2011: A Look at the Year in Books on Film – by Amanda Bell

This year, there were a lot of book-to-film adaptations to hit the big screen. With Harry Potter and Twilight in the mix, too, some of these were among the highest sellers all year. Critically, though, some were much stronger than others . . . Here’s a run-through of 2011’s year in books on film (in order of release date).

Did you know all these movie stories originated in book form?

The Rite
Release Date: January 28th
Source Material: The Rite: The Making of a Modern Exorcist by Matt Baglio
Main Cast: Anthony Hopkins, Colin O’Donoghue, Ciaran Hinds
Domestic Sales: $33,047,633
Critical Reception: 19% on Rotten Tomatoes

Gnomeo & Juliet
Release Date: February 11th
Source Material: Loosely based on Romeo & Juliet by William Shakespeare
Main Cast: James McAvoy, Emily Blunt, Maggie Smith
Domestic Sales: $99,967,670
Critical Reception: 56% on Rotten Tomatoes

The Eagle
Release Date: February 11th
Source Material: The Eagle by Rosemary Sutcliff
Main Cast: Channing Tatum, Jamie Bell, Donald Sutherland
Domestic Sales: $19,490,041
Critical Reception: 39% on Rotten Tomatoes

Unknown
Release Date: February 18th
Source Material: Out of My Head by Didier van Cauwelaert
Main Cast: Liam Neeson, Diane Kruger, January Jones
Domestic Sales: $63,686,397
Critical Reception: 55% on Rotten Tomatoes

I Am Number Four
Release Date: February 18th
Source Material: I Am Number Four by Pittacus Lore
Main Cast: Alex Pettyfer, Timothy Olyphant, Diana Agron
Domestic Sales: $55,100,437
Critical Reception: 32% on Rotten Tomatoes

Beastly
Release Date: March 4th
Source Material: Beastly by Alex Flinn
Main Cast: Alex Pettyfer, Vanessa Hudgens, Mary-Kate Olsen
Domestic Sales: $27,865,571
Critical Reception: 19% on Rotten Tomatoes

The Adjustment Bureau
Release Date: March 4th
Source Material: “Adjustment Team” by Philip K. Dick (short story)
Main Cast: Matt Damon, Emily Blunt, Michael Kelly
Domestic Sales: $62,495,645
Critical Reception: 72% on Rotten Tomatoes

Mars Needs Moms
Release Date: March 11th
Source Material: Mars Needs Moms! by Berkeley Breathed
Main Cast: Seth Green, Joan Cusack, Dan Fogler
Domestic Sales: $21,392,758
Critical Reception: 36% on Rotten Tomatoes

The Lincoln Lawyer
Release Date: March 18th
Source Material: The Lincoln Lawyer by Michael Connelly
Main Cast: Matthew McConaughey, Marisa Tomei, Ryan Phillippe
Domestic Sales: $58,009,200
Critical Reception: 84% on Rotten Tomatoes

Limitless
Release Date: March 18th
Source Material: Dark Fields by Alan Glynn
Main Cast: Bradley Cooper, Abbie Cornish, Anna Friel
Domestic Sales: $79,249,455
Critical Reception: 69% on Rotten Tomatoes

Jane Eyre
Release Date: March 18th
Source Material: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
Main Cast: Mia Wasikowska, Michael Fassbender, Jamie Bell
Domestic Sales: $11,242,660
Critical Reception: 85% on Rotten Tomatoes

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules
Release Date: March 25th
Source Material: Rodrick Rules (Diary of a Wimpy Kid #2) by Jeff Kinney
Main Cast: Zachary Gordon, Devon Bostick, Robert Capron
Domestic Sales: $52,698,535
Critical Reception: 47% on Rotten Tomatoes

Soul Surfer
Release Date: April 8th
Source Material: Soul Surfer: A True Story of Faith, Family, and Fighting to Get Back on the Board by Bethany Hamilton, Rick Bundschuh, Sheryl Berk
Main Cast: AnnaSophia Robb, Dennis Quaid, Helen Hunt
Domestic Sales: $43,853,424
Critical Reception: 46% on Rotten Tomatoes

Atlas Shrugged: Part I
Release Date: April 15th (limited)
Source Material: Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
Main Cast: Taylor Schilling, Grant Bowler, Edi Gathegi
Domestic Sales: $4,627,375
Critical Reception: 12% on Rotten Tomatoes

Water for Elephants
Release Date: April 22nd
Source Material: Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
Main Cast: Robert Pattinson, Reese Witherspoon, Christoph Waltz
Domestic Sales: $58,709,717
Critical Reception: 61% on Rotten Tomatoes

Thor
Release Date: May 6th
Source Material: Thor by Stan Lee, Larry Lieber, Jack Kirby, J. Michael Straczynski (comic books)
Main Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Anthony Hopkins, Natalie Portman
Domestic Sales: $181,030,624
Critical Reception: 77% on Rotten Tomatoes

Something Borrowed
Release Date: May 6th
Source Material: Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin
Main Cast: Ginnifer Goodwin, Kate Hudson, Colin Egglesfield
Domestic Sales: $39,046,489
Critical Reception: 15% on Rotten Tomatoes

Priest
Release Date: May 13th
Source Material: Priests by Min-Woo Hyung (graphic novel)
Main Cast: Paul Bettany, Cam Gigandet, Maggie Q
Domestic Sales: $29,136,626
Critical Reception: 17% on Rotten Tomatoes

X-Men: First Class
Release Date: June 3rd
Source Material: X-Men by Sheldon Turner and Bryan Singer (comic books)
Main Cast: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence
Domestic Sales: $146,408,305
Critical Reception: 87% on Rotten Tomatoes

Green Lantern
Release Date: June 17th
Source Material: Green Lantern by Geoff Johns (comic books)
Main Cast: Ryan Reynolds, Blake Lively, Peter Sarsgaard
Domestic Sales: $116,601,172
Critical Reception: 27% on Rotten Tomatoes

Mr. Popper’s Penguins
Release Date: June 17th
Source Material: Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard Atwater and Florence Atwater
Main Cast: Jim Carrey, Carla Gugino, Angela Lansbury
Domestic Sales: $68,218,041
Critical Reception: 47% on Rotten Tomatoes

Monte Carlo
Release Date: July 1st
Source Material: Headhunters by Jules Bass
Main Cast: Selena Gomez, Leighton Meester, Katie Cassidy
Domestic Sales: $23,184,930
Critical Reception: 38% on Rotten Tomatoes

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2
Release Date: July 15th
Source Material: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling
Main Cast: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint
Domestic Sales: $381,011,219
Critical Reception: 96% on Rotten Tomatoes

Winnie the Pooh
Release Date: July 15th
Source Material: Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne and E.H. Shepard
Main Cast: Jim Cummings, Craig Ferguson, John Cleese
Domestic Sales: $26,692,846
Critical Reception: 91% on Rotten Tomatoes

Captain America: The First Avenger
Release Date: July 22nd
Source Material: Captain America by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby (comic books)
Main Cast: Chris Evans, Hugo Weaving, Samuel L. Jackson
Domestic Sales: $176,654,505
Critical Reception: 78% on Rotten Tomatoes

Cowboys & Aliens
Release Date: July 29th
Source Material: Cowboys & Aliens by Scott Mitchell Rosenberg (comic book)
Main Cast: Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford, Olivia Wilde
Domestic Sales: $100,240,551
Critical Reception: 44% on Rotten Tomatoes

The Help
Release Date: August 10th
Source Material: The Help by Kathryn Stockett
Main Cast: Emma Stone, Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer
Domestic Sales: $169,036,252
Critical Reception: 75% on Rotten Tomatoes

One Day
Release Date: August 19th
Source Material: One Day by David Nicholls
Main Cast: Anna Hathaway, Jim Sturgess, Patricia Clarkson
Domestic Sales: $13,843,771
Critical Reception: 37% on Rotten Tomatoes

Seven Days in Utopia
Release Date: September 2nd
Source Material: Golf’s Sacred Journey: Seven Days at the Links of Utopia by David Cook
Main Cast: Lucas Black, Robert Duvall, Melissa Leo
Domestic Sales: $4,373,074
Critical Reception: 12% on Rotten Tomatoes

I Don’t Know How She Does It
Release Date: September 16th
Source Material: I Don’t Know How She Does It by Allison Pearson
Main Cast: Sarah Jessica Parker, Pierce Brosnan, Kelsey Grammer
Domestic Sales: $9,662,284
Critical Reception: 18% on Rotten Tomatoes

Moneyball
Release Date: September 23rd
Source Material: Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game by Michael Lewis
Main Cast: Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill, Robin Wright
Domestic Sales: $73,904,739
Critical Reception: 95% on Rotten Tomatoes

Killer Elite
Release Date: September 23rd
Source Material: The Feather Men by Fanulph Fiennes
Main Cast: Jason Statham, Clive Owen, Robert de Niro
Domestic Sales: $25,124,966
Critical Reception: 25% on Rotten Tomatoes

What’s Your Number?
Release Date: September 30th
Source Material: 20 Times a Lady by Karyn Bosnak
Main Cast: Anna Faris, Chris Evans, Blythe Danner
Domestic Sales: $14,011,084
Critical Reception: 24% on Rotten Tomatoes

Real Steel
Release Date: October 7th
Source Material: Steel: And Other Stories by Richard Matheson (short story)
Main Cast: Hugh Jackman, Evangeline Lilly, Dakota Goyo
Domestic Sales: $83,425,009
Critical Reception: 58% on Rotten Tomatoes

The Big Year
Release Date: October 14th
Source Material: The Big Year: A Tale of Man, Nature, and Fowl Obsession by Mark Obmascik
Main Cast: Owen Wilson, Jack Black, Steve Martin
Domestic Sales: $7,166,399
Critical Reception: 37% on Rotten Tomatoes

The Three Musketeers
Release Date: October 21st
Source Material: The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
Main Cast: Logan Lerman, Matthew Macfadyen, Ryan Stevenson
Domestic Sales: $20,119,626
Critical Reception: 24% on Rotten Tomatoes

The Rum Diary
Release Date: October 28th
Source Material: The Rum Diary by Hunter S. Thompson
Main Cast: Johnny Depp, Giovanni Ribis, Aaron Eckhart
Domestic Sales: $13,018,899
Critical Reception: 51% on Rotten Tomatoes

The Descendants
Release Date: November 16th (limited)
Source Material: The Descendants by Kaui Hart Hemmings
Main Cast: George Clooney, Shailene Woodley, Amara Miller
Domestic Sales: $33,716,552 (so far)
Critical Reception: 90% on Rotten Tomatoes

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1
Release Date: November 18th
Source Material: Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer
Main Cast: Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart, Taylor Lautner
Domestic Sales: $270,951,901 (so far)
Critical Reception: 26% on Rotten Tomatoes

Hugo
Release Date: November 23rd
Source Material: The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick
Main Cast: Chloe Moretz, Asa Butterfield, Christopher Lee
Domestic Sales: $44,927,000 (so far)
Critical Reception: 94% on Rotten Tomatoes

A Dangerous Method
Release Date: November 23rd (limited)
Source Material: A Dangerous Method: The Story of Jung, Freud, and Sabina Spielrein by John Kerr
Main Cast: Michael Fassbender, Keira Knightley, Viggo Mortensen
Domestic Sales: $412,937 (so far)
Critical Reception: 79% on Rotten Tomatoes

My Week with Marilyn
Release Date: November 23rd (limited)
Source Material: My Week with Marilyn by Colin Clark
Main Cast: Michelle Williams, Eddie Redmayne, Kenneth Branagh
Domestic Sales: $7,307,196 (so far)
Critical Reception: 83% on Rotten Tomatoes

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
Release Date: December 9th
Source Material: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy by John le Carre
Main Cast: Gary Oldman, Colin Firth, Tom Hardy
Domestic Sales: $2,311,670 (so far)
Critical Reception: 94% on Rotten Tomatoes

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows
Release Date: December 16th
Source Material: The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Main Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Noomi Rapace
Domestic Sales:  $90,564,000 (so far)
Critical Reception: 59% on Rotten Tomatoes

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Release Date: December 21st
Source Material: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
Main Cast: Rooney Mara, Daniel Craig, Stellan Skarsgard
Domestic Sales: $27,716,000 (so far)
Critical Reception: 85% on Rotten Tomatoes

The Adventures of Tintin
Release Date: December 21st
Source Material: The Adventures of Tintin by Herge (comic book series)
Main Cast: Jamie Bell, Andy Serkis, Daniel Craig
Domestic Sales: $24,107,000 (so far)
Critical Reception: 84% on Rotten Tomatoes

We Bought a Zoo
Release Date: December 23rd
Source Material: We Bought a Zoo: The Amazing True Story of a Young Family, a Broken Down Zoo, and the 200 Wild Animals that Changed Their Lives Forever by Benjamin Mee
Main Cast: Matt Damon, Scarlett Johansson, Thomas Haden Church
Domestic Sales: $15,600,000 (so far)
Critical Reception: 63% on Rotten Tomatoes

War Horse
Release Date: December 25th
Source Material: War Horse by Michael Morpurgo
Main Cast: Jeremy Irvine, Emily Watson, David Thewlis
Domestic Sales: $15,025,000 (so far)
Critical Reception: 74% on Rotten Tomatoes

For the comments: What was your favorite “book on film” of 2011?

This post was written by Amanda Bell, who also writes the Twilight Examiner column, the District 14 column at NextMovie.com, and is a regular contributor to Hypable.com and other websites. Follow @AmandaBWrites on Twitter for more of her great work!

3 responses to “2011: A Look at the Year in Books on Film – by Amanda Bell

  1. There were a lot on here I had no idea were based on books. Especially The Adjustment Bureau. I liked that movie a lot more than I thought I would.

  2. Pingback: TWednesday: 1/4/12 « Books Make Me Happy

  3. It was definitely the final Harry Potter flick that was my favorite! But, I also enjoyed The Help and We Bought a Zoo!

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