Over the years, countless children's films have dominated the box office, with literature remaining a constant source of fresh material.

Some of the more obvious children’s book-to-screen adaptations include Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings, while other beloved classics such as The Wizard Of Oz and Charlie And The Chocolate Factory were also inspired by novels. 

Below, we pick a quartet of our own favourites...


This 2009 stop-motion animation from director Henry Selick (The Nightmare Before Christmas) was inspired by British author Neil Gaiman’s novella, originally published in 2002. 

Fantastic Mr Fox 

Similarly to Coraline, Fantastic Mr Fox is another stop motion animation that has amassed a cult following since its release. Based upon Roald Dahl’s novel of the same name, the film was directed by Wes Anderson, with the Guardian hailing his rendition "truer to Roald Dahl than most". 

101 Dalmatians 

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The Disney classic, 101 Dalmatians is adapted from the 1958 novel by Dodie Smith. One of the most iconic Disney movies ever made, popular among both audiences and critics, it has taken in almost $1 billion in box office sales over its lifetime - making it the most profitable children’s book-to-screen adaptation. A live-action prequel starring Emma Stone is set for release in 2021.


Similarly to 101 Dalmatians, Disney’s Pinocchio has also amassed considerable success over its 80-year lifespan. Despite being a box office disappointment when it was initially released (partially due to the outbreak of World War II) it went on to earn over $600 million through a series of re-releases. The animated film is based upon the novel of The Adventures of Pinnochio by Italian author Carlo Collodi, originally released in 1883. A new adaption from Guillermo Del Toro is currently in production. 


The 2001 animation Shrek is loosely based upon the 1990 fairy tale picture book of the same name by William Steig. Ranking number 5 on the top children’s book-to-film adaptations, Shrek gained immense popularity upon its initial release, with the franchise going on to make Shrek 2, Shrek the Third, Shrek Forever After and, yes, Shrek 5 in the works.