Hollywood's 25 Most Powerful Authors
Even after eight movies and $7.6 billion in worldwide grosses, Rowling considers herself “a real outsider” in Hollywood. But the 47-year-old holds sway over a sprawling kingdom that includes theme parks, the Pottermore website and an array of merchandise. Her first adult novel, The Casual Vacancy, debuted in September to decent reviews and sales. “I think it lends itself better to TV than film,” she says, but is in no hurry to see it adapted. And she won’t let anyone else take a spin with the Potter characters. “I can imagine it: They’re getting it wrong, and I’m writhing with agony in the afterworld because I’ll surely be dead,” she says. Rowling also has no intention of doing a George Lucas-style deal to sell control of her universe to a media conglomerate. “If I ever do such a thing, you’ll know I had a gun to my head or lost my marbles,” she says. Rowling admits interest in “one day” writing an original screenplay but jokes she’ll only do it if Steve Kloves, who scripted all eight Potter movies, “is around to point out where I’ve messed up.” Kloves, whom she calls “my Yoda,” helped her resist an early suggestion to make the movie Harry Potter a wisecracking jokester. Rowling’s advice to authors trying to navigate Hollywood? “Get yourself a really, really good agent.” For the record, Rowling’s is London’s Neil Blair.