Fanboys screenwriter Ernest Cline sold the movie rights for his novel Ready Player One before the book was published, so it should come as no surprise that the same would be the case for his next planned novel, especially when you factor in the success of RPO since the book hit shelves last year. Warner Bros has the rights to Cline's first novel, and Universal has secured the rights to the second one, which was only just recently announced.
Just a couple of days ago, we learned that Cline's follow-up to Ready Player One would be a novel that caters to video game fans, titled Armada. Beyond that, not much is known about the premise for the 20-page proposal that secured Cline a seven-figure book deal with Random House's Crown Publishing. At the time that news broke about the book deal, word was that film rights were said to be in the works. Today Variety reports that Universal picked up the feature film rights to Armada, describing the novel as featuring "a high-concept hook: the ultimate wish fulfillment to every videogame fan on the planet." Universal is putting the adaptation in the hands of Scott Stuber's Bluegrass Films (Ted, Battleship) and Dan Farah's Farah Films banner.
With so little information about Armada's story shared right now, it's hard to speculate much about the movie. Those of us who loved Cline's previously published geek-friendly 80s-pop-culture-infused sci-fi adventure novel are still waiting for updates on the Ready Player One movie. Given the nature of the story, which involves a scavenger hunt through a virtual-reality-like simulated online universe called the OASIS, adapting the novel to the big screen probably won't be easy, but it could be amazing if they get it right. RPO was somewhat geared toward video game fans as well, though it sounds like Armada may take that a step further. We'll have to wait and see what details emerge about Cline's novel, including when we can expect it to be published.
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