: Comparing Books and Movie Adaptations for Critical Thinking: World Movie Day (November 21)

Updated: Jun 19



World TV Day on November 21st recognizes books adapted to film. Anti-bias literature and anti-bias film depictions are both extremely important in childhood, adolescence, and adulthood to highlight equality and equity. The words in literature can depict an image, but film can visually show the audience what diversity and equity looks like.


In addition, comparing book and film adaptations of a narrative can also provide an opportunity for further analysis, critical thinking, and engagement of young people in processes of understanding and even advocating for true anti-bias depictions.


In this curated book list for World TV Day, you can find middle school to young adult books that have been adapted to films that highlight social disparity, cultural and racial diversity, and historical events. There are also two books that are in the process of being adapted to film, so be on the look out for those movies!


The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne

Reading Level: Young Adult

Film Version: Made into film in 2008

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Beautiful Boy by David Sheff

Combines Beautiful Boy by David Sheff and Tweak by Nic Sheff

Reading Level: Young Adult

Film Version: Made into film in 2018

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The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak

Reading Level: Young Adult

Additional Reviews:

Film Version: Made into film in 2013

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The Breadwinner by Deborah Ellis

Reading Level: Appropriate for grades 6-8

Film Version: Made into film in 2017

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The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

Reading Level:Young Adult

Film Version: Made into film in 1993

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The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Reading Level:Young Adult

Film Version: Made into film in 2018

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Hurricane: The Miraculous Journey of Rubin Carter by James S. Hirsch

Reading Level: Young Adult

Film Version: Made into film in 1999

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John Henry by Julius Lester and Jerry Pinkney

Reading Level: Children’s book

Film Versions: Disney film in 2000, Upcoming Netflix film in January 2020

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Soaring to Glory: A Tuskegee Airman's Firsthand Account of World War II by Philip Handleman

Reading Level: Young Adult

Film Version: Made into film in 1995

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Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds

Reading Level: Young Adult

Film Version:Upcoming film- produced by Universal

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Darius the Great is not Okay by Abid Khorram

Reading Level:

Grades 6-8, High School

Film Version: Upcoming film

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