Friday, April 15, 2011

ABOUT TIME I SAY ..........

Watchmen writer adapting Anne McCaffrey’s Dragonriders of Pern to film

Anne McCaffrey's Dragonriders of Pern book series has garnered generations of fans. Now it's about to be translated for the screen by the screenwriter for Watchmen and X2, David Hayter.

David Hayter, screenwriter of the first two X-Men films, has been tapped by a consortium of production companies headed by Steven Hoban's Copperheart Entertainment to bring "The Dragonriders of Pern," the long running classic science fiction/fantasy franchise to the big screen. Hayter will adapt the first novel in series: "Dragonflight" in which an army of elite warriors ride a telepathically commanded fleet of firebreathing dragons in order to defend the planet of Pern from an insidious menace.

The "Dragonriders of Pern" has long been a favorite of science fiction and fantasy readers since "Dragonflight" was published in 1968. Over the years author Anne McCaffrey has won almost every award imaginable and was the first to crack the New York Times Best Seller List with a science fiction novel: "The White Dragon," also a 'Pern' book, in 1978. LIterary success has not meant a smooth transition to tv or movie screens, with only aborted efforts up until now.

This will no doubt be a hugely expensive movie, since in McCaffrey's world the dragons are different colors, shapes and sizes. Plus they speak through their minds and depend on the humans just as much as the humans depend on them. In the first few books, the dragons are tasked with saving the world of Pern from an airborne attacker in spore form called the Thread. But the McCaffrey books are set after dragon-riding has fallen out of favor.

Is this the first of many more lavish book adaptations to come ? Andrew Stanton's John Carter of Mars will be out in 2012, Game of Thrones premieres this month, and now dragons? Could Hollywood be hitting a fantasy boom soon ?

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