The world of YA adaptation is a fickle one. Sometimes you get a Hunger Games, but sometimes you get a Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. However, regardless of box-office performance, it’s hard to deny much of Hollywood’s recent YA fare has felt a little… lacking in creative diversity. Nearly every adaptation of recent memory takes place in some dystopian or post-apocalyptic future where a bunch of teenagers hold the key to humanity’s salvation. How much do these movie share in common? Enough so that Saturday Night Live felt it was time to take the movie industry to task in a new video sketch titled “The Group Hopper:”
It’s hard to argue with the evidence presented in this one. The Maze Runner, The Giver, Divergent… so many post-apocalyptic stories, yet so few new ways in which they’re told. Perhaps part of the problem has to do with Hollywood’s desire to always double down. The Hunger Games being a massive hit made studios think the key to YA success was all about a dystopian future rather than realizing what made The Hunger Games unique was its desire to cast an actress that could, well, act – though we will give props to The Maze Runner for casting the up-and-coming excellence that is Dylan O’Brien (watch some Teen Wolf, people) – as well as work to sell the film on its world rather than its young heartthrobs.
Surely there are other YA books out there worth adapting that don’t take place in a dystopian future. Let’s start seeing some of those, Hollywood!
Which YA book do you think would be ripe for adaptation? Let us know in the comments below.