From ‘Blonde’ to ‘Gutsy’: The Most Anticipated Book Adaptations Heading to Screens in September

The Marilyn Monroe biopic is based on the Joyce Carol Oates book of the same name

Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in "Blonde"

August theatrical releases were a bit sparse, but “Partner Track,” “Lost Ollie” and seven other book-based projects found their way onto streamers last month, including HBO’s “Game of Thrones” prequel series “House of the Dragon.” September has more theatrical releases, but fewer book adaptations to look forward to. Those that are coming out this month have rich history though, especially “The Rings of Power” series that Amazon has based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s books and appendices.

There’s also “The Silent Twins” starring Letitia Wright and Jodhi May as well as Andrew Dominik’s feature film “Blonde” adapted from Joyce Carol Oates’ book about the career of Marilyn Monroe.

Here are six book to screen adaptations coming out in September:

“The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power”

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power - Official Trailer | Prime Video
The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power – Official Trailer | Prime Video

J.R.R. Tolkien’s fantasy series faces another imagining, this time with the help of The Appendices, which detail thousands of years of history during the Second Age of Middle-earth, before “The Hobbit” and the original “Lord of the Rings.” This context will set “The Rings of Power” apart from its predecessors. Morfydd Clark stars as Galadriel, Nazanin Boniadi plays Bronwyn, Peter Mullan appears as King Durin III. Benjamin Walker is High King Gil-galad and Robert Aramayo fills the role of Elrond.

After premiering on Sept. 2, new episodes of “The Rings of Power” are rolling out weekly on Prime Video.

“Tell Me Lies”


Emma Roberts and her Belletriste productions banner have spearheaded this adaptation of “Tell Me Lies” by Carola Lovering. The book, which came out in 2018, is now a TV show available to stream on Hulu. The story follows a toxic and addicting relationship that develops between Lucy Albright (Grace Van Patten) and Stephen DeMarco (Jackson White) over the course of 8 years.

After premiering on Sept. 7, new episodes of “Tell Me Lies” debut weekly on Hulu.

“After Ever Happy”

Prime Video

The fanfiction that rocked Wattpad and became a cinematic experience has one last installment arriving in U.S. theaters Sept. 7. Following “After We Fell,” “After Ever Happy” marks the fourth film and book in their respective series. Tessa (Josephine Langford) and Hardin (Hero Fiennes Tiffin) return in the Harry-Styles inspired sensation — written by Anna Todd — that moved from Wattpad to print to movie screens. Carter Jenkins will also star.

“After Ever Happy” is now playing in theaters, and a further sequel — “After Everything” — is already in the works.

“Last Light”

MGM/Twentieth Century Fox

Based on Alex Scarrow’s international best-selling novel, “Last Light” arrived on Peacock Sept. 8. Starring Matthew Fox, the five-episode limited series tells a story in a world without oil. Matthew Fox plays petro-chemist Andy Yeats, and Joanne Froggatt stars as his wife Elena. “Stranger Things” and “Game of Thrones” alum Tom Wlaschiha also appears as Karl Bergmann. Victor Alli (“The Man Who Fell to Earth”) will play Owen Jones. Alyth Ross and Taylor Fay portray the Yeats’ children Laura and Sam.

All five episodes of “Last Light” are now streaming on Peacock.


Tom Hanks Pinocchio

Academy Award-winning director Robert Zemeckis guides this live-action retelling of the beloved tale of a wooden puppet who wants nothing more than to become a human boy, written by Carlo Collodi in 1881 and 1882. Tom Hanks stars as Geppetto, the wood-carver who builds and treats Pinocchio (Benjamin Evan Ainsworth) as if he were his own son. Joseph Gordon-Levitt is conscientious Jiminy Cricket, who accompanies Pinocchio on his journey. Cynthia Erivo appears as the Blue Fairy, and Keegan-Michael Key is “Honest” John. Luke Evans is The Coachman and Sofia the Seagull (Lorraine Bracco) is a new character in this classic story.

After first premiering on Sept. 8, “Pinocchio” is now streaming only on Disney+.


Apple TV+

Hillary and Chelsea Clinton star in Apple TV+’s “Gutsy” which is based on the book “The Book of Gutsy Women.” The Clintons will go on adventures with women they consider role models as well as colleagues, including Glennon Doyle, Dr. Jane Goodall, Mariska Hargitay, Goldie Hawn, Kate Hudson, Kim Kardashian, Megan Thee Stallion, Amber Ruffin, Amy Schumer, Gloria Steinem, Wanda Sykes, Symone (aka Reggie Gavin), Abby Wambach, Natalie Wynn (aka ContraPoints), and many more. “The Book of Gutsy Women” was written by Hillary and Chelsea Clinton, and the two women also executive produced the series alongside Johnny Webb, Siobhan Sinnerton, Roma Khanna, Ken Druckerman, Banks Tarver and Anna Chai.

The eight-part docuseries premiered on Apple TV+ on Sept. 9.

“The Silent Twins”

Focus Features

Based on the true story and book by Marjorie Wallace, Letitia Wright and Tamara Lawrence portray June and Jennifer Gibbons, respectively, in “The Silent Twins.” The identical twin sisters hail from the only Black family in Wales, and they refuse to communicate to anyone but each other. What results is a hauntingly beautiful bond, accompanied by colorful imaginative scenes thought up by the girls. The pair become sentenced to psychiatric hospital Broadmoor after a few instances of vandalism. At the institution, they face the difficult decision of separating in order to live or remaining intertwined in a death sentence. Other cast members include Jodhi May, Michael Smiley, Jack Bandeira, Treva Etienne, Nadine Marshall and Tony Richardson.

“The Silent Twins” arrives in theaters September 16.


Bobby Cannavale and Ana de Armas in Netflix's "Blonde"

This book-based feature film, directed by Andrew Dominik, hits Netflix Sept. 23. The story is based off of Joyce Carol Oates’ best-selling novel, following Marilyn Monroe, portrayed by Ana de Armas, through the highs and lows of her career. According to the Netflix logline, “Blonde boldly reimagines the life of one of Hollywood’s most enduring icons, Marilyn Monroe. From her volatile childhood as Norma Jeane, through her rise to stardom and romantic entanglements, Blonde blurs the lines of fact and fiction to explore the widening split between her public and private selves.” Written and directed by Andrew Dominik, the film boasts a cast led by Ana de Armas and featuring Bobby Cannavale, Adrien Brody, Julianne Nicholson, Xavier Samuel and Evan Williams.

“Blonde” opens in select theaters on Sept. 16 and is streaming on Netflix starting Sept. 23.