Once upon a time, when you saw a movie you loved in the theaters, the fastest way to relive the action and excitement was to go to your local bookstore and pick up a copy of the novelization. Sometimes, the writer would depict events slightly differently than the film, or embellish the language slightly. (From the novelization of “X-Files: Fight the Future,” written by Elizabeth Hand: She strained harder to breathe as he thrust his fingers into her mouth, clearing her passageway. “Breathe, Scully.” He straddled her, palms flat against her chest as he pumped hard, forcing air into her.) But when you had to wait months for even the possibility of a VHS release, the novelization was there to tide you over.
Today, Funny or Die pays tribute to this still-precious art form, with some help from the great dramatic actor Brian Cox, who depicts that most noble of writers: The Novelizationalist. This short film tells the story of a man whose job it is is to tell the story of great films like “Raiders of the Lost Ark” and “E.T. The Extraterrestrial” — a responsibility he takes very seriously, with good reason. Check it out below.