March 25, 2015

Steven Spielberg Will Direct READY PLAYER ONE

For the last two years I've been lucky enough to attend SXSW and both years I've started off the festival with panels led by author Ernie Cline, the guy who wrote the film Fanboys as well as the excellent novel Ready Player One.  The latter is a fantastic, lightweight sci-fi adventure set in a future world where humanity spends most of their time living in an immersive virtual reality which consists primarily of recreations of Star Wars, Star Trek, Doctor Who, Firefly, Ghostbusters, Buckaroo Banzai, Dungeons and Dragons, Marvel, DC and every other nerd property of the past 30 some-odd years.  It's a story that is both ripe for cinematic adaptation and a potential nightmare of intellectual property litigation.  But Warner Bros is determined to shepherd this thing into theaters and now they've brought on perhaps the ideal director to make it happen.

According to Deadline, Steven Spielberg has signed on direct Ready Player One immediately following his adaptation of Roald Dahl's The BFG.  Now, with a busy director like Spielberg, these things always feel like they're in flux.  The guy builds a future slate six movies deep and often times they end up in the hands of other directors.  (see: Interstellar.)  But I really, really, REALLY hope this actually comes to pass.  Spielberg is an endlessly exciting and appropriate choice, if for no other reason than so many of his iconic films are specifically referenced in the book.  I also suspect he'll be able to lend a little more dramatic heft to the story and keep it from delving into subpar dystopian YA territory.  (See: Divergent.)

This is some exciting stuff though!  I've been waiting for this movie to inevitably disintegrate, but Spielberg's involvement is beyond promising.  The book is an easy read that I cannot recommend highly enough.  And if you're still on the fence, here's a picture of me with Ernie Cline's real life version of Wade Watts' DeLoreon, complete with Oscillation Overthruster, Proton Pack and Flux Capacitor.

It's okay to be jealous.

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