Child-Friendly Movies

Top Child-Friendly Movies Based on a Novel

A bestselling novel always manages to capture the attention of Hollywood, and there has since been a long list of book-to-movie adaptations released over the past decades. In 2016, a lot of child-friendly movies graced the big screen. There was The BFG, which is based on the classic children’s story by Roald Dahl as well as the Lewis Carroll novel Alice: Through the Looking Glass, which was helmed by Tim Burton.  

Today, ExploreTalent is looking back at children’s books that were given the onscreen treatment. On this list, you will find the novel adaptations that rose to become both critical and commercial hits. Find out if your favorite film made it to the list below.

5 Successful Child-Friendly Movies Based on Novels

5. Mary Poppins (1964)

Mary Poppins

This Disney-produced film is actually based on a children’s book series of the same name. It stars Julie Andrews as Mary Poppins as she visits a dysfunctional English family. The movie mixes both live-action and animated scenes together and was released to universal acclaim. Still one of the most iconic child-friendly movies Disney has ever gifted the world, Mary Poppins even won five of its thirteen nominations during the Academy and continues to be one of the studio’s most successful movies to date.

4. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (2001)

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

The first installment of the highly successful franchise was based on the novel series of the same name by J.K. Rowling. Not only did Harry Potter rise to earn billions in the box office, but it also made stars out of its lead actors. Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint quickly became household names, and they also went on to have successful careers after the movies ended.

3. The Wizard of Oz (1939)

The Wizard of Oz

This won’t be the list of successful novel to movie adaptations without The Wizard of  Oz. Based on the children’s classic by L. Frank Baum, this movie was nominated for Best Picture during the Academy Award but lost to Gone with the Wind. Despite that, the legacy left by The Wizard of Oz was encompassable and its main soundtrack “Somewhere over the Rainbow” has been continuously loved through different decades.

2. The Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009)

The Fantastic Mr. Fox

Wes Anderson has a knack for creating quirky and whimsical films, and The Fantastic Mr. Fox is exactly just that. This movie based on the novel by Roald Dahl features George Clooney as the voice of Mr. Fox, and it almost seems like this role was written specifically for him as he perfectly captures the sly and charming cleverness of the said character.

1. Coraline (2009)


This Oscar-nominated dark fantasy tells the story of a young girl named Coraline who travels through an alternate world. There, she finds that all her desires are met. But as the story progresses, Coraline soon realizes that the characters in this other world have nothing but malicious intentions in store for her. The film is based on a novel of the same name by Neil Gaiman, which was published in 2002.