The Telegraph
Wednesday , March 6 , 2013
Since 1st March, 1999
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Box-office watch boosts book buys

Watch the movie and buy the book! The windfall from the success of movies adapted from popular — and sometimes not-so-popular — books is keeping the tills at bookstores ringing. Even Chetan Bhagat wouldn’t mind the rub-off — after all it’s the sales, silly.

His 2008 book The 3 Mistakes of my Life, on which the film Kai Po Che! is based, is currently flying high on its hit track Manja and the bromance between three friends — Ishaan, Omi and Govind. Thanks to the Abhishek Kapoor hit, Bhagat’s book has now been printed afresh with a film tie-in edition.

According to Starmark, Calcutta, if The 3 Mistakes… was selling 250 copies on an average per month, sales soared to around 700-800 copies since the movie’s release on February 22.

Silver Linings Playbook, the romantic comedy adapted from Matthew Quick’s book bearing the same name, had eight nominations at this year’s Academy Awards and earned Jennifer Lawrence the Best Actress Oscar. The book is out of stock in India and overwhelmed city bookstores have been jotting down customer details with a polite: “We will inform you as soon as the book lands.”

“Movies such as The Da Vinci Code, 3 Idiots, Life of Pi and the Harry Potter and Twilight sagas pushed book sales to a new high and sometimes our stock ran out. Take the case of Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. After the (Julia Roberts) film’s release, there was a steady flow of women looking for the book,” recalled Sidharth Pansari, the director of Crossword bookstore.

This year, the list of book-film adaptations is growing by the week. It includes Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks, The Host by Stephenie Meyer, Carrie by Stephen King, Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan and The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

“People are aware of release of The Great Gatsby [with a special appearance by Amitabh Bachchan] and have started enquiring about the book,” Starmark CEO Gautam Jatia said.

“Many not-so-famous books have received reflected publicity because of the movie. Schindler’s Ark by Thomas Keneally became a bestseller only after the movie by Steven Spielberg,” Jatia said.

Screen adaptations kept bookstores and box offices happy last year, too. “Salman Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children, Mohsin Hamid’s The Reluctant Fundamentalist and Yann Martel’s Life of Pi were brought to the screen by Deepa Mehta, Mira Nair and Ang Lee respectively. Lee went on to win the Best Director Oscar,” said Maina Bhagat, director of Apeejay Oxford Bookstores.

The 2012 movies based on The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien of The Lord of The Rings series and The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins took the books to many homes.

Which book have you bought after watching the film? Tell