Posts Tagged: Television

amberle

As reported by Entertainment Weekly, Poppy Drayton has landed the role of Amberle Elessedil in MTV’s adaptation of Terry Brooks’ The Elfstones of Shannara. Amberle is an elvish princess in exile after refusing her duties as a Chosen, caretakers of the mystical Ellcrys tree. Her past catches up to her, however, when she is swept away with young Wil Ohmsford on a quest to save the Elvish people from a demonic threat.

I’ve no real objections to Drayton’s casting, though my one bit of exposure to her, Downton Abbey, left me a lukewarm. The Elfstones of Shannara is a novel that relies heavily on the relationships between its myriad characters, and finding other actors that fit well alongside Drayton, and create a natural camaraderie and chemistry with her will be very important.

Like all Shannara fans, I’m most eager/interested/terrified to see who MTV chooses to cast as the looming Druid, Allanon.

Entertainment Weekly also reports that, “Jonathan Liebesman (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) will direct the first two episodes. He’ll also executive produce the series alongside Gough, Millar, Brooks, Dan Farah, and Jon Favreau (Iron Man).”

interstellar-concept-art

That’s a set of books where the influence they have is just fucking massive […] there are some ideas in those that’ll set your fucking hair on fire.

Via io9 and The Wrap, HBO has hired Johnathan Nolan, most recently known for his work on Interstellar, to write a television adaptation of Isaac Asimov’s seminal science fiction series, Foundation.

“Well, I fucking love the Foundation novels by Isaac Asimov,” Nolan told Indiewire on November 4th, less than a week before this news broke. “They’re certainly not well-known, but that’s a set of books I think everyone would benefit from reading. That’s a set of books where the influence they have is just fucking massive. They have many imitators and many have been inspired by them, but go back and read those, and there are some ideas in those that’ll set your fucking hair on fire.”

Nolan’s assertion that Asimov’s classic is ‘certainly not well-known,’ is a little fishy, especially coming from someone who works directly on major science fiction IPs like Interstellar, but his enthusiasm for the series is refreshing and encouraging.

Though there is no word on whether the adaptation will be ongoing, or a predefined mini-series of episodes, io9 points out that “the books have enough material to last a very long time.” Syfy hopes they have the Game of Thrones for science fiction fans in their adaptation of James S.A. Corey’s The Expanse series, but who better to usurp that title than the creators of televisions favourite fantasy and one of science fiction’s most legendary names?

Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie

Buy Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie: Book/eBook

Ann Leckie, author of the much lauded, and many award winning, novel, Ancillary Justice, announced on her blog that her Imperial Radch series has been optioned for television by Fabrik and Fox Television Studios. “They have previously worked together on The Killing for four seasons on AMC and Netflix,” Leckie said, “and they started their relationship with Burn Notice.”

Leckie warns her fans not to get too far ahead of themselves, though, citing Hollywood’s glacial pacing and labyrinthine nature. “Ancillary Justice has been optioned for TV,” she said. “Now, ‘optioned’ doesn’t necessarily mean that anything is going to actually happen–things get optioned and then never made, quite frequently.’

With the production of a television adaptation of James S.A. Corey’s Expanse series in full production, this is a great time to be a fan of televised science fiction. Though the question begs to be asked, where Corey’s work is straight forward science fiction with all the fixins for television, Leckie’s series is a whole different beast, and many of its strongest facets — such as its handling of gender, and its protagonist’s preternatural cognitive abilities granted to her as an ancillary — may prove difficult to adapt to a television script.

“Bringing [Ancillary Justice] to any sort of screen (not counting your eReader screen, of course!) would be… an interestingly difficult project,” Leckie admitted. “I made sure to have a conversation with the folks at Fabrik about my specific concerns–namely, the approach to gender, and the issue of whitewashing (as in, I do not want to see the book whitewashed, I would like to namedrop LeGuin and mention her Earthsea experience here, thank you). I was very pleased with their response.”

80s-90s-game-of-thrones

We’re all fans of Game of Thrones, right? If you’re in my age demographic (say, mid-twenties to late-thirties), you probably have some pretty strong opinions about pop culture in the ’80s and ’90s, right? Hell, if you’re older than that, you’re probably smart enough to shake your head at those strange days. From Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, to The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, and Bel Biv Devoe, I’m a fan. And, apparently, so is Mike Wrobel, of Moshi Studio, who took it upon himself to create these hilariously perfect renditions of the Game of Thrones cast if they lived in the ’80s and ’90s.

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iron-throne-simonetti

If the books and TV show seem to be revelling in the worst aspects of human nature, that’s partly because those aspects are what Westeros helps us to recognize in ourselves.

In a recent interview with Vanity Fair, George R.R. Martin discussed the past, present, and future of his mega-popular series, A Song of Ice and Fire, and its television adaptation, Game of Thrones. Some of the most interesting moments in the interview concern the future of HBO series and the potential that it might catch up with Martin’s work on the novels.

“The minute you have a series [of books] and a book comes out,” Martin explained (surprising no one), “people immediately begin asking, ‘Where’s the next book?’ And the more successful the series is, the more people ask that question, and the more pressure you begin to feel.”

Martin’s struggle against that pressure is one of the most publicized and scrutinized stories to hit SFF fandom is the past decade. Here’s a creator working on a seminal work of fantasy, adored by millions of people around the world, who is also crushed under the weight of his fame, criticized for his own fannish activities (such as watching football, or attending conventions) and condemned for not writing fast enough. As if works the calibre of those he’s producing can come over night.

Prominence of this issue hit its peak when Neil Gaiman, another writer who understands the intricacies of dabbling in many mediums, wrote an open letter to Martin’s detractors. “George R.R. Martin is not your bitch,” he famously said. “This is a useful thing to know, perhaps a useful thing to point out when you find yourself thinking that possibly George is, indeed, your bitch, and should be out there typing what you want to read right now.

“People are not machines. Writers and artists aren’t machines.” Read More »