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Make a Book Into a Movie

Map Lessons

Return to By the Book -- Activities for Book Week!

Subjects Arts & Humanities
  • 9-12
  • Advanced

Brief Description

Choose the cast for a movie based on a short story or novel.


  • select actors to play major roles in the film version of a popular short story or novel.
  • design a poster for the movie.
  • write reviews of the film.
  • create a script for one scene of the movie.


book, movie, writing, film, act, script

Materials Needed

  • selected novels or short stories
  • paper
  • pencils
  • poster paper
  • art supplies

Lesson Plan

In the Make a Book Into a Movie Project, Tina Marie Tedeschi describes a project she has designed to accompany her students' reading of the novel Billy Budd by Herman Melville. The activity has students serve as "casting directors" for a movie based on the book; they choose famous actors to play the key roles. The students also design a poster for the film, write positive and negative reviews, and create a script for one scene. This lesson can easily be adapted for use with other novels and short stories.


Student written work is collected and assessed using grade-level writing standards. If desired, students may act out their scripts and submit videotape to share with the class for evaluation.

Lesson Plan Source

National Standards

FINE ARTS: Visual Arts

    GRADES 9 - 12
    NA-T.9-12.1 Script Writing by Planning and Recording Improvisations Based on Personal Experience and Heritage, Imagination, Literature, and History
    NA-T.9-12.2 Acting By Assuming Roles and Interacting In Improvisations
    NA-T.9-12.3 Designing by Visualizing and Arranging Environments for Classroom Dramatizations
    NA-T.9-12.4 Directing By Planning Classroom Dramatizations
    NA-T.9-12.5 Researching By Finding Information to Support Classroom Dramatizations
    NA-T.9-12.6 Comparing and Connecting Art Forms By Describing Theatre, Dramatic Media (Such As Film, Television, and Electronic Media), and Other Art Forms
FINE ARTS: Visual Arts
    GRADES 9 - 12
    NA-VA.9-12.1 Understanding and Applying Media, Techniques, and Processes
    NA-VA.9-12.6 Making Connections Between Visual Arts and Other Disciplines

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Originally published 11/15/2002
Last updated 10/31/2007