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5 Novel Based Movies Nominated For Oscars


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Powerful and meaningful literature has time and time again, shown just how impactful it is to woo audiences, bring them together, and leave a lasting impact on all of us.

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Words are powerful, even more powerful are the stories that they narrate, and the most powerful are the insights and emotions they bring forward in us.

Hence there is no doubt that many filmmakers across the planet have taken inspirations from some of the greatest works produced in black on white by renowned authors and writers.

According to a recent study by The Numbers, Jurassic World in 2015 has been accredited as the highest-grossing movies of all time based on Fiction Book/Short Story with over $1.6 billion earned worldwide.

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Next up on the list is the 2011 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II, which grossed over $1.3 billion on the Worldwide Box Office. The 2000s How Grinch Stole Christmas is the only one in the top hundred lists that earned more in the Domestic Box Office than the International Box Office.

In light of this information, let’s take a look at some of the best novel based movies that won the Oscars.

In the Heat of the Night


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Starring Sidney Poitier and Rod Steiger, In the Heat of the Night is a 1967 American mystery drama film based on John Ball’s 1965 novel of the same name. It is a perfect popcorn movie to this day.

The novel narrates Virgil Tibbs’ story, a black police detective from Philadelphia who becomes involved in a murder investigation in a small-town Mississippi.

American journalist Bosley Crowther of The New York Times called it the most powerful film at the time, with many critics praising the superb acting and exquisite screenplay along with the fact that the film was directed showcasing prejudice, manners, and moral of small Mississippi town.

Director Norman Jewison was praised for delivering a first-rate film in all respects. The Academy Film Archive preserved the film in 1997, and in 2002 it was labeled as being aesthetically, culturally, or historically significant by the US National Film Registry by the Library of Congress. The film won five Oscars out of its seven nominations.

Oscars Won:

  1. Best Actor – Rod Steiger
  2. Best Film Editing – Hal Ashby
  3. Best Picture – Walter Mirisch (Producer)
  4. Best Screenplay – Based on Material from Another Medium – Stirling Silliphant
  5. Best Sound – Samuel Goldwyn Studio Sound Department

Lord of the Rings


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The Lord of the Rings film series is based on the novel written by J. R. R. Tolkien and is a collection of three epic fantasy adventure films directed by Peter Jackson. The three films are titled The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), The Two Towers (2002), and The Return of the King (2003).

The film series was produced and distributed by New Line Cinema with the co-production of WingNut Films, an international venture between New Zealand and the United States.

The Lord of the Rings is widely regarded as one of the greatest and most influential film series ever made amongst the highest-grossing film series of all time with $2.981 billion worldwide box office. The series won 17 out of its 30 Academy Award nominations.

Oscars Won:

  1. Best Adapted Screenplay – Philippa Boyens, Fran Walsh, and Peter Jackson – The Return of the King
  2. Best Art Direction – Dan Hennah – The Return of the King
  3. Best Cinematography – Andrew Lesnie – The Fellowship of the Ring
  4. Best Costume Design – Ngila Dickson and Richard Taylor – The Return of the King
  5. Best Director – Peter Jackson – The Return of the King
  6. Best Original Song – Fran Walsh, Howard Shore, and Annie Lennox – The Return of the King
  7. Best Film Editing – Jamie Selkirk – The Return of the King
  8. Best Original Score – Howard Shore – The Return of the King
  9. Best Makeup – Peter Owen and Richard Taylor – The Fellowship of the Ring
  10. Best Makeup – Peter King and Richard Taylor – The Return of the King
  11. Best Original Score – Howard Shore – The Fellowship of the Ring
  12. Best Sound Editing – Christopher Boyes, Michael Semanick, Michael Hedges, and Hammond Peek – The Two Towers
  13. Best Picture – Peter Jackson, Barrie Osborne and Fran Walsh – The Return of the King
  14. Best Set Direction – Alan Lee and Grant Major – The Return of the King
  15. Best Sound Mixing – Christopher Boyes, Michael Semanick, Michael Hedges, and Hammond Peek – The Return of the King
  16. Best Visual Effects – Jim Rygiel, Joe Letteri, Randall William Cook and Alex Funke – The Two Towers
  17. Best Visual Effects – Jim Rygiel, Joe Letteri, Randall William Cook, and Alex Funke – The Return of the King

No Country for Old Men


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An American neo-Western film, No Country for Old Men, is based on Cormac McCarthy’s 2005 novel. It is a crime-thiller movie. It stars Javier Bardem, Tommy Lee Jones, and Josh Brolin. The film follows the story of a Texas welder and Vietnam War veteran in the desert landscape of 1980 West Texas.

Directed by Joel and Ethan Coen, the film won 76 awards from 109 nominations from multiple organisations, including four Academy Awards out of 8 nominations. Many young learners who seek literature review help have often cited the film for its take on the circumstance, conscience, and fate related themes.

Oscars Won:

  1. Best Adapted Screenplay – Joel and Ethan Coen
  2. Best Director – Joel and Ethan Coen
  3. Best Picture – Scott Rudin, Joel and Ethan Coen
  4. Best Supporting Actor – Javier Bardem

The English Patient


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A 1996 British-American romantic-war-drama film directed by Anthony Minghella, The English Patient, is based on the 1992 novel of the same name by Michael Ondaatje.

The film’s main plot revolves around four people who find themselves abandoned in a villa located in northern Italy during the last months of World War II.

At Student Essay, the film is often studied for its art style and delivery of narration which holds immense value for young academicians and young inspiring literature artists. The film received 12 Academy Awards nominations and won nine of them.

Oscars Won

  1. Best Actress in a Supporting Role – Juliette Binoche
  2. Best Art Direction – Stuart Craig and Stephanie McMillan
  3. Best Cinematography – John Seale
  4. Best Costume Design – Ann Roth
  5. Best Director – Anthony Minghella
  6. Best Film Editing – Walter Murch
  7. Best Original Dramatic Score – Gabriel Yared
  8. Best Picture – Saul Zaentz
  9. Best Sound – Walter Murch, Mark Berger, David Parker, and Christopher Newman

The Godfather Trilogy


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While the third part of the film series did not receive praises to the same extent as the earlier two films, The Godfather film series is heavily regarding as one of the greatest film series of all time.

The film series was directed by Francis Ford Coppola, inspired by the 1969 novel by Italian American author Mario Puzo. It won 9 out of a total of 28 Academy Award nominations.

Oscars Won:

  1. Best Actor – Marlon Brando – The Godfather
  2. Best Supporting Actor – Robert De Niro – The Godfather II
  3. Best Picture – Albert S. Ruddy – The Godfather
  4. Best Director – Francis Ford Coppola – The Godfather II
  5. Best Art Direction – Dean Tavoularis, Angelo P. Graham, and George R. Nelson – The Godfather II
  6. Best Adapted Screenplay – Francis Ford Coppola and Mario Puzo – The Godfather II
  7. Best Picture – Francis Ford Coppola, Gray Frederickson, and Fred Roos – The Godfather II
  8. Best Adapted Screenplay – Mario Puzo and Francis Ford Coppola – The Godfather
  9. Best Original Dramatic Score – Nino Rota and Carmine Coppola – The Godfather II


As an ending note, I would just like to say that filmmaking is not at all an easy task and can take up years of hard work. However, having a strong plot coming directly from a brilliant author’s genius works does help a lot.

No wonder these movies do so well because they have a terrific grip, and the adoption of literature to the big screen has often resulted in an outstanding response from the audiences.

There is just so much interest invested in the work from actors to audiences, and even critics are all swirled up in the symphony of a masterpiece that hardly fails to entertain and enthrall people.

Author Bio

Stella Lincoln currently works as the Assistant Editor at Dissertation Assistance and Master Thesis. She is quite fond of indulging herself in the pop-culture, including anime, movies, music, and even video games. During her free time, she likes to doodle and create wall art.


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