Orson Scott Card Optioned By Media Empires

By Josh Tyler 2006-11-14 00:00:00discussion comments
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Orson Scott Card is one of the last century's most significant science fiction authors. His "Ender's Game" deserves to be mentioned in the same breath as work from genre masters like Asimov, Bradbury, Herbert, and Heinlein. This century though… not so much.

Look, I love Cardd but the quality of his work outside of "Ender's Game" is rather questionable. Even his attempts at continuing that series have been pretty hit and miss. The only real literary success he's had has been the novel "Ender's Shadow", which basically rehashes the events of "Ender's Game" from a different perspective. He's damned good at telling that story, even flipped upside down and told by someone else. I'm just not all that sure he's good at anything else.

Joel Silver it seems, disagrees. The Hollywood Reporter says the mega-producer has optioned the rights to an upcoming book and videogame series called "Empire" being put together by Card. It hasn't been released, he has no idea how the world will receive it, but Silver is convinced it'll be that good.

The projects will be the story of a near future where the United States is plunged into civil war following the assassination of the President and the bombing of the White House. A lone operative is framed for the attacks, and Card follows him as he fights to find the truth and clear his name.

What's strange here is that the movie won't be an adaptation of the book or the videogame. Nor is the game an adaptation of the book. Instead, each medium in which "Empire" appears will tell a different part of the story. The first book will be followed by a comic series, which will tell a different piece of the story in a different time period. Then the movie will follow that, with a different story based in the same universe of the book. Then we'll get the game, presumably to cash in on whatever hype the movie can generate. I'm sure they think this is a revolutionary new idea, but to me it just sounds terribly annoying.

The worst thing in all of this is that we're still waiting around for a movie adaptation of Card's only really worthy work, "Ender's Game". The movie's been in development forever, and though Card says he's working on it with Warner Brothers he's been working on it for nearly a decade now. Odds are Empire will beat it to theaters, and videogames, and comic books, and tattoos above the ass cracks of girls gone wild.

"Empire" the book hits shelves on November 28th, so it'll be our first chance to see what Card's up to. Maybe all the "Ender" sequels he's been cranking out lately have somehow worked him back into proper form. Here's hoping. When Card's good, he's really good.
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