Tag Archives: Gavin Hood

Ender’s Game To Be Released In IMAX

With production wrapped up earlier this summer, and the release date not set till next year, news regarding the film adaptation of Orson Scott Card’s sci-fi novel Ender’s Game has been scarce. But one peice of information released this past week is that the film will indeed be released in IMAX.

Ender’s Game is set in the future (and mostly in aboard a space station)  when man is preparing for war against an alien race referred to as the Buggers. The first book in Card’s series follows Ender Wiggin, a young boy who’s recruited to join a fleet of children preparing for battle by playing strategy games and undergoing other forms of training. While Ender is smaller and younger than most of the other recruits, he soon proves to be something of a tactical genius.

The film adaptation is the first after several attempts since the novel’s release in 1985. The film, directed by Gavin Hood, stars Asa Butterfield as Ender, with Harrison Ford playing Colonal Graff, and Ben Kingsley playing Mazer Rackham.

During the production, the producer  Roberto Orci, provided fans with weekly updates on their official production blog that included glimpses of the set and actors and information regarding the project.

Releasing the film in IMAX will be a good movie on the part of Lionsgate. Given the setting of the novel, fans are excited to see the famed Battle Room ( a room where the kids train while battling in zero gravity) which has the potential to look amazing on a larger screen such as an IMAX screen.

While we wait for more information regarding the upcoming adaptation, you can always remember: The enemy’s gate is down.

8 Reasons I Love Ender’s Game

Ender’s Game is a novel written by Orson Scott Card and published in 1985. Since then it has remained a cult favorite among sci-fi fans. After several years of attempts it is finally moving forward with a film adaptation directed by Gavin Hood and staring Asa Butterfield as Ender.

With the film on its way, I began reading the iconic novel. After only a few pages in, I was hooked. I finished it over the course of probably a few days. I can tell why it is so popular, however, I can see why it took so long to be made into a film. We just now have the technology to do the adaptation right.

Along with reading the novel, I was able to listen to the audiobook as well. This was really great because at times I was really into the novel but had to leave. Thankfully, I was able to pick up where I left off with the audiobook while driving without missing a beat in the story. It was a great companion to the paperback. If you are a busy reader, having the audiobook in your car will make things so much easier. I promise!

So, after finishing the story, I am SO excited to see the film. So, here are eight reasons I loved the novel and I can only hope they keep these things in the movie.

The Tone

I love the tone of this novel. Despite the serious content, it is not all serious. There are several moments in the novel that are used to break up the tension. It can be very overwhelming to have a novel that is one serious scene after another. However, as the story progresses those moments are fewer and fewer because we head to the climax. Not to mention the switch in prospective from Ender to Gruff. The aid is showing the audience that what Ender is working toward is even more important that he realizes. It is very effective storytelling in my opinion.

The Surprises

There are SO many surprises in this novel. I don’t just mean twists, I mean things that are surprising to the point that I literally set the novel down just to grasp what I had read. Despite all the surprises though, it didn’t ever feel like they were arbitrary or just thrown in there to create tension. It felt more honest and less sensational. Some of the surprise moments even caused me to flip back in the novel and re-examine something I had read. Not many novels surprise me, usually I can see something coming, but there were moments I didn’t see. A fantastic read, definitely.

Ender

I loved this main character. At the beginning I was very skeptical of the characterization. At the young age of Ender, I had a problem believing he could talk and act the way he did. However, the longer I read this book, the more I liked him. The more the audience grows to know him. I think it aids a lot to the story to not see what Graff sees till later. But after watching him grow and learn, the audience begins to see what Graff always saw within Ender. I ended up really feeling for him as a character by the end, so far as to feel bad for him and the life he was forced to live and the things he was forced to do.

The Pace 

This novel jumps into the story pretty quickly. I absolutely hate it when too much exposition is part of a novel. Thankfully, Ender’s Game spends minimal building before throwing Ender and the audience into Battle School and the plot. I think this is wise especially as this novel is used to hook children into reading. To much exposition makes it hard for picky readers to get into the story. But in a matter of pages, we are immersed in the new world of Ender and Battle School.

Character Development

One of the best parts of this book is the character development. And not just for Ender either. We see his siblings Valentine and Peter evolve, we see Colonel Graff devolve due to exhaustion and stress, and yes we see Ender grow and became the savior of the world. None of the main characters are two-dimensional because the story takes place over years of development we are forced to see them and that makes the story that much better. If we didn’t know the changes that Graff makes or Valentine, their actions would make less sense to the audience.

The Battle Room

Who doesn’t love the Battle Room? I mean really? If you have read this novel, it is probably one of those things you love. It is the setting for so many scenes and aids so much in shaping Ender to the young man who saves the world. It is critical. This is one of those things that I think caused the movie to be delayed for so many years. If you can’t get it right, there is no point in even making the movie.

The Ending

The ending caught me off guard. I knew something was up about halfway through Ender working with Mazer Rackham, but the extent that he was tricked and used, I did not see coming. I also felt that Ender’s reaction to what happened was very realistic. Not many can commit mass genocide and walk away being ok, but then again that’s the reason they picked Ender instead of Peter. Ender secluded himself, mourns, becomes depressed. If he had gotten up and been fine, or even if he was sad but moved on, it would have been less acceptable. We see throughout the novel the kind of person Ender is and will be. We know how he cares deeply for humanity but also feels guilty for necessary steps he was forced to take in order to protect said humanity. This even more prevalent after finding the hive queen, despite being war hero, Ender is compassionate and strong and searches to find somewhere she can live again.

Valentine and Peter

These two are so important to the story. Like Ender they are smart and they are creative. But both his sister and brother are very different then he is. To truly understand why Ender was chosen, the audience needs to see why Valentine and Peter were not. Valentine is too compassionate while Peter is too fierce and sadistic. Knowing why they were not chosen is said almost immediately but the audience doesn’t fully grasp the reason till we see what Ender is put through. It then becomes more apparent why Ender is the savior, being a perfect mix between his two siblings.

I know creating a film adaptation of a novel means taking things out and adding things in to make it flow better, or work better, but I hope most of these things stay relatively intact. And please, make the Battle Room awesome!

The film adaptation will be released on November 1, 2013, by Summit Entertainment. It stars Asa Butterfield as Ender as well as Harrison Ford, Ben Kingsley, Aramis Knight, Hailee Steinfeld, Jimmy Pinchak, and Abigail Breslin.

Note: Review copies of the audiobook and paperwork were provided by Macmillan in partner with this review.

More Actors Come to Play in Ender’s Game

The film which may already be in production, continues to grow in numbers as they add another familiar actor to the ranks. Nonso Anozie joins the jeesh, playing the part of Sergeant Dap in the film adaptation of Orson Scott Card’s novel Ender’s Game, Deadline reports.

One of the best novels of its’ time, it is a science-fiction masterpiece in which children are pitted against one another to save the human race from extinction. The cast for Gavin Hood’s adaptation of this book has been coming together quickly and the movie has built a lot of momentum; if not close fanatic attention.

Anozie was last seen in Joe Carnahan’s survival thriller The Grey, but the British actor could be seen everywhere from Guy Ritchie’s RocknRolla to Mike Leigh’s Happy-Go-Lucky to last year’s Conan the Barbarian. Anozie will also show up in the second season of “Game of Thrones”, where he plays Xaro Xhoan Daxos.

In addition, Anonzie will also be joined by Stevie Ray Dallimore; Joyful Noise; and Andrea Powell; “One Tree Hil”l; as the parents of Andrew “Ender” Wiggin, John and Theresa Wiggin. The original story of Ender’s Game doesn’t flat out say this, but because the three Wiggin children are extraordinarily gifted it’s assumed that the parents of the children are just as intelligent. It’s later addressed in a prequel short stories by Orson Scott Card titled “The Polish Boy” and “Teacher’s Pest.” Ender who is going to be played by Hugo star Asa Butterfield, is the greater sum of his parents constituent parts, excelling in intelligence, leadership and empathy.

An excerpt from my previous article, Viola Davis Joins the Jeesh in Ender’s Game:

“Andrew Wiggin is the third child of a family in a world that only allows two per household. Specially licensed to exist, Ender; a nickname which he has grown to think of himself as; is sent to Battle School.”

“This school is for the brightest geniuses on Earth who have the character traits to lead and to win. ”

I think Lionsgate caught on to a formula that works. They bought Summit Entertainment which is producing this film. Combined they have produced movies such as the Twilight Saga films and the upcoming film The Hunger Games. Could it be that Lionsgate is focusing on optioning titles that already have a large following? Well I hope they’re prepared for backlash if the movie adaptation remains true to the novel and shows Ender killing other children. We’re not even talking teenagers here. For decency, I’m sure they won’t be that stupid. However I hope they shoot a scene of Ender giving a Stilson the bully a good thrashing. Just so I can hear him say to the bully’s remaining friends:

“You might be having some idea of ganging up on me. You could probably beat me up pretty bad. But just remember what I do to people who try to hurt me. From then on you’d be wondering when I’d get you, and how bad it would be.” – Excerpt from Ender’s Game

The large ensemble cast for the Summit Entertainment production, currently includes Harrison Ford, Sir Ben Kingsley, Viola Davis, Hailee Steinfeld and Abigail Breslin. The film is expected to be released March 15, 2013. Filming begins in New Orleans this month.