It’s been a long time coming, but finally, Rob and Kristen’s highly-anticipated sequel is here! Just last week, Penguin Random House released On the Road Again, the much-anticipated follow-up to The Voyage of Harold Burden, which was first published in 1939 and instantly became an international bestseller. If you’ve been following along, you’ll know that it has been a struggle for the couple to find the right time to bring Harper back, but as we can all finally see, the wait was well worth it!

And what a ride it was. While we still don’t know exactly what happened on the road between Harold and Lili, we can surmise that it wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows. In fact, the pair encountered multiple challenges, including the flu, an injury, and potentially dangerous weather conditions, which would have made for a very dangerous journey. Despite all the adversity, though, they ultimately made it to their destination, which is a testament to their strength and dedication.

Now that they’re back, what’s next for Rob & Kristen? It’s obvious that they have a lot to work through, but from what we can see, they’ve also found a way to put their journey into good use and help others along the way. So far, they’ve donated over $150,000 to the Arizona Hospitality Foundation and established two foundations in the couples’ names. With their busy schedule and travel-heavy itinerary, it seems that keeping busy is one of the key elements to keeping the newlywed couple happy. But for now, we’ll let them take it easy and enjoy their well-deserved break.

The Inspiration For On the Road Again

While it’s been 22 years since the original Harold Burden, the world hasn’t forgotten about the great story of a man who sets out to reconnect with his love, only to find that fate has other plans for him. Over the years, the novel has inspired multiple films, including a 1989 comedy directed by Frank Oz starring Bette Midler and Dan Aykroyd, Scared Stiff, a 2007 horror film directed by D.J. Caruso, The Boy, a 2014 coming-of-age drama directed by Michael Suchey, and most recently, On the Road Again, the most recent cinematic adaptation of Ed McBriar’s classic novel.

The 2019 movie is an adaptation adapted by Nick Hornby and directed by Anthony Maras. While there are some significant differences between the novel and the film, such as the time frame and the addition of a romantic subplot, the fundamental story remains the same. In fact, Hornby took inspiration from The Voyage of Harold Burden for the story of Jack, a man traveling in Italy to find love and adventure. Jack’s journey is very similar to that of the main character in The Voyage of Harold Burden, and it’s clear that Hornby was very drawn to the story and its timeless appeal. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Hornby admitted that parts of this movie are really more of a homage to The Voyage of Harold Burden than anything else.

The Inspiration For The Boy And Scared Stiff

Another important historical novel that inspired multiple films is The Sun Also Rises, a 1926 novel by Ernest Hemingway. In this story, a group of strangers, who’ve just had a bit too much to drink, go on a fishing boat trip with a charming but reckless young man named Rick. Rick is fascinated by a fresh-water pear tree that he sees on the dock, and after some alcohol-fueled persuasion, he convinces the group to take a swim in the nearby pond. While trying to seduce the woman named Estelle, Rick gets caught in a riptide and struggles to keep himself afloat. Eventually, he’s rescued by Estelle, who then gets a gun stuck in her bikini and has to be saved by Rick. As Estelle nurses her wounds, she explains to Rick that this is how she feels every day, like someone is constantly trying to shoot her. She likens herself to a dog in the street and wishes she could just be like a normal human being and not have to keep sneaking around to avoid getting hit by stray bullets.

This story has been adapted into two critically acclaimed motion pictures. The first, directed by Martin Scorsese and released in 2007, is an intimate exploration of mid-century American bohemianism with cameos from George Harrison, Mia Farrow, Anjelica Huston, Richard Widmark, and more. The second, Scared Stiff, is a 2007 horror movie directed by D.J. Caruso and based on Hemingway’s novel. In this story, a couple, Mike and Maureen, are on vacation in Ireland when strange things start happening to their son, Bobby. While on a hike one day, Bobby is violently assaulted by a bear. When he regains consciousness, he discovers that seven years have passed and that he’s now a grown man. During one of his flashbacks, we learn that the strange things that happened to Bobby were caused by ghosts who live in the vicinity. Like Estelle in Hemingway’s novel, Bobby is constantly afraid that he’s going to be killed by one of these ghosts. When Maureen finds out about the bears and ghosts, she demands that they leave Ireland immediately, which is when the story really takes off.

Ghost Stories And Fog

There’s also the 1947 film noir classic Dark Passage, which was adapted from a James Cain novel and directed by Jean Negulesco. In this story, Nick and Nora, an aspiring writer and a nightclub singer, get involved in a murder investigation after being hired to write a book about the Black Dahlia murders in Hollywood. While interviewing potential murder victims, they come across a wealthy socialite named Maddy, who’s very suspicious of their true intentions. After an uncomfortable dinner guest turns up dead, Nick and Nora are forced to work together and try to unravel Lady Maddy’s mysterious past.

One of the most memorable scenes in Dark Passage comes when Nora wanders the streets of Hollywood at nightfall, looking for inspiration. She stumbles upon a strange man playing the piano in the park, but when she tells him that she’s looking for inspiration, he assures her that she won’t find any in the park at nightfall. He offers to tell her where she can find it, but before she knows it, he’s pressed her against the wall and is groping her. As this is happening, an eerie fog has settled over Hollywood, giving the scene an otherworldly feel that perfectly matches the horror movie atmosphere.

The Influence Of Literature

While movies and books can and often do influence one another, sometimes they come together to create something special. Take, for example, Stephen King’s 1986 horror classic The Shining. From the very beginning, King establishes a link between the events of the novel and the movie, in the form of a letter addressed to Donald J. Brand, who was the president of Warner Bros. at the time. In the letter, King implores Brand not to make the usual film adaptation of his book, but rather to make a “mini-series of theater performances of short plays by William Shakespeare.” After reading the letter, Brand sat down with King and had a conversation about the potential of a Theatrical release for The Shining.

The main difference between the movie and the book is the casting. While King’s books are usually quite accurate to the Victorian era and place, the film mostly sticks to modern conveniences, such as indoor plumbing and cars. Nevertheless, this is still a faithful adaptation and stands as one of the most significant entries in the annals of film history. More recently, the movie version of The Shining was ranked as the 13th greatest horror movie of all time by Salon.

It Was All In Vain

Sometimes, authors and screenwriters get their movies made before their books are published. The most well-known example of this is David Edinger’s 1968 movie It Was All in Vain, based on his 1966 novel of the same name. When the book was first published, few people had heard of Edinger, and it was considered a flop when it was initially released. However, after several years, it began to find an audience and became a cult classic, due in large part to the efforts of film historian Kevin Brownlow, who worked with Edinger on bringing this semi-forgotten film back to life.