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It's (ENDER'S) GAME Over For Petersen!!

Merrick here...
io9 reports that Wolfgang Petersen...who has been attached to the endlessly-in-development film adaptation of the Orson Scott Card book ENDER'S no longer on the project.
Director Wolfgang Petersen, previously attached to the project, has moved on, producers tell io9. Chartoff Productions is busy meeting with a slew of potential directors for the Ender's movie,
...says THIS ARTICLE at io9. Given the nature of the development process, Petersen's departure doesn't necessarily mean the project will suddenly catapult forward. Depending on who they find to replace Petersen, GAME may have to be re-worked from square one (presumably The Powers That Be will strive to avoid this potentiality when evaluating new directors).

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  • April 23, 2008, 8:16 a.m. CST

    take all the time you need

    by freydis

    just don't screw it up

  • April 23, 2008, 8:19 a.m. CST


    by ingloriousjedi

  • April 23, 2008, 8:21 a.m. CST

    This looks like a job for Brett Ratner!

    by tonagan

    Just because he upsets people so.

  • April 23, 2008, 8:21 a.m. CST

    I'd like to see Wolfgang do a remake of The Neverending Story

    by ingloriousjedi

    Keeping the same music, and bringing the full story to screen. Not just the first half which was the original. And in 3D.

  • April 23, 2008, 8:22 a.m. CST

    No big loss

    by Shepard Wong

    He hasn't made a film I gave a damn about since Das Boot.

  • April 23, 2008, 8:25 a.m. CST

    Lets hope for some movement

    by DJJester

    Oi, I've been watching this project for 6 or 7 years now??

  • April 23, 2008, 8:26 a.m. CST

    Uwe Boll gotta eat!

    by KnightShift

    It's a story about a game. C'mon, work with me here...

  • April 23, 2008, 8:27 a.m. CST

    No Great Loss

    by BeyondStatic

    That's too bad. But maybe a good thing. This is a fabulous book. Could make a cool movie, but completely isn't necessary. Save your money studio people. Let it slide.

  • April 23, 2008, 8:31 a.m. CST

    I nominate Uwe Boll

    by Barmat

    He is the greatest living directer.

  • April 23, 2008, 8:32 a.m. CST

    Your fast Knightshift!!!

    by Barmat

  • April 23, 2008, 8:40 a.m. CST

    Ender needs top quality. Cuaron? Nolan?

    by pipergates

    This gem in the hands of a shitty director...i tremble

  • April 23, 2008, 8:44 a.m. CST

    Coming next - McG's "The Magic Mountain"!

    by Stalin vs Predator

    And W. S. Anderson is already planning how to adapt "Ulysses". It'll be the next big trend - great books adapted by incompetent cretins. I can't wait for Stephen Sommer's "Quo Vadis" and Pitof's "The Gulag Archipelago". Maybe they'll be enslaved by space monsters in his version?

  • April 23, 2008, 8:46 a.m. CST


    by Series7

    involentary Horner trumpet DA NA NA NA!!!!!! Oh my brains

  • April 23, 2008, 9:07 a.m. CST

    Alfonso Cuarón

    by TroutMaskReplicant

    Hehe. I was going to mention him myself. The thing is this project is owned by Warner Brothers I think. Warner has shown a recent trend of putting development hell projects into production if a "savior" comes along. Superman Returns and Watchmen for instance. I said it before on this site that the big problem is Orson Scott Card himself. I think he negotiated an incredibly restrictive contract that gives him a lot of power over the script.

  • April 23, 2008, 9:09 a.m. CST

    Actually Troy was pretty great.

    by Herb West

    Ha. I remember that.

  • April 23, 2008, 9:12 a.m. CST

    I've been craving an Ender movie since the 80's, BUT . . .

    by Sammy Jankis

    As I've grown, matured, and recently read the book for the 15th+ time, I've come to conclude that although it is an absolutely fabulous story it just will not make a good film. Too much of the novel focuses on internal, unspoken struggles on Ender's part. And those are the truly satisfying elements of the story. Would the battle room be awesome to see on the big screen? Sure, but how many battles can they fit into a feature film without it being repetitious? I just can't see a screenwriter being capable of creating an engaging script without stepping away from the core story and struggles. On top of which, I've read that Card is trying to shoehorn the Ender's Shadow story into the script as well. I just don't see how that could do justice to either storyline. Seriously, read the book again and try to imagine a cohesive single film built around it. It would be almost impossible to do the story justice. In my mind I always saw this story being told in three parts, with the films being released two to three years apart. That would allow the director to use the same actor for Ender, giving him time to grow between each series. I could also see this being done as an animated series, something that would allow for both exposition in the storytelling as well as providing enough time to truly explore the depth and content of the story.

  • April 23, 2008, 9:18 a.m. CST

    Not in our lifetimes...

    by Major Hockshtetter

    There are certain novels that are absolutely unfilmable (Gravity's Rainbow, Infinite Jest, har har) and this may be one of them. The "twist" of the story is that Ender's team think they are playing a game when in fact they are eradicating a species. (er, apologies for that spoiler, by the way...) I simply don't see any feasable way of bringing that to the screen in a dramatic fashion that would work, visually. The training leading up to that big Act 3 revelation could be done but still... the point of the book hinges on this one big mindfuck. Card was right-on to be hawkish about this project but good luck in turning this novel of abstract sociology into a summertime blockbuster, y'know? Of course I used to think Breakfast of Champions was unfilmable (and I was right!) but they tried it anyway so...

  • April 23, 2008, 9:20 a.m. CST

    to Sammy Jankis, you listen...

    by vezner2007

    ...cuz he speaks truth. I have a feeling that an Ender's Game movie will be about as good as the Eragon movie. Don't get me wrong, if they were to somehow be able to create an amazing movie that effectively portrayed the internal struggles that Ender has in the book, it will be an awesome movie. I just doubt that Hollywood can accomplish such a feat.

  • April 23, 2008, 9:21 a.m. CST

    Steven Jackson

    by bigbaldpapa

    If he can translate Ender's Game like he did LOTR I think we would be in for something incredible. This is one book I actually fear being put to film. As brutal as Ender and Bean had to be how are they gonna pull it off and what 5 year old kids could they hire to do so?

  • April 23, 2008, 9:25 a.m. CST

    Jankis is wise!

    by Major Hockshtetter

    On all fronts correct AND well met on the notion of an animated approach. Studio Ghibli, I say!

  • April 23, 2008, 9:25 a.m. CST

    Hopefully Peter Weir

    by Series7

    Will end up getting this. I group Wolfgang Petersen, George Miller and Peter Weir into the same grouping of directors. All came from another country with a hit already (Das Boot, Mad max, Gallipoli) and have been able to stick around in hollywood without makeing just crap. And I think Petterson should hold off for a bit. And Weir has the best track record out of all of them. And his movies get better.

  • April 23, 2008, 9:25 a.m. CST

    Sammy Jankis

    by TroutMaskReplicant

    I very much agree. I read the book with my screenwriter glasses on when I heard that the project was having screenplay trouble. I decided that the best way to write the script would be the take the overall arc of the story but not adhere too closely to what Card wrote himself, while at the same trying to channel the same feelings and ideas he did. Which would be, well, quite difficult. The way I see this film, tonally and structurally speaking, is very much like The Shawshank Redemption or The Sixth Sense. A film about an external character who isn't seen as a classical protagonist at all, but turns out to be an exceptional character. And the twist. I love how no-one mentioned Shyamalan, hehe.

  • April 23, 2008, 9:34 a.m. CST

    Oh and Major Hockshtetter

    by TroutMaskReplicant

    Hit the nail on the head with the virtual reality. There just isn't drama unless you know people could die. And you know...So you'd essentially end up with a film about children playing games. How good would you have to be to make that work as a film? I might soften the twist (sacrilege!) and make it more about the mystery of HOW he won the war, as seen from the point of view of years later.

  • April 23, 2008, 9:56 a.m. CST

    I've wanted GAME for 6 years now!

    by Darth Dean

    I want it I want it I want it.

  • April 23, 2008, 9:59 a.m. CST


    by Herb West

    Do you remember this one?

  • April 23, 2008, 10:04 a.m. CST

    Fincher would be good

    by kwisatzhaderach

    about time he did another sci-fi.

  • April 23, 2008, 10:09 a.m. CST

    Might be good news since Peterson went nowhere

    by Freakemovie

    He's been attached to it forever and nothing's happened with it. Then again, I have serious doubts about the viability of a movie version of Ender's Game anyway. You'd need to find a heck of a lot of IMPECCABLE child actors.

  • April 23, 2008, 10:15 a.m. CST

    SPIELBERG would be the ideal director

    by odysseus

    Kids, action, sci-fi... it's right up his alley.

  • April 23, 2008, 10:16 a.m. CST

    Oh and it seems Cuarón...

    by TroutMaskReplicant

    Is closely associated with Warner Brothers. All of his rumoured upcoming films are attached to them. I'd imagine he's taken a meeting by now...

  • April 23, 2008, 10:26 a.m. CST

    I vote for Spielberg

    by Sithdan

    This has Spielberg written all over it.

  • April 23, 2008, 10:46 a.m. CST

    Get M. Night to direct

    by Ye Not Guilty

    The novel has a twist ending, no? M. Night loves those twist endings.

  • April 23, 2008, 10:47 a.m. CST

    Orson Scott Card at NYCC

    by Rich G

    Orson Scott Card had his own panel at NYCC on Saturday, and he talked about the Ender's Game movie. He said that he and Petersen split because Petersen wanted to make a movie that was called Ender's Game but had no relation to the book that Card had written. He also said that he is currently talking with a director who "gets it" and has ambitions of making a movie that could contend for Best Picture, not just be another summer sci-fi blockbuster. On a side note, he called this director "she," so feel free to speculate who that might be. (Oscar ambitions, good with kids... Jodie Foster, perhaps?) Furthermore, he said he had finished the fifth draft of the screenplay and offhandedly referred to it as the "Battle School" story, so expect a good dose of Bean and the other kids, not just Ender. As for casting, he said that if the story is about a worldwide search for Battle School candidates and you don't have 80% of them from southeast Asia, the Indian subcontinent, and Africa, then you're not doing the story right, despite Hollywood's white-centric preferences. And as for Ender himself, he said he was so optimistic about the movie's development, the kid who will play Ender (not cast yet, of course) is probably in first grade now and will be in fourth grade by the time they get filming.

  • April 23, 2008, 11:03 a.m. CST


    by Samus Aran

    I agree with you wholeheartedly. Wolfgang Peterson, George Miller & Peter Weir are three of my favorite directors ever, and Peter Weir stands as my favorite among those. Actually I was truly hoping that Peter Weir would helm The Hobbit. I still cross my fingers with hope- I want to get back to that old rumor that he was going to. I like Guillermo Del Toro pretty well, but I just think that Peter Weir would deliver a far more convincing film. I have no clue whatsoever why so many people are hoping for Sam Raimi to direct The Hobbit- overated he is. Do they seriously want The Hobbit to feel like Army of Darkness? Please God NO!!! Peter Weir for The Hobbit please, and if not, Ender's Game would be cool too.

  • April 23, 2008, 11:13 a.m. CST

    Yes, Spielberg or Cauron would be perfect

    by MattmanReturns

    But they'll probably get Ratner or McG.

  • April 23, 2008, 11:16 a.m. CST


    by Herb West

    I'm not sure who wrote it, but it's the funniest thing I've seen for awhile. I think every AICN Talkbacker should see it at least once.

  • April 23, 2008, 11:24 a.m. CST

    This movie would suck.

    by Greenleaf1

    I love the book (and only the one, I don't like the ones following Ender's Game), but I absolutely hate child actors. They can't act (with few exceptions) and just plain annoy me (especially if Dakota Fanning plays Petra). I just don't see this movie being any good. Just read the book.

  • April 23, 2008, 11:28 a.m. CST

    Actually, Orson Scott Card addressed that problem

    by CrichtonAstronut

    when he was discussing the movie at the end of the audio CD version of Ender's Game. He said it was his biggest struggle, and he hated the idea of voice over narration, but when a friend of his read Ender's Shadow and suggested combining the books, the script came together. Ends's Shadow explores the life of the character Bean through battle school. I think the idea is for Bean to see insights into Ender's character and bring into dialogue, things that would otherwise stay in Ender's head. If you follow the Bea storyline from ender's Shadow, through the rise of Peter Wiggin as Hedgemon, they are really fascinating reads, I like them better in someways becauase Bean is such a delightfully cynical charactr. I also think Speaker of the Dead would make a great movie. Alien world. Great cast of characters, more dialogue heavy. And Ender would have Jane to talk to.

  • April 23, 2008, 11:32 a.m. CST

    Actually, I think Bean's saga is more timely

    by CrichtonAstronut

    to current gobal politics and raises some very interesting nd topical questions.

  • April 23, 2008, 11:41 a.m. CST

    Fanning as Petra, God no. Talk about wrong

    by CrichtonAstronut

    for the part. I could maybe see the older sister in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. She was supposed to be older than Ender anyway. Gotta fuigure that kid from the Family of Blood two parter would have to play either Ender or Bean. As muh as it might screw with continuity, you almost have to go with an all Brit cast. I don't know any actors young enough outside of Britain who could play this kind of material.

  • April 23, 2008, 11:47 a.m. CST

    You have betrayed me for the last time Petersen!

    by rbatty024

    There's a director who is well past his prime. After some of the crap he's pulled in recent years I don't think I'll ever walk into one of his movies again. It was all downhill after Das Boot.

  • April 23, 2008, 11:56 a.m. CST

    CrichtonAstronut - re Sangster

    by Scorpio

    You're thinking of Thomas Sangster who played Tim in "Human Nature" and "The Family of Blood" in Doctor Who. He **would** have made a great Ender, but he's already had another growth spurt since then. He turns 18 next month, so by the time they get their crap together on this movie, I'm sure he'll be too old. Besides, he'll be busy with Spielberg's Tintin! (motion capture).

  • April 23, 2008, 12:22 p.m. CST

    That's too bad, still gotta go Brit on this movie

    by CrichtonAstronut

    his talent when he was young, is a case in point.

  • April 23, 2008, 12:32 p.m. CST


    by Frye777

    Now find a better director.. Ridley Scott perhaps?

  • April 23, 2008, 12:39 p.m. CST

    What The Studio Wants...

    by KosherWookie

    Is somebody who can step in and take over the project with a minimum of change/turbulence? Ahhhh, so you mean a hired-gun hack with no vision? Like Brett Ratner. Don't kid yourselves, it'll happen.

  • April 23, 2008, 12:42 p.m. CST

    enders game is like watchmen

    by bacci40

    it really should never be made

  • April 23, 2008, 12:43 p.m. CST

    Ender's Shadow addition...

    by TroutMaskReplicant

    Could be a way into the character, could just be bad screenwriting. Wasn't there enough characters seeing into Ender's mind as it was? It will remain to be seen. "She"? Kimberly Peirce maybe? She has been hovering around sci-fi lately. But I suppose Mira Nair might appeal to Card's multi-ethnic concerns...

  • April 23, 2008, 12:47 p.m. CST

    What about Joss Whedon?

    by delyart

    I know Orson loved Serenity.

  • April 23, 2008, 12:55 p.m. CST

    IF it's to be done...

    by TheBigChill

    I've never read material that is more Spielberg than Ender's Game. Only person who consistently gets good performances out of children when dealing with FX. While I think that guys like Alfonso Cuaron, Christopher Nolan, Terry Gilliam, and Ridley Scott would be outstanding choices, I don't see them lining up to work with this book. My guess is that we get someone very second rate. Hell, I'd like to see someone like David Fincher get a chance to direct a fairly violent version of this film.

  • April 23, 2008, 1:01 p.m. CST

    gotta side with the haters here...

    by MurderMostFowl

    I love Enders game and have read every book in the series. That story by itself is unfilmable. You absolutely will *have* to change their ages, unless you WANT to have "Prince Wiggim and the Chronicles of the Ansible" ( or Star Wars Episode 1 for that matter ) . It's just not believable, and as I read the original story, I couldn't help but bump their ages up about 6-10 years in my mind. ( remember he was SIX YEARS OLD when he arrived to battle school ). Not only do I think this was a mistake on the part of Card ( 6 year olds can't fathom the consequences of what he did. That just shows me Card did this as a gimmick ), it's also just a plain mistake for the film. Peter Jackson didn't use real little people for the same reason. The audience won't believe it. Also, it's going to be really tough to evoke sympathy for the buggers, since we've shrugged off worse in movieland. I'm not saying that Can't be done, damn it would be hard. If you're going to do Ender's game you really have to at least to Speaker and Xenocide too, or at least plan them in somehow, to fully appreciate their universe. Enders Shadow could be worked in as a subplot. But really even the Pequeninos story line reads like a twlight zone episode.. not blockbuster movie. Get preteen actors if you have to, but you have to get people who can all genuinely show subtle and careful emotions. So much of the story rides on your ability to believe Enders true sorrow and dispair when it comes. To feel the weight of the world come down on him, the conflict of being the savior, to the human race, but knowing he was an instrument of evil. Just no way...

  • April 23, 2008, 1:06 p.m. CST

    ideas here

    by Richard Richard Mayhew

    So far as I am concerned, Wolfgang Peterson was always a bad choice for the project. Joss Whedon was a good idea, but Whedon quite feel right for me. After what I saw in SUNSHINE, I'd kind of like to see Danny Boyle do it, with Alex Garland writing a screenplay. Cuaron is an okay idea too. Or how about Arronofsky?

  • April 23, 2008, 1:32 p.m. CST

    Zoidberg, you're right . . .

    by Richard Richard Mayhew

    Sunshine wasn't a great movie. It was fun, but not fantastic, and yes, the science was pretty weak in it, but I would argue he wouldn't have to know his science so well to direct Ender. Ender wasn't really a Hard SF story anyway. Its focus was socio/pyschological and I think it would be more important to find a director that can balance the boarding school aspect of the story with the actual battle room sequences. I love Spielberg too, but I just don't see him getting the Battle Room stuff right.

  • April 23, 2008, 1:38 p.m. CST


    by The Llama

    Could it be Lexi Alexander? She's just breaking into the scene and would (theoretically) be easier and cheaper to work with. I watched GSH last night, and while it had some flaws, it was significantly better than I expected, and certainly better than its critics would have had me believe.

  • April 23, 2008, 3:03 p.m. CST

    The "she" is probably...

    by Ravetin

    ...Karyn Kusama or somebody like that. No way it's a name anyone's really familiar with.

  • April 23, 2008, 3:11 p.m. CST

    Also, why isn't this TB moving faster?

    by Ravetin

    I haven't actually read EG, but...I thought it was rather popular? Certainly popular enough to get more posts than a Van-Damme TB.

  • April 23, 2008, 3:32 p.m. CST

    Chris Columbus

    by bornofdust

    I think a choice like that would be sufficient enough to drive Orson into jumping off a building. I'm sure I would, anyway.

  • April 23, 2008, 3:44 p.m. CST

    Enders Game is filmable..the sequels not so much

    by Wed Vid Guy

    Loved Ender's Game and the Lusitania trilogy that followed. I agree that to make Ender's work, you need to roll in Ender's shadow to round things out. Personally, I hope that it retains its hard edge and isn't just Harry Potter in Space. That would kill what made the novel so great. I think if sequels were made, they'd have to follow the Shadow series as those are in some ways more direct sequels to Ender's Game than the Lusitania trilogy that takes us 3000 years in the future. Also the LT is way way more cerebral and might not translate over too well.

  • April 23, 2008, 3:51 p.m. CST

    Then it's settled, bornofdust - Chris Columbus it will be

    by gruntybear

    If that was all it took to get that homophobic douchebag Card to off himself, I'd say bring Columbus on "immediatement." Fuck Card and his batshit insane religion based prejudices.

  • April 23, 2008, 4:04 p.m. CST


    by Quin the Eskimo

    Do you want a hug?

  • April 23, 2008, 4:12 p.m. CST

    Too much angst from Peterson.

    by Uncapie

    Shoot the script closest to Card's book, make the movie, everyone gets paid, have a great film, make a lot of box office and merchandising dough, sell more books. How fucking hard is that to figure out? What a bunch of assholes!

  • April 23, 2008, 4:15 p.m. CST


    by TroutMaskReplicant

    Did you laugh when they sent Dougherty and Harris, two openly gay directors/screenwriters, to work on the script. In fairness Card says he has gay friends. He just thinks they're potentially horrible sinners...He is an ornery sod though, apparently after someone wrote a fanscript, he threatened to sue the ass of anyone who did it again. They should have guessed a long time ago that this film will only get made on his terms. Not something I'd want to get involved in if I were making films.

  • April 23, 2008, 4:18 p.m. CST

    Just because it's ABOUT kids, doesn't mean it's FOR kids

    by samsquanch

    Card has said over and over that he was always somewhat surprised that the book had such a young following, it was intended as a book about children but for adults. Whoever shoots this film had better understand that. THIS IS NOT HARRY POTTER IN SPACE. <p> I'm re-reading Ender's Shadow right now, just as good, and in some ways better, than the original. As I've been reading, it's more and more obvious that this film can only be made with some kind of fancy cgi-animation tech. Something like A Scanner Darkly, but without all the loopy psychedelia. Ender is what, 5 years old when the story starts? Bean looks like a 3 year old. You simply cannot get children that young to play these parts. The answer lies in the new animation technology. It has to.

  • April 23, 2008, 4:28 p.m. CST

    I think James Cameron could do it as well.

    by Gwai Lo

    Obviously, he's James Cameron. He drinks the blood of lesser directors and eats puny mortals like they're sour patch kids. That 'she' throws me for a loop. The only name that crossed my mind that no one else mentioned is Antonia Bird. As much as Ravenous rocks my balls off, it doesn't really scream Ender's Game. She? It's not like Sarah Polley is moving on to epic science fiction films now. The novel would make a great movie, I'm not sure what's so hard to fathom about the translation. Yeah, the big twist doesn't arrive until the end, but it's a MASSIVE twist. And up until the twist you have badass little children beating the everloving shit out of eachother and playing simulated attack strategy war games. Sounds entertaining to me, not too far off from Lord of the Flies or Battle Royale. If people think Speed Racer looks visually appealing then I'm sure they can come up with some immersive war games, maybe even in 3D. As for the 'complexity' of Ender's inner struggle, translating inner prose and monologue into visuals and action is called Writing an Adaptation 101. Books like Atonement, American Psycho or Lolita don't seem readily adaptable when you read them, but the film versions manage to strike a balance. And they don't even have many bare knuckle children fights in them to make them more interesting. If Orson Scott Card's screenplays are still being written by Orson Scott Card the Novel Writer, then maybe they should get someone else to do a final draft of it. They definitely need to cast unknowns for all the child roles. I don't want to see that damn August Rush kid or whoever is the flavor of the month by the time they finally make this. They should get Takashi Miike to direct this. Or Takeshi Kitano. Just some Takeshi. And get Tadanobu Asano somewhere in there as well.

  • April 23, 2008, 4:28 p.m. CST


    by Gwai Lo

    I am so glad Wolfgang Peterson is off this. A looming shadow of awful is suddenly gone.

  • April 23, 2008, 4:35 p.m. CST

    Would be a great film if kept dark

    by Antz

    Need to show Ender beating the other kid to death near the start, and that would certainly set the tone very seriously. Including Ender's Shadow elements would add context vary well, and increase the dramatic tension. Flipping between the story lines of Shadow of the Hegemon and Speaker for the Dead in a sequel could work well. Bean and the re-created Peter could be reunited in about the 4th film in the distant future.

  • April 23, 2008, 5:11 p.m. CST

    Guillermo Del Toro

    by elvenblade

    'Nuff said.

  • April 23, 2008, 5:15 p.m. CST


    by kwisatzhaderach

    Hopefully the 'she' is Kathryn Bigelow. THAT would be cool.

  • April 23, 2008, 5:19 p.m. CST

    Didn't much care for the book after all the hype

    by Drunken Rage

    I'd read about it. Still... it might be a good movie with the right director. My nomination: Bill Friedkin.

  • April 23, 2008, 6:02 p.m. CST

    No gotham, again it's just you.

    by samsquanch

  • April 23, 2008, 6:03 p.m. CST

    the director is important, but the producing is more so

    by BadMrWonka

    you absolutely CANNOT allow this to be made with a bunch of hot 18-year-old abercrombie and fitch models, subtracting all of the subtleties of Ender's childhood life, etc. let it be a complicated, weird, violent, scary, interesting movie, to at least do the book SOME justice.<p>as for a director, I second Fincher...I also think Soderbergh could do a really great version, and you know that at least he would make it watchable no matter what. the man has never made a bad movie, for fuck's sake.

  • April 23, 2008, 6:03 p.m. CST

    Gwai Lo

    by samsquanch

    Sarah Polley. Mmmm.

  • April 23, 2008, 6:05 p.m. CST


    by samsquanch

    That, sir, is my greatest fear. Ender played by some teenager with a hairdo. Fuck. That.

  • April 23, 2008, 6:11 p.m. CST

    Seriously - I'm afraid that IT IS Penny Marshall

    by Bass Bastardson

    I read an article a while back where OSC was talking about Penny Marshal for the director's chair. I figured that was the worst idea I had ever heard, but since I never saw anything more about it, I didn't worry too much. Now that Peterson is out, and OSC is talking about some unnamed director he refers to as "she", I am positively TERRIFIED. Is he really giving his baby to Laverne?

  • April 23, 2008, 6:21 p.m. CST

    Penny Marshal?

    by TroutMaskReplicant

    That would interesting choice. It looks like this could be another Golden Compass...

  • April 23, 2008, 6:27 p.m. CST

    For the love of all that is badass

    by Gwai Lo

    Please do not let Penny Marshall direct this movie. Do me a solid, movie gods.

  • April 23, 2008, 6:28 p.m. CST

    Also, Ender's Game is NOT UNFILMABLE!!!

    by Bass Bastardson

    Seriously, it's fucking Harry Potter in space. I don't say that to denigrate Ender's Game - I know Ender's came first by decades, it is probably my favorite book and I actually think HP owes a HUGE debt to EG. I say it because it is true. The story of the outcast child who is shipped off to boarding school and is supposed to be the "chosen one", struggles to fit in and find his place, dealing with the burden of being only one who can save the day when Voldemort/The Bugger's eventually return. It is practically the same story, just in a different setting and resolved (sort of) in 1 book instead of stretched out over 7. I don't think the Harry Potter films have been all that great, but they do work reasonably well. A skilled director would be able to show all the emotional turmoil Ender goes through, and make the battle room/simulator sequences exciting in the same way that the Quidditch scene's were in the HP films, except even more so. Anyway, I think someone with a little bit of vision could really knock this movie out of the park, but unfortunately, as I said in my previous post, I am really worried that OSC is in fact talking to Penny Marshall.

  • April 23, 2008, 6:32 p.m. CST

    Actually I think Marshall is old news...

    by TroutMaskReplicant Makes for an amusing/depressing read. Everyone knows the mixed bag of book to film adaptations. But the only person that can be blamed in this 10 year plus fiasco is Card himself. Be that as it may.

  • April 23, 2008, 6:37 p.m. CST


    by LaserPants

    Thats it. Just okay. It could make a decent movie though, especially one aimed at a younger crowd.

  • April 23, 2008, 6:40 p.m. CST

    Oh, and if I got to choose the director...

    by Bass Bastardson

    I would probably choose David Fincher, Alfonso Cauron or (drumroll please)... Brad Bird. Of course, that is just with my realist hat on - I really think that the best possible choice would be me. :D

  • April 23, 2008, 6:47 p.m. CST

    You're right, Bass...

    by samsquanch

    I loved the scene in the Philosopher's Stone when a 5 year old Harry beat Draco Malfoy to death with his bare hands, pushing his nose bone up into his brain with the top of his head in the showers, so that Draco wouldn't have a chance to murder Harry for humiliating him on the Quidditch pitch. OH WAIT, that never happened.

  • April 23, 2008, 6:47 p.m. CST

    Should not be made

    by Pariah74

    and if it has to be made it should be animated in the CGI/Rotoscopy style of Beowulf with voice overs.

  • April 23, 2008, 6:48 p.m. CST

    Although, I do agree with the Brad Bird choice.

    by samsquanch

  • April 23, 2008, 6:57 p.m. CST

    samsquanch, you prove my point

    by Bass Bastardson

    ok, not really... but sort of. My point was not that Harry Potter was ripped off, beat for beat, moment for moment. It was obviously aimed at a younger crowd and didn't have the harder edge of EG. HOWEVER, the fact that you were instantly able to transpose that scene and plug in the appropriate characters, shows how similar the stories really are.

  • April 23, 2008, 7:09 p.m. CST

    F*@# Ender's Game. Make Greg Bear's Forge of God

    by tritium

    and Anvil of Stars...for the Love of God !!!!!

  • April 23, 2008, 7:33 p.m. CST

    You know what they should make a movie of?

    by Gwai Lo

    Everybody Poops.

  • April 23, 2008, 7:41 p.m. CST

    by samsquanch

  • April 23, 2008, 7:42 p.m. CST

    Bass, rivals at school doesn't make it THAT similar

    by Drath

    Most any movie or story set in school probably has a two rival kids, possibly even related to a sporting even. That just goes with the overall setting. I could draw a comparison with Peter Parker and Flash Thompson in the first Spider-Man. I think samsquanch makes a valid point that you would not have found a scene like Ender's shower fight in a HP story. I hesitate to say HP wasn't dark, particularly in the later books, but it never went that dark so quickly and plainly avoided the hero having to intentionally kill a fellow student. I have no doubt though that "It's Harry Potter meets Starship Troopers" will be said by somebody if and when the movie starts to be screened. It just makes too much commercial sense to compare them. But it's still a shallow comparison at best.

  • April 23, 2008, 7:49 p.m. CST


    by samsquanch

    What point? That there are similarities? Have you read Ender's Game? Do you think that the X-Men and the Lord of the Flies are basically the same story? How about Oliver Twist and 'Unaccompanied Minors'? What about Romeo and Juliet and 'The Hills'? Fuck, man, there's more to these stories than a 25 word description. Just because there are a couple of similar points (kids, school, enemy) does not make them 'practically the same story." For one thing, Harry Potter was a story intended for children to read, whereas the author of Ender's Game, Orson Scott Card, has said his book was intended for an adult audience. That, and the fact that if you've READ THE BOOK, you know it's a little more subtle, and dealing with slightly more sophisticated themes than the Potter books. And I fucking love Harry Potter, btw.

  • April 23, 2008, 7:55 p.m. CST

    Bad Science in Sunshine?

    by MattmanReturns

    Sure there were some standard sci-fi stretches, such as artificial gravity and the whole reigniting the sun thing (though, if you listen to Brian Cox's commentary, he actually has a very sound theory for why the sun is dying and how it would be fixed), but the movie also got a LOT right. Listen to Cox's commentary... he mercilessly points out what's wrong, but also what's right (which is quite a bit).

  • April 23, 2008, 8:45 p.m. CST

    I hope they still make the movie

    by kafka07

    and I'm not a big fan of Peterson anymore anyway, even though he did the super awesome Das Boot. He also made the super crappy Perfect Storm and Troy.

  • April 23, 2008, 8:52 p.m. CST

    sam & drath

    by Bass Bastardson

    Yes - that there are similarities - that is exactly my fucking point! I was not trying to say that they are the exact same book. I am saying that they are very similar. And I said right at the top of my post that I wasn't trying to denigrate Ender's Game in any way. I love both Ender AND Harry Potter. What I was trying to say was that Ender is a very film-able book, using Harry Potter as an example of something that is very SIMILAR, which has been very successful on film. (whether I liked the movies or not) I'm also not trying to start a flame war or a ranting, raving argument. Maybe I was a bit hyperbolic when I said "practically the same story" - there are a number of differences between the stories, but the fact is that there are A LOT of similarities. And no I wouldn't compare Romeo an Juliet to The Hills, but I would compare it to West Side Story. Anyway, I hope we can be civil about this discussion, because I really wasn't trying to pick a fight, or upset fans of either series, I was just trying to make a point.

  • April 23, 2008, 9:02 p.m. CST

    Fair enough Bass

    by samsquanch

    Increase the peace! <p> seriously, a grown man arguing about Harry Potter online is not where I saw myself as a kid. <p> cheers.

  • April 23, 2008, 9:53 p.m. CST

    REMEMBER: The enemy's pants are DOWN!

    by human2


  • April 23, 2008, 10:01 p.m. CST

    Robert Zemeckis

    by enderandrew

    Hire him instantly. The problem with Ender's Game is finding several very young kids who can act well, do stunts, etc. And the kids age a few years. How do you handle that? Motion-capped CGI is the only way to do this film. Heck, even adults might be able to voice kid roles with some sound-editting work. Zach Braff voiced a kid in Chicken Little reasonably well, and they didn't even alter his voice. A motion-capped CGI version of Ender's Game can even feature Ender killing Bonzo and such, where as real kid actors probably wouldn't fly. Harry or someone with connections, please suggest this to everyone you know. Make this happen.

  • April 24, 2008, 2:22 a.m. CST

    That gave me a quick nightmare...

    by Losers_Game

    I was breezing through and saw "Zach Braff" - and promptly puked. I know it wasn't intended to be related to EG at all, but it was a very disturbing mental image... Zach Braff voicing Ender... Shit, man, I need a beer.

  • April 24, 2008, 2:52 a.m. CST


    by kwisatzhaderach

    Zemeckis? Jeez, he hasn't made a great film since Back to the Future. I agree with the poster above who said Soderbergh would be good. Bigelow, Fincher or Soderbergh. You just know it will be handed to somebody like the bland hack who does the Narnia films though.

  • April 24, 2008, 7:19 a.m. CST

    Should be a trilogy

    by Sebilrazen

    And I don't mean with the other books. I think Ender's Game should be split into 3 movies. Movie 1: His time on Earth and introduction into battle school, Movie 2: His time with the rabbits and the introduction of the game up to the point he's given the dragons, Movie 3: His time with the dragons and the xenocide of the buggers. I think the other books are unfilmable (and profit grabs by OSC).

  • April 24, 2008, 7:51 a.m. CST

    I don't think this can ever be done right

    by dr sauch

    I'm usually an unflappable optimist, but I just envision this getting fucked. Also, there are like 5 or 6 books, and some may necessitate more than one movie.

  • April 24, 2008, 7:59 a.m. CST


    by dr sauch

    I didn't read your post before I wrote mine. I agree with you, the one book should split into 3 movies. However, Ender's shadow was pretty fucking good, as was Shadow of the Hedgemon. They could maybe make them if Enders Game succeeds.

  • April 24, 2008, 8:13 a.m. CST

    WB is gonna fuck this thing up....

    by Russman

    I can feel it! I can feel it in my bones! As I've been saying for the past 10 years.... make it 4 hour mini series on sci-fi channel. There was good fx with Dune and with Riverworld and Tin Man - no it wasn't like T2 but they did a damn good job. <br><br>Make it an event instead of some stripped down run through. Esp. if card is going to weave in both books to the movie.

  • April 24, 2008, 9:19 a.m. CST

    Node32774 vs Zoidberg

    by Richard Richard Mayhew

    You two are still arguing over SUNSHINE?

  • April 24, 2008, 9:19 a.m. CST

    OSC at NYCC part 2

    by Rich G

    I forgot one thing about Orson Scott Card's panel at New York Comic Con. He said that "Ender's Game will either be done right or after I'm dead," prompting a huge cheer from the crowd. So, don't expect him to let a studio hack or even a studio pro to come in and change things around. If it doesn't match his vision, it won't get made at all.

  • April 24, 2008, 9:32 a.m. CST

    I think there could be something very evocative

    by CrichtonAstronut

    about seeing the final battle in as a computer display only, the way the battle schollers see it and knowing what Ender doesn't, that it's a real battle.

  • April 24, 2008, 9:34 a.m. CST

    Liked how Bean figured it out in the Ender's Shadow

    by CrichtonAstronut


  • April 24, 2008, 9:42 a.m. CST

    Actually, I think the Lusitainia trilogy would be easier

    by CrichtonAstronut

    to film, all the big ideas, both the philisophical and scifi ideas, are brought out in dialogue, the major hurtle for Ender's Game is that the real drama was what was going on in Ender's head. In the Lusitania it's about the relationships between characters, who talk to each other or conspicuously avoid doing so, both of which are very filmable. Plus, you'd get some damned fine special effects, for the interstellar colonies and the Buggers.

  • April 24, 2008, 9:44 a.m. CST

    I'd also love to see Shadow of the Hedgemon and

    by CrichtonAstronut

    the books following Ender's life with Petra and Peter.

  • April 24, 2008, 10:01 a.m. CST

    Sorry meant Bean's life with Petra and Peter.

    by CrichtonAstronut

  • April 24, 2008, 10:14 a.m. CST

    Just got off the phone with Jim Cameron!

    by Motoko Kusanagi

    He said he won't direct either.

  • April 24, 2008, 11:20 a.m. CST

    FUCK! This movie will never get made

    by Puddleglum

    goddamnit motherfuckers!

  • April 24, 2008, 12:01 p.m. CST

    It's All About The (Ender's) Game!

    by Reel American Hero

    Time to play the game!

  • April 24, 2008, 1:40 p.m. CST


    by dk7pdx

    All for the mini-series ... but use animation or CG ... and not fuckin' mo-cap ... that shit's still retarded ... DO NOT FUCKING SKIMP ON ENDER'S GAME! ... DO IT FUCKING RIGHT! ... Get Tartarovsky ... or some sweet anime director ...

  • April 24, 2008, 1:56 p.m. CST

    Meant Tartakovsky

    by dk7pdx

  • April 24, 2008, 2:55 p.m. CST

    Make it Anime

    by Dokkalvar

    Why does everything have to be live action? Like Transformers - why not an over the top Anime? <P> Either that or court Alfonso Cuarón or Kinji Fukasaku...

  • April 24, 2008, 3:23 p.m. CST

    Ron Howard or Mel Gibson?

    by Ender's Jeesh

    That's who I'd go after. Anyway, I praise Card for not selling out. He has probably passed up a ton of coin holding out like this, but you have to respect his principles. And it can absolutely be filmed, but I'd go with Ender as a supporting character, sort of General Kurtz. Let his story be told by those around him with a few flashbacks to his life before Battle School.

  • April 24, 2008, 4:40 p.m. CST

    Node and Hancock deserve each other

    by Puddleglum


  • April 24, 2008, 8:18 p.m. CST

    Is the movie EVER going to get made??

    by quadrupletree

    WTF? I know, no big loss. But man this movie has been in development for ever!!! That said, there are some amazing directors that could kick all kinds of ass on this project. They've all been mentioned already but, Cameron, Speilberg, Cuaron, Nolan, Danny Boyle? Why can't anyone in Hollywood make this happen?

  • April 24, 2008, 8:28 p.m. CST


    by BrainFart

    practice what ya preach son, cuz every thread ive seen ya in you got yourself a tall frosty glass of haterade.

  • April 24, 2008, 10:35 p.m. CST

    development hell

    by johnnysunshine

    It seems like turning this book into a great movie is a no-brainer. I would think it would translate very well, provided you could find a couple of really good child actors. It saddens me that they just can't get this movie made.

  • April 25, 2008, 12:21 p.m. CST

    to Jankis, inner narrative

    by cubist

    Right on. Seems like inner narrative could be handled through the game--add on to the playground, giant, etc as a reflection of Ender's mental workings...sort of a vr narrator.

  • April 25, 2008, 5:40 p.m. CST


    by enderandrew

    Zemeckis because he can do it in the Beowulf style.