Hearing that one of your favorite classic novels or plays is going to be adapted for the big screen can be an emotional roller coaster, ranging from "Yay! I can't wait to see how they interpret the story!" to "Oh my God, I can't believe they're casting her [or him] in the leading role!"

This week marks the release of 'Jane Eyre,' based on the beloved novel by Charlotte Bronte. The book holds a dear place in the hearts of legions of women who related to the plucky heroine so passionately during their youth. That means there's undoubtedly a lot of pressure on relative newcomer Mia Wasikowska to deliver. She has a decent track record, with 'Alice in Wonderland' and 'The Kids Are All Right' already under her belt. Here's hoping she lives up to the great expectations.



Of course, adaptations run the gamut from amazing (pretty much anything starring Kate Winslet) to meh (Gwyneth Paltrow in 'Emma') to the downright awful (ahem, Demi Moore in 'The Scarlet Letter'). But when the adaptations are done right, the actor who does your favorite character justice can earn enough goodwill to forgive several stinkers going forward. A halo effect, if you will.
Sense and Sensibility Movie Poster
Sense and Sensibility
PG1995
Based on 21 critics

When Elinor Dashwood's (Emma Thompson) father dies, her family's finances are crippled. After the Dashwoods... Read More

The Wings of the Dove Movie Poster
The Wings of the Dove
R1997
Based on 18 critics

Kate (Helena Bonham Carter) is secretly betrothed to a struggling journalist, Merton Densher (Linus Roache).... Read More

Pride & Prejudice Movie Poster
Pride & Prejudice
PG2005
Based on 37 critics

In this adaptation of Jane Austen's beloved novel, Elizabeth Bennet (Keira Knightley) lives with her... Read More

Jane Eyre Movie Poster
Jane Eyre
PG-132011
In Theaters on March 11, 2011

As an orphaned child, Jane Eyre (Mia Wasikowska) is first cruelly abused by her aunt, then cast out and... Read More

Little Women Movie Poster
Little Women
1933
In Theaters on 1933

The endearing saga of the March sisters -- Meg (Frances Dee), Jo (Katharine Hepburn), Amy and Beth --... Read More