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Morissette wants some Dick, Philip K.! Actress joines RADIO FREE ALBEMUTH!!!

Ahoy, squirts! Quint here. I'm not familiar with this particular Philip K. Dick story, RADIO FREE ALBEMUTH. The story is supposed to be semi-autobiographical and is about a record label executive that has a vision about a woman who is a fabulous singer. Suddenly that woman enters his life, but she's an average lady, not the superstar he saw in his vision. Alanis Morissette will play the vision lady and Jonathan Scarfe is the exec. Also in the cast is Hanna Hall (Zombie's HALLOWEEN) and Shea Whigham (WRISTCUTTERS: A LOVE STORY). Any Dick uber-fans with thoughts on this flick?

Readers Talkback
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  • Oct. 30, 2007, 3:33 a.m. CST

    this could be good - or it could be REALLY BAD!!

    by Maniaq

    which is pretty much the norm with a Dick adaptation...

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 4:19 a.m. CST

    I usually hate it when singers move on to acting...

    by PoweredUpPacman

    ...the only one I liked recently was, surprisingly, Justin Timberlake. Dwight Yoakam's pretty ok too. Morisette? Meh...

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 4:56 a.m. CST

    hmm it could be interesting

    by Edie74

    Morissette is great at non scripted humor and I can imagine her as a dramatic actress too. We will see how it will work... to "PowerUpPacman": Justin Timberlake is horrible and he shouldn't act at all.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 5:03 a.m. CST

    Of all the Dick stories out there why Albemuth?!

    by Chevette13

    This was one of, if not the last novel written by dick before his death. It as a weird mutant twin of another of his novels, VALIS. It is quasi auto-biographical in that PKD is the main character... it takes place in an Alternate history US in which the states become a fascist dictatorship (a real stretch i know)... VALIS, or Vast Active Living Intelligence System, shows up in the story... it is an ancient satilight that has been orbiting the since pretty much the dawn of man occasionally bestowing enlightenment upon human being in the form a pink lazer to the forehead... I don't remember all of the details it has been a few years since i last read it... while it is one of his better stories (in my opinion) it is not one that screams "adapt me into a film!" but then again I thought the same thing about A Scanner Darkly when i first read it and that turned out ok...

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 5:06 a.m. CST

    From the back of "Radio Free Albemoth"

    by Chevette13

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 5:11 a.m. CST

    From the back of "Radio Free Albemoth"

    by Chevette13

    blarg double post, sorry. I went and checked my book shelf and sure enough I still have a copy of it... this from the back of the paperback. "In the late 1960's a paranoid incompetent has schemed his way into the white house and convulsed America in a vicious war against imaginary internal enemies. A struggling science fiction writer named Philip K. Dick is trying to keep from becoming one of that war's casualties. And Dick's best friend, a record executive named Nicholas Brandy, is recieving transmissions from an extraterrestrial entity that may also happen to be God - an entity that apparently wants him to overthrow the President." and yes this is the last Novel Dick wrote before his death.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 5:12 a.m. CST

    Philip K Dick was a goddman genius.

    by Kubla_Khan

    I know that's not news, but it's worth mentioning again. There are a lot of more film-friendly Dick stories out there - but then again, Hollywood fucks them up every single time (with the exception of A Scanner Darkly - that was excellent). I just got done reading Dr Futurity, about a Dr who gets sucked into the far future by Native Americans who want to rewrite the that was cool. There are only a handful of Philip K books I haven't read, and I'm trying to eke them out until I die, because each one I read blows everything else I've read that year out of the water.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 5:13 a.m. CST

    Yeah..rthat title should read goddamn. Goddamn!

    by Kubla_Khan


  • Oct. 30, 2007, 5:14 a.m. CST

    "rthat" should read "that".

    by Kubla_Khan


  • Oct. 30, 2007, 5:52 a.m. CST

    Jesus Christ!! NOOOO!!!!

    by BlackIronPrison

    What a horrible fucking choice. Will someone please get PKD right? A Scanner Darkly came closest, but half the cast took it seriously while the other seemed to have thought it was a fucking cartoon. (Not their fault mind you, the blame falls squarely on Linklater.) But Ananus Moreishit? Pleeeaaaasseee. Might as well dig up Phils corpse and gang-fuck it. INGRATES!!!

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 6:15 a.m. CST

    Biopic, is why

    by RazorMouse

    The choice of material may seem strange as this is not one of Dick's more interesting works, but when you realize that it centers around a fictional rewriting of Dick's weird VALIS epiphany (he really thought he was being contacted by a God-like AI structure from outer space), and with various characters, including one with his name, channelling various of his traits, while working as a fictional narrative, maybe this choice becomes more clear. Public interest in Dick has been slowly building for the better part of 2 decades now, and it's only fitting that the man himself starts entering the frame. Dunno about Morisette, personally I dislike her, but it might work.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 6:41 a.m. CST

    VALIS and Flow My Tears (The Policeman Said)

    by RazorMouse

    Sorry about the second post... I just realized that the same people have also bought the rights to both the books "VALIS" and "Flow My Tears (The Policeman Said)"; interestingly, VALIS is largely the same experience retold (as Albemuth), so might it be that these guys hope to meld the two novels together for this screenplay? Also, "Flow My Tears.." is one of my personal Dick favourites (after UBIK which you just CAN'T CAN'T CANNOT touch if you're not gonna do it right), and actually appears to take place in the same world as Blade Runner. Now that could get some tongues wagging? Maybe you guys should start reading up on Dick? :-p

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 8:08 a.m. CST

    not familiar...

    by donnarumsfeld

    ...why is Quint never familiar with the stuff he writes about? What's up with that?

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 9:30 a.m. CST

    Will it be a metafictional film?

    by phool2056

    Like Tristram Shandy? To me that's what's interesting about this stage of Dick's writing. It's all finally about him. Will the movie be about the filmmakers in the same way? Could be interesting. But I'll shell out for it in any case, if only because I'll shell out for absolutely any movie with the slightest hint of sci fi,

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 9:57 a.m. CST

    Who is the writer / director?

    by Bad LT

    Who wrote the screenplay? Who directs? Produces? Who is going to play the PKB character? The novel features a Nixon/McCarthy like US President and the singer - Linda Fox - is based on Linda Ronstadt, except she has secret anti-fascist messages in her songs.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 10:18 a.m. CST

    John Alan Simon?

    by Bad LT

    OK, a little research reveals the writer/director is John Alan Simon. Next question: Who the fuck is John Alan Simon? Well, he has never wrote or directed a movie before. He produced "Howling II: Your Sister Is A Werewolf", an utter piece of crap that made "The Howling" look like a classic, and he produced the so-so 94 remake of "The Getaway". Doesn't exactly get you all excited does it? I always liked RFA, but PKD essentially disavowed it, and used the plot to form the basis of his later novel "VALIS". The plot of RFA as described is strange, focusing on a dream of a singer who turns out to be a secretary. No metnion of politics or drugs. The book RFA, as I remember it, had a PKD character and the record company character. The real life experience of PKD, the strange visions he had, features in the novel. Most of the plot is very political, dealing with the Nixon like President, his fascist Moral Majority/YAF type group, and how he may be tied to the Communists. The singer Linda Fox is based on Linda Ronstadt, who was the object of PKD sexual fantasies. America becomes more and more fascist, and in the end (BOOK SPOILER COMING, WHO KNOWS WHAT THE MOVIE WILL DO) people are put in concentration camps, and PKD is told new books will appear under his name , but they will have all subversive political content removed. Kinda like what they may be doing with this movie. Who knows, it may turn out to be great, but based on this guys track record and the plot description, I have n confidence this guy has ANY understanding of PKD, his work, his politics, his beliefs.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 11:16 a.m. CST

    to Bad LT

    by Edie74

    I've found an interview with the director John Alan Simon - it seems he's huge fan of PKD.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 12:22 p.m. CST

    To Edie74

    by Bad LT

    I can't get that link to work. Can you verify it and the put a url in [] in front and a /url in [] in back?

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 12:30 p.m. CST

    to Bad LT - the link

    by Edie74

    I hope it will work now [url][/url]

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 12:32 p.m. CST

    the link again

    by Edie74

    the [url] thing doesn't work here this is correct link - in the link shouldn't be any spaces

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 2:08 p.m. CST


    by Bad LT That is the link that works for me. Yeah the guy seems to be a big PKD fan but I don't know. A so-so remake of the Getaway and a terrible Howling sequel ain't much to go on. Nut then again Coppola's first movie was Corman flick called dementia 13, and many other good directors started with B movie stuff, so who knows?

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 3:12 p.m. CST


    by Duke of Hurl

    Where do you get off labeling Alanis Morissette an actress? "You Can't Do That on Television" and a brief appearance in a lame-ass Kevin Smith movie with a shit-monster in it? This will suck as much as Next.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 3:27 p.m. CST

    My favorite Dick novel!!!!

    by DarthCorleone

    Hell, yes! Although...I do wonder why they chose this one. It's not exactly screaming for a screen adaptation.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 4:04 p.m. CST


    by Bad LT

    What I loved about the novel was it had the most politics, the most social satire, and the most pop culture of any PKD novel. And it was very funny in parts, while still dealing with the alternate realities and his VALIS vision. I don't know if any of that is going into the film version.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 4:09 p.m. CST

    more about the movie here:

    by Edie74

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 5:05 p.m. CST


    by Anton_Sirius

    The only director who should be allowed to touch Ubik is Michel Gondrey. Actually, he's probably the only director who should be allowed to touch most of the PDK 'canon'.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 9:03 p.m. CST

    i disagree

    by Chevette13

    i would far rather see Darren Aronofsky or Terry Gilliam take a crack at UBIK than Gondrey. I mean did you see the unholy piece of crap that was The Science of Sleep?

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 9:04 p.m. CST

    12 Monkeys

    by nervous

    was the closest anything has come to the work of Phillip Kindred Dick.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 10:12 p.m. CST

    Why not just make VALIS instead?

    by nimblegod

    Radio Free Albemuth was a good book, but it's one of two autobiographical pieces written about the same experiences in the author's life. VALIS is by far the more interesting and powerful novel. Although, the concept of Aramchek, the ever ambiguous enemy of President Ferris F Fremont, could serve as a wonderful metaphor for fighting an almost unverifiable foe.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 10:46 p.m. CST

    So I'm guessing there's a nuclear explosion

    by chrth

    I figure I got a 75% chance there with that guess.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 10:47 p.m. CST

    PKD movies

    by Bad LT

    I think most of us would agree that Ridley Scott has done the best PKD film in Blade Runner, Scanner Darkly a close second, with good films also represented by Minority Report and Total Recall. Several other movies were HEAVILY influenced by PKD - The Truman Show, The Matrix, Eternal Sunshine, parts of Brazil. I just don't know what to make of this one - the director's history just does not impress, but like I said, many people have done B movies and gone on to do great work. Let us hope that is the case here.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 11:20 p.m. CST

    excellent choice

    by big_log

    nice! just re-read this a few months ago, and had forgotten how great it was the first time around. i've read nearly the entire canon over the last decade, and this is easily one of my favorites. while it lacks some of the trippier elements of VALIS, it dispenses with the long-winded exegesis that just slows VALIS down, but retains all the paranoia that makes dick great. in the right hands (gondry, gilliam) it could be brilliant. in not-so-capable hands it might be another total recall. for those who aren't in the know, just pick it up. it's a great introduction to dick for the uninitiated. i find some of dick's works (mostly the very early stuff) very trite and borderline unreadable, but this grabbed me by the cheeks by page 3 and never let go. excellent read. can't recommend it highly enough.

  • Oct. 30, 2007, 11:51 p.m. CST

    Valis is my favorite of his novels.

    by Punch Man

    Followed by Timothey Archer and Eye in the Sky. I haven't read this one yet. What's going on with the bio-pic with Paul Giamatti?

  • Oct. 31, 2007, midnight CST


    by Zoltan_Abbassid

    This is an ambitious choice, not the more pulpy stuff that filmmakers have usually turned to in PKD's catalog. I don't think it's necessariliy a bad idea to make a film of RFA, but they better treat it as a weird art-house film and not try to go mainstream with it. It's simply too metaphysical and esoteric and weird for the public to digest.

  • Dec. 8, 2007, 10:55 p.m. CST



    Dear Hurl, Dear AlloYall, Alanis is a super Actress, and all you have to do is pay a little more male attention to her slightest moves, rather than fall asleep giving a favor to the man in the seat next to you. Now, don't let me down, with all your dirty thoughts on the Search Engines. Because your written comments are very good and interesting. Im only just now learning to use a computer, for goodness sakes! Kevin.Morissette