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It Took Pages: Adapting Books to TV


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What do M*A*S*H, Game of Thrones, House of Cards, The Slap and The Family Law have in common? They’re all TV series that started their lives as books.

In this discussion, we’ll explore the unique challenges and rewards of adapting books to TV, with three people who have first-hand experience of the process. Our speakers will share their own stories and discuss some other famous and favourite examples.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of an established audience or fanbase? What happens when an author’s imaginative world must be conjured within the constraints of a production budget? And what are the special challenges of adapting a work of memoir, with actors cast to play real-life people? Join us for an inside peek into a very delicate creative process.


Julie Eckersley

Julie is a creative producer with over 20 years experience in the industry. She originally trained as an actress and has worked nationally and internationally on stage and screen, winning numerous awards. Julie currently works as a producer at Matchbox Pictures. She has produced documentary series A... Read more

Benjamin Law

Benjamin Law is the author of The Family Law (2010), Gaysia (2012), the Quarterly Essay Moral Panic (2017) and editor of Growing Up Queer in Australia (2019). He’s also an AWGIE Award-winning screenwriter who created and co-wrote three seasons of the award-winning TV series The Family Law (SBS... Read more

Clem Bastow

Clem Bastow’s debut nonfiction book Late Bloomer was published in July 2021. Her writing appears regularly in The Guardian, The Saturday Paper, The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald and The Big Issue. She co-wrote and co-presented the 2017 ABC podcast Behind The Belt, a documentary “deep di... Read more


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The Wheeler Centre acknowledges the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation as the traditional owners of the land on which we work. We pay our respects to the people of the Kulin Nation and all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders, past and present.