George RR Martin keeps complaining that screenwriters adapt stories and make them their own: “They never make it better, they make it worse”

George R. R. Martin he is best known for creating the worlds within his book series game of Throneswhich at one point was the biggest show on television.

It famously took a nosedive in recent seasons and fans, as well as Martin himself, were very dissatisfied with how the series played out. Martin has spoken openly about his disappointment with the writers and showrunners, who he feels took too many liberties in adapting his work.

Now, Martin continues to complain that not only his books, but the work of most other writers, are adapted with too little care.

The writer recently took to his personal blog to explain:

“Very little has changed since then. If anything, things have gotten worse. Everywhere you look, there are more and more writers and producers eager to take great stories and “make them their own.” It doesn’t seem to matter whether the source material was written by Stan Lee, Charles Dickens, Ian Fleming, Roald Dahl, Ursula K. Le Guin, JRR Tolkien, Mark Twain, Raymond Chandler, Jane Austen, or… well, anyone.

“No matter how important a writer is, no matter how good the book, there always seems to be someone on hand who thinks they can do better, eager to take the story and ‘improve’ it. “The book is the book, the movie is the movie,” they’ll tell you, as if they’re saying something profound. Then they make the story. They never improve it, though. Nine hundred and ninety-nine times out of a thousand they make things worse.”

Martin, however, said that “every now and then we get a great adaptation of a great book, and when that happens, it deserves applause.” Such is the case with FX’s recent adaptation of Shogunwhich is currently considered the frontrunner for the Emmy for drama series.

“I was dubious when I first heard that they were making another version of Clavell’s novel. It’s been a long time, a very very LONG time, but I read the book when it first came out in the late 70’s and was very impressed. And the 1980 miniseries starring Richard Chamberlain as Anjin was a long-running television landmark, along with “Roots”; why do it again, when that version was so good?

“I’m glad they did it, though. The new ‘Shogun’ is superb… I think the author would have been happy with it. Both old and new writers have honored the source material and given us extraordinary adaptations, resisting the urge to ‘make it their own.’”

During his 2022 chat with Neil Gaiman, Martin asked: “How faithful do you have to be? Some people don’t feel like they have to be faithful at all. There’s this phrase going around: “I’ll make it mine.” I hate that phrase. And I think Neil probably hates that phrase too.

“Yes,” Gaiman replied. “I spent 30 years watching people create The Sandman theirs. And some of those people hadn’t even read The Sandman to make it their own, they had simply flipped through some comics or something.

FX is currently developing a second season of Shogun. Read Martin’s full blog post here.

via: Variety

by Jessica Fisher
Source: Geek Tyrant

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