One of the great things about reading is that it lets your imagination take flight. You can visit places real – and wildly unreal – and be taken on a roller coaster ride of a journey with characters that you may empathise with, hate, or maybe a mixture of the two.
Readers become invested in the people they meet between the covers of a novel, sometimes seeing them almost as friends. That’s why there is such an uproar when movie or TV adaptations take liberties with a book character. Remember the furore (justified in my opinion) when diminutive Tom Cruise was cast as Lee Child’s Jack Reacher? Another pet hate is the casting of Sharon Small as Barbara Havers in the Inspector Lynley Mysteries series, adapted from Elizabeth George’s books. She was NOTHING like the Barbara I saw in my mind’s eye.
I must hat tip to Amazon Prime and Michael Connelly though, for picking a perfect person to play Bosch in the popular series. Titus Welliver is Harry to a T. The same can be said for Brenda Blethyn in the title role of Ann Cleeves’ Vera.
There’s a debate to be had over all the examples I’ve quoted, so I was intrigued to find this article on the excellent My Modern Met site. Artist and film maker Brian Joseph Davis has used law enforcement sketch software, and author’s descriptions of characters in famous books, to create some fascinating portraits. It’s heartening to see that many of them resemble their screen iterations – maybe Hollywood bigwigs actually read books after all?