Where the Wild Things Are is a beloved children’s story by Maurice Sendak, published in 1963. This classic story follows Max’s journey through the wild world of imagination, leading him to discover new friends and exciting adventures.
The story follows Max as he travels to a place known as The Wild Things’ Zone, a world populated by wild creatures he gets to know and befriend. He is even crowned as king of this magical place.
As the story progresses, Max embarks on a wild journey of self-discovery, facing fears and learning the importance of returning home.
When the story was originally published in 1963, it caused a stir due to its rebellious theme, use of vibrant and unusual imagery, and illustration style.
Maurice Sendak’s imaginative artwork swept the world, capturing the minds of adults and leading to the development of multiple story spin-offs in different media formats.
The Wild Things character costumes were designed and handmade by Jim Henson’s Creature Shop for the 2009 film adaptation, garnering great praise for their fantastical design and realistic facial movement.
American singer-songwriter and actor Carole King composed the iconic ‘Wild Thing’ song. The song was featured in the movie and released as a single, reaching number 30 in the UK singles chart.
The Wild Things have been impersonated and referenced by a variety of celebrities and public figures in America, including Hillary Clinton, Will Ferrell, and Kristen Wiig.
In 2010, the National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature organized an art exhibition featuring art inspired by the book’s illustrations, with works from over 30 renowned illustrators from around the world.
The story has inspired many board games and video games, such as the Where the Wild Things Are-themed board game (1984) and Adventure Tour Through Never Land (1997).
In 2011, Spike Jonze and theater director Dave Matthews adapted the book into a successful stage play. It included live music, oversized puppets, and original songs composed by Jonze and Karen O.