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Neuromancer Movie In Your Future? 239

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the believe-it-when-they-shoot-it dept.
An anonymous reader pointed out a link talking about how Vincenzo Natali, writer/director of Splice, has written a screenplay for Neuromancer. The article says he even ran it by Gibson. No studio is attached to the project, but at least Natali promised "No Keanu."
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Neuromancer Movie In Your Future?

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @12:02PM (#32349556)

    ...from every year that Slashdot has been in existence.

    • by dskzero (960168)
      They *will* eventually make one. I mean, they made one from "Where the Wild Things are", which is one of the most bizarre movies I have ever seen. Neuromancer has a lot more to make a movie than that.
      • Way too late! (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @12:28PM (#32349910)

        The problem is, "Neuromancer" was cutting edge in 1984. If they had made it into a movie within 10 years, they might have had a shot at succeeding, but now cyberpunk is mainstream and all the ideas that were new and different in Neuromancer have become cliché thanks to other films and TV shows introducing it in piecemeal fashion.

        "Durr" has it right farther down the thread - "Neuromancer: The Movie" will look like it's just following in the footsteps of dated crappy cyberpunkish movies.

        • I think the "movie" that plays in my head when I read Gibson's prose is probably better than anything that Hollywood could come up with anyway.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by j00r0m4nc3r (959816)
          "Neuromancer: The Movie" will look like it's just following in the footsteps of dated crappy cyberpunkish movies.

          Ah the insightful words of a true visionary...
          If everybody thought like you did, we wouldn't even have sci-fi to begin with.
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Bugamn (1769722)
        I'll watch it while playing Duke Nuken Forever.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by ehrichweiss (706417) *

        They will make it and I will not watch it.. Hollywood has managed to ruin every old movie and TV show from my childhood and they are NOT going to start with one of my favorite books and take Neuromancer away from me.

        • by dskzero (960168)
          Don't be silly, you'll watch it and hate it just like when you watched Johnny Mnemonic and stood in awe as Dolph Lungren proceeded to religiously destroy your faith in film industry.

          BTW, I want room service.
    • by Reason58 (775044) on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @12:16PM (#32349754)
      I thought you were being silly at first, so I searched "neuromancer movie" and look what I found [slashdot.org]. That is from over a decade ago.
    • by Quiet_Desperation (858215) on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @12:23PM (#32349836)
      Yeah, well, this is the year that Neuromancer will rule the desktop in Soviet Russia! So there! Profit!
  • Gibson! (Score:3, Funny)

    by Itninja (937614) on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @12:08PM (#32349630) Homepage

    The article says he even ran it by Gibson.

    Having a guitar play Henry would be pretty awesome.

  • Do not try and appreciate the acting in the Matrix. That's impossible. Instead... only try to realize the truth: there IS no Keanu Reeves. He's a computer generated graphic.

    • by WhiteDragon (4556)

      Do not try and appreciate the acting in the Matrix. That's impossible. Instead... only try to realize the truth: there IS no Keanu Reeves. He's a computer generated graphic.

      but of course Johnny Mnemonic would be the Gibson film with Keanu in it.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Ephemeriis (315124)

        And Johnny Mnemonic really wasn't all that bad.

        Doesn't match the source material all that well, but that's hardly Keanu's fault.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by poena.dare (306891)

          According to cannon, Johnny was assassinated before Case came along, so Keanu shouldn't be in it anyway. But that leaves us with an unpalatable Dina Meyer as Molly (or Jane as she was known in the movie). I think I'll lie down now.

          • Re:Keanu (Score:5, Funny)

            by Arthur Grumbine (1086397) on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @01:07PM (#32350382) Journal

            According to cannon...

            Personally, I only trust howitzer for original source material.

          • by _Sprocket_ (42527)

            According to cannon, Johnny was assassinated before Case came along, so Keanu shouldn't be in it anyway. But that leaves us with an unpalatable Dina Meyer as Molly (or Jane as she was known in the movie). I think I'll lie down now.

            I remember reading an interview with Gibson some time ago where he talked about the Johnny Mnemonic movie. He noted that he kept Molly out of the screenplay because that character showed up in multiple novels and he didn't want the studio to have any rights to the character. So no problem. Jane is not Molly. On purpose.

        • by RevWaldo (1186281)
          I have a soft spot for Johnny Mnemonic since a) much of it is set in Newark NJ (with location shots!) and b) it co-stars Henry Rollins and Ice Cube.

          .
        • by gad_zuki! (70830)

          >And Johnny Mnemonic really wasn't all that bad.

          I thought it was, and I dont blame the production or the actors. The source material, frankly, is more fantasy than sci-fi. Gibson weaves a good tale, but with a lot of silliness and his stories have as much to do with fashion and hipster attitudes than technology. Generally, people think Neuromancer is unfilmable. Not me. I just think a sincere attempt to make it a film would produce something closer to "Hackers" than "Schindler's List."

          • People also forget that Johnny Mnemonic was a short story that they turned into a film... so they had to take some license with it.

            *shrugs* I liked it. Though I'm a big Rollins.
    • by Bigjeff5 (1143585)

      For what it's worth, I really liked the first one. It was an amazing story, and Reeves' unique dumber-than-brick acting style really worked, lent the role an intense cluelessness that was perfect. Once Neo knows what he's doing though, the dumber-than-brick style of Reeves' just doesn't work. It just means Neo is a dumb fuck. As such, the second was only watchable for the fight scenes, and the third was just plain terrible. Even the fight scenes weren't that good.

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward

        For what it's worth, I really liked the first one. It was an amazing story, and Reeves' unique dumber-than-brick acting style really worked, lent the role an intense cluelessness that was perfect. Once Neo knows what he's doing though, the dumber-than-brick style of Reeves' just doesn't work. It just means Neo is a dumb fuck. As such, the second was only watchable for the fight scenes, and the third was just plain terrible. Even the fight scenes weren't that good.

        [insert the same tired xkcd joke about there only being one Matrix movie here]

        [insert instant +5 Funny here]

      • by Rei (128717)

        The best role I've ever seen Keanu in was "A Walk In The Clouds"; he actually did an okay job. The role was made for him: it's about a guy who does a poor job of acting (in this case, of acting like he's the father of a child that isn't his). His natural lack of acting talent just comes across as the character having a lack of acting talent.

        • Actually, he was pretty good in both The Lake House and Sweet November. Believe it or not, the guy actually *can* act. Why he doesn't try it more often, I don't know.

      • by Grishnakh (216268)

        Remember the allegation that the first movie's script was plagiarized? I think it's probably true. The first movie did have an amazing and innovative story, while the second two movies were crap. It makes perfect sense that the directors stole the script idea for the first one, and then when the movie was a giant hit and they got a contract for sequels, they had to write those themselves (since the author they plagiarized from didn't write anything else for them to steal), and of course what they came up

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Thanshin (1188877)

      Don't be mean. He's a passable actor as long as you keep him in the correct characters.

      I suggest:

      - Robot from space.
      - Tree.
      - Brick.
      - Guy in carbonite block (just spray him black)

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by torgis (840592)

        Don't be mean. He's a passable actor as long as you keep him in the correct characters.

        I suggest:

        - Robot from space.
        - Tree.
        - Brick.
        - Guy in carbonite block (just spray him black)
        - Ted "Theodore" Logan

        There, fixed that for ya.

    • Re:Keanu (Score:5, Insightful)

      by jackchance (947926) on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @01:47PM (#32350816) Homepage

      I know people love to hate Keanu. But who else could have played Neo? The Matrix was amazing, and he played a big part in that and he can make as many november rains as he wants and i'll still love him.

      Also: point break. bill and ted's. my own private idaho.

  • Splice? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Björn (4836) * on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @12:12PM (#32349690)
    I have seen some of Vincenzo Natali's previous movies; Cube (very original), Cypher (cool SF thriller) and Nothing (funny and absurd fantasy). He is definitely an interesting director. But I have never heard of Splice. Is it worth tracking down a DVD of Splice?
    • by elrous0 (869638) *
      It's still not even out in theaters (at least in the U.S.). They've been advertising it pretty heavily here, though.
    • I have seen some of Vincenzo Natali's previous movies; Cube (very original), Cypher (cool SF thriller) and Nothing (funny and absurd fantasy). He is definitely an interesting director. But I have never heard of Splice. Is it worth tracking down a DVD of Splice?

      Splice [imdb.com] is a relatively new movie that I've seen floating around the interwebs lately. It looks very interesting. Haven't been able to get my hands on a copy of it yet though.

      • by Abcd1234 (188840)

        Interesting? More like terrible. "Scientists 'play god' with genetic engineering, create monster. Monster runs amok. Hilarity ensues." Honestly, I haven't seen a premise that bad, not to mention that unoriginal, in years...

    • Splice comes out June 4th. IMDB [imdb.com]
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Scrameustache (459504)

      I have seen some of Vincenzo Natali's previous movies; Cube (very original), Cypher (cool SF thriller) and Nothing (funny and absurd fantasy). He is definitely an interesting director. But I have never heard of Splice. Is it worth tracking down a DVD of Splice?

      1- It's coming out in theaters soon, so I wouldn't try to find the DVD yet.

      2- It seems to be EXACTLY the same movie as "Species". I can only hope they have as much T&A.

      • by Björn (4836) *
        The first Species movie was decent flick, with a terrific Giger monster design. I guess I'll just have to wait and see then.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by jackchance (947926)

        It seems to be EXACTLY the same movie as "Species". I can only hope they have as much T&A.

        I thought the same thing. The splice alien is not hot unfortuantely. i'll take a pass.

  • Oh, I know, they'll pay $200M to the Russians to take the actors and cameramen to the ISS.

    Too bad we didn't finalize and build a follow on to the Shuttle 15 years ago.

                    mark

    • by Sir_Lewk (967686)

      Yeah, just like how they had to film Apollo 13.

      Oh wait, no not at all like that. Do you seriously think that every time someone makes a movie with zero-g scenes they have to blast everyone into space?

    • by Yvanhoe (564877)
      I bet they'll cut some zero-G scenes but not for technical reasons : remember that they first get there to meet some stoned rastas.
    • by jeffmeden (135043)

      What I want to know is, will they be getting Robert Silverberg to write the promotional novel, too? I think the movie poster will look something like this:

      "Vincenzo Natali's adaptaton of William Gibson's novel will be as good or perhaps better than the original novel itself. I am looking forward to watching it soon in a theater and may even bring my kids. Most likely I will purchase popcorn and a large diet soda."
      --Robert Silverberg

  • Unless of course, he plays the voice of the AI, which would be an entertaining twist.

    • I can't really see Keanu as having an airy sing-song voice like Wintermute was suppose to have (IIRC) I think they need one of those old mechanical speech synthesizers they built in the 1800s.

    • Wouldn't that make the AI ... dunno, a bit too inhuman, sterile and emotionless?

  • by elrous0 (869638) * on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @12:18PM (#32349778)
    Good for you, pal. I've been writing Phillip K. Dick screenplay adaptations for years, and that sonofabitch has YET to approve even ONE of them!
  • that Vincenzo Natali is also the writer/director of Cube, an awesome move. Whereas Splice doesn't exactly look like it's going to be winning any awards (according to imdb, Cube won 13 [imdb.com]).
  • by Herkum01 (592704) on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @12:20PM (#32349794)

    at least Natali promised 'No Keanu'.

    EXCELLENT!!! *Air Guitar plays in the background*

  • by kindbud (90044) on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @12:27PM (#32349894) Homepage

    Instead, the role of Case will be played by Ben Affleck. Whoah!

    That's what hating on Keanu gets you.

    • Instead, the role of Case will be played by Ben Affleck.

      Really? I heard it was going to be Will Smith.

      • Now now. Will Smith acts in many bad movies (and a few good ones), but he isn't a bad actor in general. Ben Affleck and Keanu Reeves are a totally different story.
        • Your .sig is brilliant.

          This is wholly off topic, but it had to be said.

        • Will Smith isn't a bad actor?

          So... Which Earth is this? 2? 3? 75? Pick any 4 Will Smith movies and he'll be passable *at best* in 2 of them, and playing a wise-cracking jackass in 3 of them. And if you really want to destroy your opinion of Will Smith, watch Shark Tale.

    • Ben Affleck is a much better actor than Reeves. Of course, so's the guy who told me he needed $5 for gas so he could drive his car back home...
      I seriously think Johnny Mnemonic would have been pretty good if we didn't have to watch Reeves trying to show emotion. That was painful.
  • by AceJohnny (253840) <jlargentaye@@@gmail...com> on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @12:36PM (#32350018) Journal

    The article says he even ran it by Gibson.

    It does not, however, say that Gibson approved it.

    • I want to know when the movie about Second life is going to be made?

      Oh, wait.. Sorry, Snow Crash, not Second Life.

      Kind of creepy how accurate that book was in many ways, for how old it is.

  • Natali's interview (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @12:47PM (#32350172)

    Found this using google search: http://www.cinematical.com/2010/05/25/interview-vincenzo-natali-explains-how-to-crack-neuromancer/

    Cinematical: What do you think is the key to cracking it for the big screen?

    Natali: I think it always comes down to character. I think it's about understanding who Case is and getting his story down. I've read other drafts of the script and they've had good things in them, but they never seem to hold together. And I think part of the problem, and I believe William Gibson would agree with this, but the ending is, shall we say... somewhat ambiguous and not that well defined. In thinking about how I wanted to make the movie version of that book work, I had to start with the end, figure that out first and work backwards from there.

    My take on it really is a story of redemption. Case, as a classic noir hero in a sense, is someone who at first appears to be completely in it for himself. He plumbs the depths of the cybernetic underworld and then comes out and reveals that there is more to him than we first thought. It all starts with him.

    But I also think you can be quite faithful to the book. I think the movie can and should have a kind of literary structure to it, it shouldn't be a traditional film structure. I think we can have moments where we go into the past and digress. I'm sure one of the issues other writers have faced in writing the adaptation is that there's so much detail that you can get lost in it. I think you have to hone it down a little bit but also allow yourself to flashback to the Screaming Fist or tell Molly's story; just have a chapter in the movie that goes into the past. I think audiences are more than sophisticated enough to handle that.

    That actually excites me, I like the idea of having it being a science fiction film but also having more of a highbrow structure to it.

    • by flink (18449)

      My take on it really is a story of redemption. Case, as a classic noir hero in a sense, is someone who at first appears to be completely in it for himself.

      *** spoliers ***

      I don't know that I agree that Case is ever really redeemed. Sure he saves his own ass, but what does he do with his reward? Buys a new liver and cyberspace deck so he can go back to abusing drugs and making money as a criminal. Molly ends up leaving him as well.

      I'd argue that he's materially better off than when the story starts, but sp

  • The last time I check someone else owned the rights to Molly Millions, not Gibson (ie. Johnny Mnemonic's female protagonist an aptly named, "Jane"). Seems like a bad foot to start on.

    • Amen. Neuromancer without Molly isn't worth watching.

    • by _Sprocket_ (42527)

      Really? Who would that be? It wasn't whoever did the Johnny Mnemonic movie - there was no Molly in that.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Zerth (26112)

      The reason JM character was named "Jane" was because they were still shopping Neuromancer and didn't want to block the bigger deal if the buyer wanted an exclusivity contract.

      Not because Gibson didn't have the rights.

  • by netsavior (627338) on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @01:05PM (#32350352)
    The problem with Neuromancer is that a lot of the scenery and the backdrop itself is based on a pre-Tokyo exchange crash economy, in which everyone just assumed Japan would rule the world soon(ish). The whole feel of the story would be lost, I think now that the parts that could, have already come true, and the parts that haven't come true never will.

    Snowcrash has a much better shot, since it pretty much assumed corporations (masquerading around as governments, churches, and media companies) will eventually take over everything. The backdrop still works.

    Stephenson's Metaverse is a candied playground populated by everyone, ruled by the technological elite and the corporations who hire them, a safe place to which we see the very first danger unleashed. Gibson's cyberspace is a wild frontier rife with danger, populated exclusively by the technological elite cowboys, who risk life and sanity every day. In the modern real life, Internet access is pervasive and a wide audience will accept "OMG this thing we all do IS dangerous, people could get a computer virus!!!" but you will find a hard sell on "you know that cool web-surfing thing, well these guys nearly die doing it, and that is why they are badass, and Case, well, he almost dies a lot." huh???
    • Gibson's setting isn't plausible given recent history, but it still has a unique flavor that makes for a good book, and possibly a good movie.
    • I finally finished the Sprawl Trilogy about a month ago and I'm almost through re-reading Neuromancer again as a refresher. After reading these great novels, I'm almost of the opinion that there is way too much information and too much detail to cram into a 2-hour movie. Gibson went through a lot of pains to explain the story background without going into a "flashback" style of writing. The novels are also way to character driven to try to explain their motiviations and personalities in a short time slot
    • by iggymanz (596061)

      no problem really, translate that Japanese influence that permeates Neuromancer into movie with a heavy Chinese / Indian fusion cultural influence on the west. problem solved.

  • by Sir Realist (1391555) on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @01:06PM (#32350376)

    Everything ever published has at least one screenplay based on it.

    Seriously. If there aren't half a dozen screenplays floating around Hollywood based on the grafitti at Central Station, I'll eat my socks. Its not worth fussing over. The fact the the movie rights to something have been bought is equally unworthy of notice; they regularly buy up rights to things that might possibly one day seem like a good idea, or even just buy up the rights to things that they think would compete against something they have in production, just to keep someone else from using it.

    Now when you hear that they've hired some cameramen and actors and are starting production, _then_ you can get excited (or horrified, or whatever your reaction to hearing that one of your favorite tales is about to be Hollywoodized is.)

  • In my Neuromancer movie fantasy, it's anime (even if it's not made in Japan), with Daniel Clowes [fantagraphics.com] in charge of character design.

    .
  • "No Keanu" (Score:4, Funny)

    by ProteusQ (665382) <dontbother@nowhe r e . c om> on Wednesday May 26, 2010 @01:14PM (#32350460) Journal
    Woah!
  • ...still want a Neuromancer movie?
  • Not sure how well some the visuals of the novel will translate to the movie, fear the same kind of visual effects that they use to represent the "virtual" world that plagued movies since Tron and maybe earlier. If i have to choose a sci-fi movie for translating the visuals to movie, probably would pick Hyperion (at least the "virtual" experience is pictured in the same way in the novel, and the Shrike should put any movie monster from Alien to date into shame) and maybe in a second place Ender's Game (child
  • I can appreciate Cube, but this is not the guy to do Neuromancer. I mean, yeah, Neuromancer is a little cheezy too at parts, but it is a seminal work, far, far beyond anything Natali has done as far as foresight and depth writing-wise. Take away the unique aesthetics of Cube and it's just another WTF-is-going-on-style horror movie -- it's strength is not so much the script. Neuromancer deserves better treatment. I hope this attempt fails like all the other film attempts because I'd rather see no film th

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