Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Film adaptations

Okay here is a list of film adaptations (from numerous other sources) which I would simply love to be made (or at least made properly).

Are you listening Hollywood? Thought not.

In no particular order:

“Just make the damn film already”:

Rendezvous with Rama

Morgan Freeman actually owns the rights to this and has been trying to get the funding to get this made for countless years. David Fincher has also been attached to it, but has recently indicated that at present there isn’t enough studio interest to get this made.

Stupid damn studio’s I say.

Les Miserables (The Musical)

The recent film musical adaptation of recent years have been rather hit or miss, but this more than any other musical deserves a movie adaptation (maybe Miss Saigon a close second).

I’ve seen it numerous times on stage and would always jump at the chance to see it again, having it for all time as a film would be a definite bonus.

The Dark Knight Returns

It is extremely unlikely that this will get made while the Batman franchise is as successful as it currently is, but all the same I don’t see why The Dark Knight Returns couldn’t be made as a separate entity to the current Batman films, after all it is set in a elseworlds type future where Batman is in his sixties. I’d personally cast Clint Eastwood as an older Batman.

The Dark Tower (series of films)

The Mist hinted at this, plus, anyone who is familiar with the Dark Tower books must have though “thinny” when the mist rolled onto the scene. Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof from Lost have optioned the Dark Tower from Stephen King for the grand sum of $19 (which fans of the series will recognise) and have said that they will be working on this together with J J Abrams after lost has finished it’s TV run. So here’s hoping that this actually goes forward either as a series of films or a TV series.

Midnight Nation

A little known 12 part comic series by J Michael Straczynski (Babylon 5).

A fantastic religious themed story which builds gradually until a fantastic conclusion. Easily as good as the best of his writing in Babylon 5, and perhaps even a little bit better. I remember hearing rumours about this and also his other series Rising Stars being turned into films, but have heard nothing since then. Maybe his renewed popularity following the release of Changeling will push this forward again (if not I’d happily accept a Babylon 5 feature film as an altenrative).

The Chrysalids

I make no excuses for being a big fan of John Wyndham and as such, I find it startling that The Chrysalids has never been adapted. His lessor works such as the Midwich Cuckoos (as Village of the Dammed) and Chocky have been adapted, but somehow not this. Next to The Day of the Triffids this is likely his best work, although it does differ a little from the themes of his other books.

I think some people consider this to be a bit of a childrens novel, but all the same it contains a great premise and a fantastic story.

Elektra Assassin

In my opinion the finest comic series from Frank Miller, even beating The Dark Knight Returns and Sin City series.

It’s frankly stunning, bonkers, confusing and erratic, so would probably make an odd adaptation, but all the same, some of the set pieces are fantastic. Also, I love the presentation of the American president and think that if they used a similar approach on film, it would be both bizarre and highly different than anything before it.

“A proper adaptation now please”:

The Day of the Triffids

This was made very poorly as a film in the 60’s and also as a slightly more successful TV series by the BBC in the 80’s, but neither have really captured the essence of the book. If I were a multimillionaire and had the opportunity to produce my own film of my choosing, it would be this.
I’m aware that the BBC is presently filming a new TV series based on the novel and I’m hoping (fingers crossed) that this is a superior adaptation.


I had high hopes that when Kenneth Branagh took the reins to adapt this that it would result in a close, word to word adaption akin to his Shakespeare adaptation… not so. His version, whilst the closest to the novel so far, still differs greatly and loses much of the fantastic dialogue.
Is it too much to ask for a decent adaption of one of the greatest novels of all time? I think not.

I am Legend

Adapted 3 times, and in each case they all completely and utterly cock it up.

Surprisingly it is the latest adaption which is the closest, but even that differs greatly from the novel.

I can see this being made on a small budget, with unknown actors , but sticking to the source material closer and making a fantastic film. I know it could be argued that the lack of dialogue would be a problem for the beginning of the film, but I think that other films out there have proven that this is not a problem, and you always have the flashback to break the solitude.

… but for god sake, KEEP THE DAMN ENDING IN PLACE! It’s called “I am Legend” for a bloody good reason.

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