November 28, 2009

Percy Jackson Movie vs. Book

Pjato_130 The Lightning Thief movie is coming out February 12, 2010. Of course we are all super-excited, but the big question for fans of the book is: Will it be a lot different than the book?

Here are 3 different answers from 3 key people who are very close to the book and the movie. . .

Brandon T. Jackson, the actor who plays Grover, has this to say:
“Of course you can go into more detail, but it’s already two and a half hours. And it’s not long in a bad way but there’s only so much you can put in it. I think that they got all the major points of the story. That’s what makes it really cool. Chris [Columbus] is such a great director because he had to do it in a way where it really is entertaining and is also — you can’t take everything from the book. You’ll get some flak from a lot of the kids who will say, “I didn’t expect Grover to look like this.” “I didn’t expect Alexander to look like this.” But when you take it for the entertainment value I think the movie comes out to be really really cool from what I saw. It sticks pretty close to the book with the characters and everything the way they are. It balances out well for entertainment value for people who haven’t read the book, and for people who have read the book you can go back and draw your own conclusions and have your own magical experiences.”

Logan Lerman, the actor who plays Percy, also weighs in:
“With portraying Percy I tried to keep it — I didn’t want to change that that much. Except for the fact that I’m a little bit older than the written character. But the truth is we changed a lot of the book. We changed a lot of things around to make the movie work because you have to make things a little bit different so it can be its own film and work on screen. We changed a lot of the things though. But I’m pretty sure that fans of the book will be able to appreciate Rick’s writing, and will still accept this as a different medium from the book that adds a whole different take on the book from another person’s eyes, from Chris Columbus’ vision and even makes it more grand, even more unique. It’s really cool.”

Rick_riordan And finally, Rick Riordan, the author himself offers his opinion of the movie on his blog:
“Will the movie be exactly like the book? Well to start with, I have never seen a movie that was exactly like the book it came from, so I think it’s safe to say no. Movies are a totally different medium. What you’ll be seeing is not The Lightning Thief book copied page for page onto the screen. What you’ll be seeing is Chris Columbus’ interpretation of The Lightning Thief story. . . Let the movie be the movie, and the books be the books, and try to enjoy the story without getting too worked up about any differences.”

So there you have it. What do you think? Will the movie be as good as the book? Let me know what you think in the Comments.

image from

Sonja, STACKS Staffer

Brandon T. Jackson and Logan Lerman interviews by Marie Morreale

UPDATE January 29, 2010:
Check it out! We’ve got more Lightning Thief cast interviews!

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  1. sarah


  2. nnndsjhcjbksddqoipoejcnlz

    what the heck. i thought that the pearls were gived to him by his daddio. and whats up with all the differences? clarrise was my fav person in the books and shes not even in the movie! and what bout the river of love? and duznt percy give the flying shoes to grover? i am so upset i will never live again. i hope they do a re-make of it.

  3. chase

    i did not like the movie compared to the book. i think you should eathier read the book or watch the movie or else you will be upset.

  4. Kendyl

    I saw the movie and was very dissapointed.. :( they completely changed the plot the acting is horrible, the special effects were like a disney channel movie. i know that movies arent exactly like the books but COME ON!! the movie should be re-named percy jackson and the olympians the search for persiphones pearls (wich isnt in the book) and ares and clarrise are not even in it and there is a battle with luke?!?!

  5. Bonnie

    I hated to movie. The didn’t just make teensy changes, they left out major point. It was Aries who stole to lightning, where was clarisa, the orical, and this kid was not 12. Loved the books.

  6. Maddie

    I watched the movie the first day it came out. I have to admit I was disapointed because it was SO different. But what good would it be if you were just seeing the same things from the book. If you have read the books then it would be a bit boring. I expected I would know everything that was coming but I didn’t. What good would it be if you knew what was going to happen. I give it 5 stars!!

  7. s

    i already read the first and the second book.. and im so excited to watch the movie but its turns out to be different… yeah we can say that its different from movie and books but, why they change some major part of the book… like the pearls and everything…. im kinda disappointed about it…
    the director change everything what the writer portrays in the book.

  8. FantasyReader07

    I saw it. I thought the movie was okay, but some of the things could have TOTALLY been changed. I mean, the kids didn’t sneak out, they went to Hades as a quest. They thought he had the lightning bolt. And there was never a duel to the death between Luke and Percy, it was Ares! And at the end, Grover went off in a search for Pan. Plus, he had horns through the whole thing, and was getting his searchers license. Really kind of disappointed as far as being true to the book. But it was a good movie if you disregard being true to the book.

  9. harryisthebest

    i saw the movie friday and it still had a lot of the same themes of the book. i didn’t expect them to change so much. the pearls werent that bi g a deal in the book, but a lot of the same things still happened. i was pretty happy with it. :)

  10. BlackMouth182

    I went to see the Lightning Theif movie, and well…lets just say its only like half the book. I cant wait `till “The Sea of Monsters” movie.

  11. jittery7

    Man, I was so exited when I went to go see this that when the movie started, I accidently snorked a peice of popceorn up my nose!!! I thought that it was really a good movie compared to the book which was really good too. Even so, the movie was really funny!They were both equally good, in my opinion.

  12. lee

    i love the book and im so exited to see the movie and Rick Riordan is my fav auther but he spends a whole page describing Anabeths hair and in the movie shes brunette!!!!!!

  13. Katie

    I saw the movie opening day (*squeals*) and it was COMPLETELY different than the movie. I won’t give anything away, but they completely cut out major parts in understanding the next few books. (SPOILER ALERT: there was no scene with Ares and Kronos was never even mentioned) I still thought the movie was amazing!

  14. Jess

    It’s not even close. They left out MAJOR MAJOR plot points and characters. I’m not even sure how they’d make a second movie since they have nowhere to start from. I don’t want to give spoilers but the two main villians aren’t even characters in the movie. The whole reason behind the lightening bolt being stolen is changed. Even the characters they do have aren’t the same. There is so much missing from the movie. I certainly didn’t expect it to be exact. I understand that it is a movie, not a book and things need to be changed. The age thing, for instance, is minor. But they didn’t even get close. Huge stuff is changed or missing. It’s not like they couldn’t make the movie with that stuff in there either. They just didn’t feel like it I guess. It’s not a bad movie. I just don’t see why it even pretends to be from the book. The names are right. That’s about it.

  15. cee cee

    There were major differences. Ares and Clarisse were’nt in the movie at all. That changed the plot and switched the main antagonist. The personalities of characters were noticeably different in the movie than the book.The movie has Annabeth all warrior, rather than mostly brainiac. Grover was a take charge, confident, cool, ladies man in the movie,barely recognizable from his literary counterpart. This difference was so dramatic, it was distracting. I suppose these differences were made to main characters by director Chris Columbus in an effort to limit the inevitable comparisons to Harry Potter. But why change the person who sets Percy up from Ares to Luke?

  16. camp half blood

    Yhe movie was sooo different and it skipped a lot of parts in the book, but it was one of the best moviues ever.Cant wait till sea of monsters.

  17. leslie

    I was very disappointed in the movie and not because it was so different from the book, but because of the use of language. My 8 year old loves the books and has been so excited about the movie coming out and i had explained to him that movies are never true to the book but this movie was way off. Percy and his friend are 12 in the first book not teenagers. Shame on the people who took a beloved book for young childern and made it into this. We will not be seeing any more of the Percy Jackson movies if they come out.

  18. jl456

    The movie’s missed out on some major characters and plot lines from the book. It was extremely disappointing. I know that movies cannot be the same as the book but this movie really changes the story. The Harry Potter movies stay closer to the book. For example the Percy Jackson movie is missing:
    The Oracle
    The God of Wine – the camp director
    anything about the Mist
    any distinct character about Olympus – the chairs are supposed to be different for each god!
    These are integral parts of the book that could have been addressed instead of spending time making up a whole new story!

  19. David

    After seeing the movie, I feel a little disappointed. The lack of mist, Ares, Dionysus and Kronos really make me worry that if more movies are made, they will be totally different.

  20. Michelle

    My son loves the whole Percy Jackson series and could not wait to see the film version. We went to see the movie today and he left so upset and wishes we never went. The only thing the same in this movie were the kids names. I can’t see there being a second movie unless Chris Columbus just rewrites the book (which is basically what he did to this one!) VERY SAD this had the potential to be great, but sadly this will go down in flames with Eragon and The Golden Compass:(

  21. Zach

    I was very disappointed in the movie. I understand that you can’t fit all the detail of a book into a movie, but a lot of the main details were left out. Clarisse is one of the main characters when it comes to the later books, and it didn’t even introduce her in this movie. There are also many other important characters that weren’t even mentioned and i thought the whole point of the gods not being able to talk to their kids (especially the Big Three) was because of the Oracle and the kid turning 16. They didn’t even mention the Oracle in this!
    It is a very good movie for someone who has not read the book. But being I have read all 5 books numerous times, I was very disappointed. I am hoping for a movie for every book, but I hope they step the next ones up and add more of the main detail.

  22. kk

    I apsolutly love the first book and i am in the middle of the second book.
    I really hope the movie is mostl like the book……. bt have you ever had that. I cant wait to see this movie

  23. sam

    I just saw the movie, and wow, soo different. Story plot, details, enemies, the list could go on and on. The part where he meets the greek gods is pretty much on target. It shouldn’t be related to the book in anyway. Whole new story line.