YA sci-fi and supernatural adaptations are all the rage right now and Universal is not missing a beat. the company recently picked up the film rights to the novel, “Arclight” written by Josin L. McQuein. Currently, Imagine Entertainment’s Brian Grazer will produce while Matthew Sand, best known for writing the 2009 Wachowski-produced action movie Ninja Assassin, will pen the screenplay.
“Arclight” is a sci-fi tale set in a post-apocalyptic future. Naturally, humanity has hunkered down in an outpost that is surrounded by a wall of light (aptly named Arclight). What lies out in the darkness? Creatures only known as the Fade. Into this enclave enters a lone teenage girl with no memory of who she is and how she survived in what is called the Dark but one who holds the key to its survival.
The YA novel has not yet been released but is set to hit shelves on April 23, 2013. Optioning not yet released novels seems to be the next big step for studios has they fight for the next “Twilight” or “The Hunger Games” franchise.
“Arclight” seems to have a lot of support other than being optioned so early on. The publisher, Greenwillow Books, initially made a large investment in the novel by paying McQuein $500,000 in 2011 in a two-book deal.
Pouya Shahbazian of New Leaf Literary & Media will produce with Grazer. Imagine’s Erica Huggins and Sarah Bowen will exec produce. Universal’s vp of production Maradith Frenkel and creative executive Chloe Yellin will oversee the project.
There is no word on when the project will begin production or a projected release date for the finished film.
The big screen adaptation of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower continues to fall on troubled waters as another studio turns down the project. Universal Pictures dropped the project that would have been a multi-film commitment earlier this year and now Warner Bros has reportedly turned down a proposal to take over the ambitious project.
The adaptation was being helmed by Ron Howard and Imagine Entertainment according to Variety.
While Warner Bros, is the latest in a list of studios turning down the project, the film may not necessarily be dead. In a world where most of our biggest hitting franchises are adaptation of fantasy and science fiction novels, King’s Dark Tower franchise would seemingly fit right in.
Howard initially planned to make a triology based on the novel series with an accompanying television series to fill in the gaps between each film installment. Akiva Goldsman is on board to provide the screenplay and has reportedly delivered his latest draft for the first film
It was also originally reported that Javier Bardem would be expected to portray gunslinger Roland Deshain, a character who travels across a desolate and vaguely post-apocalyptic landscape in his quest for a black tower. Russell Crowe later showed interest to take the lead role if the project got a greenlight from Warner. There is no word on whether Crowe will remain attached to the project since the studio passed on the project.
One of the fathers of dystopian novels is preparing for a new film adaptation. George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four has been green-lit for a new big screen reboot. Imagine Entertainment is planning to bring back the famous science fiction dystopian tale.
The novel was written in 1948 by Orwell and tells a tale of the world in the future, now known as Oceania where big brother has taken over every aspect of the world. Individuality and privacy are forbidden and citizens can not escape the overwhelming government of Big Brother. The story follows the events of Winston Smith as he realizes there is more to the world than he initially thinks, and quickly ensues in a passionate love affair with a woman named Julia. But Big Brother doesn’t take this rebellion lightly and he is forced into a world he never thought he would see.
Imagine Entertainment has also teamed up with artist Shepard Fairey, who is most known for his iconic “Hope” poster for President Barack Obama. Fairey may also serve as producer when bringing the novel back to film.
Many might remember that the novel was previously adapted for the big screen in its titular year of 1984. It starred John Hurt as the lead character, Winston Smith. Nineteen Eighty-Four has also had several made for television movies as well.
Fans may remember that Imagine Entertainment is also working on bringing Stephen King’s “Dark Tower” series to the silver screen.
There is no word yet on who will star in the adaptation, or when the projected release date is expected.
I think there is a good chance the film will look amazing, but I have a feeling Hollywood will change the book that I grew up loving when translating it to the big screen.