ADAPTING A NOVEL INTO A MOVIE SCREENPLAY
Presented by Screenwriter and Co-Founder of 3rd action Asim Altokhais
During Hakaya Misk events that’s being organized by Prince Mohammed Bin Salman Bin Abdulaziz Foundation “Misk” and been held in Riyadh International convention and exhibition center from 7-11/August/2018, 3rd action company organized a panel discussion on Wednesday and Thursday 8-9/August/2018 titled “Adapting a novel into a movie screenplay”, and its been attended by entrepreneurs, producers, directors, media specialists, and filmmakers enthusiasts. Presented by Mr. Asim Altokhais a Screenwriter, Co-Founder at 3rd action, majoring in writing Film and TV from Vancouver Film School in Canada, award-winning screenwriter where his short film script (Open my eyes) won in Robert Bosch Stiftung completion in 2013, and Kitabi 21 from the Arab Thought Foundation for his graphic novel (Alaa: the bounty hunter) in 2015, and his short film script (X-13) where it won best short film in the Canadian Feedback Festival and Underground Indie Film Festival in 2017, and nominated for the semi-finals at the European Cinematography Awards in 2018, and his short film script (Intertwine) won first place by the U.S embassy and Nebras Films and American Film ShowCase in 2018.
The beginning of the session focused on the importance of novel and its influence on international and Arabian cinema, as Mr. Asim Altokhais about the relationship between novels and Cinema and how that Cinema started and raised on the novel shoulders from the early 19th century till our recent days where novels had been a huge part of cinema reaching to %80 from movie productions now in Hollywood while Europe only dependent on %20 as novels while the rest on original screenplays not based on current stories, novels or real events. Also, Mr. Asim Altokhais talked about his personal experience in adapting a novel into a movie screenplay which took a lot of work to do, because the novel has several layers of storylines while movies only need a clear single narrative storyline that we stick with it from start to finish.
As he also added to his personal experience adapting part of a novel he wrote into a short film that he filmed in Canada in 2017 titled (Meeting with the devil) from 3rd action films, and that short is participating in international film festivals. As Mr. Asim Altokhais mentioned some of the best Arabian novels that were adapted into movies based on their time period and the number of big events that happened in the novel which made it easy to adapt it into a movie, he also added some exampled for best novels that was adapted into movies and why they’re successful and contrary to that Mr. Asim Altokhais talked about some of Hollywood unsuccessful movies based on novels and why?
As Mr. Asim Altokhais insisted on having a specialized model to adapt novels into movie screenplays based on fundamental aspects such as plot, characters and details because of the importance of these three elements in the novel and here it comes to the professional screenwriter responsibility and awareness in reading the novel with extreme care for more than once to draw the main plot and whose point of view he’s going to take and all those important details that the reader knows and will look for it in the movie once it’s adapted.