16 Netflix Shows and Movies From 2020 That Are Based on Books
Netflix movies based on books are nothing new, and there are more shows and movies than ever that are getting inspiration from the best novels, memoirs, and comic books out there. In 2020 alone, there have already been more than a dozen new shows and movies on Netflix that have been adapted from or inspired by books, and there are plenty more to come. If you loved some of these Netflix originals this year, you absolutely should check out the books they were based on! Keep reading to see which 2020 Netflix originals are based on books — and put together your next perfect book list while you're at it.
All the Bright Places
Based on a YA novel, the teen tearjerker narrates a romance between two mentally ill teenagers who make a pact with each other to see and appreciate "all the bright places" in the world, even as potential tragedy looms large.
To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You
Peter and Lara Jean are back in the To All the Boys I've Loved Before sequel, based on the novel of the same name by Jenny Han. As Peter and Lara Jean figure out how to have a real relationship, things hit a snag with the return of John Ambrose McClaren — the last remaining recipient of Lara Jean's letters.
Lois Lowry's beloved children's book gets the animated treatment in this Netflix adaptation. When their parents neglect them, a set of siblings plan to send their parents away and raise themselves. Of course, their plan leads to unforeseen consequences that require them to fight even harder to stay together as a family.
The Last Thing He Wanted
Joan Didion's 1996 novel became a Netflix original movie starring Anne Hathaway, Ben Affleck, and Willem Dafoe, among others. Set in 1984, it follows a journalist who quits her job to care for her father, then inherits his drug-running business.
The Kissing Booth 2
Like the 2018 original, The Kissing Booth 2 is based on the YA series by Beth Reekles. This time, it's based on the sequel book, The Kissing Booth: Going the Distance, in which college decisions threaten the future of Elle and Noah's relationship.
The mystery thriller, starring Amy Ryan, is based on the true-crime book Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery by Robert Kolker. When a woman's daughter goes missing, her quest for answers leads to the uncovering of a wave of unsolved murders of sex workers by the Long Island serial killer and the dangers women face.
The Old Guard
Summer's surprise hit is actually based on a comic book by Greg Rucka. The action thriller follows an immortal band of mercenaries as they discover a new immortal and find themselves being hunted for their powers as their pasts come back to haunt them.
All Together Now
Based on the novel Sorta Like a Rockstar by Quick, this movie stars One Day at a Time's Justina Machado and Moana herself, Auli'i Cravalho, along with comedy legend Carol Burnett, in a drama about a musically gifted teenager fighting for her dreams and her friends.
Release date: Aug. 28
The famous Gothic novel about a second wife's unsettling discoveries is getting another remake, this time starring Lily James as Mrs. de Winter and Armie Hammer as Maxim de Winter.
Release date: Oct. 21
The Baby-Sitters Club
The classic book series by Ann M. Martin gets a 21st-century update. Kristy, Claudia, Stacey, Mary Anne, and Dawn build a babysitting business together and do their best to help the kids they work with, all while dealing with the ups and downs of junior high.
Netflix's twist on Arthurian legends is actually based on a novel by Frank Miller and Tom Wheeler. It becomes the coming-of-age story not just of King Arthur but also a young woman named Nimue, whose magical gifts will eventually lead her to become one of the most significant characters in the legends of Camelot.
I Am Not Okay With This
Reuniting It costars Sophia Lillis and Wyatt Oleff, the sci-fi-tinged dramedy follows a teenage girl who discovers she's developing telekinetic powers. It's based on a comic book by Charles Forsman, who also penned The End of the F***ing World, another comic book turned Netflix series.
Locke & Key
Netflix's latest supernatural teen show is also based on a comic-book series by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodríguez. After their father's murder, three kids and their mother move into his family home, where they discover a series of magical keys and doors — and a malevolent entity searching for the keys, too.
Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C. J. Walker
Self Made isn't just based on a book but also on a true story. The miniseries is based on the biography On Her Own Ground by A'Lelia Bundles, which in turn narrates the life of Madam C.J. Walker, a hair-care entrepreneur and the first Black, self-made, woman millionaire in America.
Netflix's charming small-town drama is based on a book series by the same name by Sherryl Woods. There's plenty of book material for the drama about three lifelong best friends dealing with love, motherhood, and careers in a small town: Woods's book series has a whopping 11 novels in it!
Netflix's first series in which Yiddish is the main language is also based loosely on a real memoir: Deborah Feldman's autobiography, Unorthodox: The Scandalous Rejection of My Hasidic Roots. Although the characters are different, the story remains the same: an ultra-Orthodox Jewish woman escapes her arranged marriage and starts a new life that she's not entirely ready for.