Though it’s more common for TV to be transformed into filmic gold, it can also work the other way around and downsize to the small screen. This could be something occurring more often if NBC get their way. The US network has joined forces with Working Title to form Working Title TV. They have plans to make British films such as Bridget Jones’s Diary and Billy Elliot into TV shows and perhaps to move on to Four Weddings And A Funeral and Notting Hill. Another adaptation already in production is a mini-series version of the 1940’s film-noir thriller Mildred Pierce. It will star Kate Winslet in the title role, previously played by Joan Crawford, which earned her an Oscar. Previous successful attempts at making the transition from film to TV have mainly been made by Disney – remember those old Tarzan and Hercules series on Saturday mornings? Ahh memories…

One of the most popular TV series spinoffs was M*A*S*H which ran in the 70s and 80s in both the UK and the US. The majority of film-to-television adaptations have been produced in America, with only the most popular ones making their way to Britain and many of the most bizarre shows never making it to our shores. For example, currently airing in the US is an adaptation of 10 Things I Hate About You. After watching a clip on YouTube, I have to conclude, it looks absolutely terrible. Ferris Bueller had a similar spin off that lasted only a few months before being cancelled, as did Dirty Dancing, which also only lasted for half a series. These are just a few of the American adaptations we were lucky enough not to see. Let’s hope they can do better with the new crop of shows heading our way.

Rosie Kinsella

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