Universal Pictures has acquired film rights to the late Robert Jordan's bestselling "The Wheel of Time" novel series in a seven-figure deal. Adaptations of the fantasy tomes will begin with the first book in the cycle, "The Eye of the World." Rick Selvage and Larry Mondragon will produce for Red Eagle Entertainment, which published graphic novel adaptations of Jordan's books. "The Wheel of Time" follows, among its dozens of characters, Rand al’Thor, the latest incarnation of a force for good called "The Dragon." Rand is born to fight an evil character called Shai’tan. "Wheel of Time" books have sold 44 million copies worldwide and spawned computer, trading-card and role-playing games; a soundtrack; comicbooks; and numerous fan sites. The four most recent installments have reached No. 1 on the New York Times bestseller list. The property has been optioned before, notably in 2000, when NBC held the rights to make a miniseries based on "The Eye of the World." Jordan died last year at 58, but the final book in the series is still set for publication in fall 2009, with fellow fantasy scribe Brandon Sanderson writing the novel’s conclusion from Jordan’s notes and tapes.
Aug. 13, 2008, 2:51 a.m. CST
fuck you all
Aug. 13, 2008, 2:53 a.m. CST
never heard of this series but I'll give it a look. And everybody get ready for all the studios snapping up serial books in hopes of copycatting the success of Harry Potter.
Aug. 13, 2008, 2:56 a.m. CST
by Gungan Slayer
Aug. 13, 2008, 3:03 a.m. CST
by Jed Black
Somebody please explain the appeal of The Wheel of Time to me, I read the first 200+ pages of TEOTW and I had to quit, all I got was that Robert Jordan just steals from other better fantasy series and makes good ideas seem crappy.<p> I'm not trying to step on anyones toes here, I'm just honestly baffled by this series' success.
Aug. 13, 2008, 3:15 a.m. CST
I think books 1 to 3 were fine. I think the smallville guy would be a great Rand. I think this could be a solid movie if they just stick to the first three books. I think after book three, the whole thing becomes tedious and long and boring and an example of a writer's ego gone mad. All fantasy books are a rip-off of Tolkien...and this book is not original...but some interesting character development does happen and for that - I may be a little excited.
Aug. 13, 2008, 3:21 a.m. CST
Wheel of Time had a get overall premise; I enjoyed a few of the books and loved the fps pc game they released many years ago. It contrasts with LotR quite a bit I'd have to say... I think the themes and characters are enough to make this a successful venture if played out properly.
Aug. 13, 2008, 3:26 a.m. CST
As I said. Complete and utter geekgasm. I'm going to need a minute... ...okay, thats better.
Aug. 13, 2008, 3:48 a.m. CST
The first three were excellent but derivative (but what modern fantasy isn't?) The series got so freakin' dense after about book 5 that it really was an exercise by Jordan on how to string along a concept and milk it way past it's due date. Never mind that he died before he could wrap it. Say what you want about the Dark Tower but King pulled off a decently satisfactory conclusion in a "brief" 7 volumes. Making a film version of this.....way too much stuff would have to be cut. Unless it was the first couple of books.
Aug. 13, 2008, 3:57 a.m. CST
...the entire series. Other franchises should try playing the Harry Potter game.
Aug. 13, 2008, 3:59 a.m. CST
My god it got boring!
Aug. 13, 2008, 3:59 a.m. CST
by The Grug
It came out quite a few years ago now, I couldn't get past the first few enemies - game was damn near impossible (even on easy)
Aug. 13, 2008, 4:02 a.m. CST
Yeah, I did. Damn, did I just admit that? Well, I'm talking about the WOT FPS one. Was...okay.
Aug. 13, 2008, 4:52 a.m. CST
then the first movie will be used just to describe the scenery in the prologue. But seriously, having read 1-7, these books are very good for avid fans of medieval fantasy. The problem is that they are incredibly long-winded, derivative of Tolkien, and get hard to follow with each new book (since each one introduces about 100 new characters and a dozen new twists). Here's a short summary of the first books. Gandalf ripoff meets main characters and leads them on a quest. Main characters learn they have special talents. Later, they have to find a magical horn for some reason. Finally, the main character of the dozen or so main characters learns he is extra special, and will someday go completely insane and could potentially destroy the world with his new abilities. After that, it's just on huge jumble of characters, locations, and battles that few people want to read through because each book is over 1000 pages too long. I guess the only appeal of it is that only an uber geek with a genius IQ can read the whole thing and understand what the hell is going on.
Aug. 13, 2008, 4:56 a.m. CST
by Tony fucknuts
I tried this series, i really tried. I gave up after book 9 where it became apparant that he was never going to finishthe damn story. How are they going to adapt the many pages of exposition about the clothes characters are wearing, the decor of the room they're in, and the endless series of misunderstandings between female characters that end up with them folding their arms and walking away only to be predictably resolved long after anyone cares? Someone adapt "A Song of Ice and Fire", dammit!
Aug. 13, 2008, 4:57 a.m. CST
With a genius IQ! And my mum said I'd never amount to anything. Thanks, One Crazy Nagger!
Aug. 13, 2008, 5:06 a.m. CST
...Aloy you first of all (correctly) point out how drawn out and tedious the books become, then (contradictorily) say film versions would have to cut too much out. I think film versions that dropped whole rafts of characters and side-plots could be just the thing The Wheel of Time needs, short of an editor who had the balls to tell Jordan to streamline things a bit while he was writing them.<p>My first suggestion, if you can figure out how to restructure the stories to accommodate it, would be to drop the Seanchan and the Whitecloaks. Surely the Dark One's forces should be all the bad guys you'd need, and the story lines featuring these two forces just bored and frustrated me.
Aug. 13, 2008, 5:08 a.m. CST
by Conans Sword
never understood why every 2nd fantasy fag feels the need to shit on the WOT. it kicks ass its just a fucking long ass story, the later books focus more on character development than the action set pieces of the first few which is why loads of people stopped reading, cause all they want is mindless bullshit action scenes over emotional weight. RIP Robert Jordan (who also wrote some cool Conan stories)
Aug. 13, 2008, 5:14 a.m. CST
The reason I stopped reading around book 7/8 was because he was repeating himself way to often. But even worse he was spending huge amounts of time on characters that I really didn't care about. He needed to progress the story and I'm afraid he failed
Aug. 13, 2008, 5:16 a.m. CST
Yep. And Shai'tan. Yeah that's subtle. Although it looks like it should be pronounced Shite Tan.
Aug. 13, 2008, 5:33 a.m. CST
"How are they going to adapt the many pages of exposition about the clothes characters are wearing, the decor of the room they're in" Uh.. by showing them. Would take much less time
Aug. 13, 2008, 5:55 a.m. CST
by Tony fucknuts
Point. He did have a bit of a hard on for describing absolutley everything, which was the main thing that drove me from the books. Means fans will know exactly what they want to see on screen.
Aug. 13, 2008, 6:06 a.m. CST
Who was overblown and took great joy in writing way too damn much about what amounted to nothing. Give me some Hemingway-esque prose over long winded descriptions. He was milking it. I stopped reading after the 6th novel. It became torture and the characters motivations, reactions and plotting became inane. One terse sentence that is written with meaning and clarity is worth five pages of rambling tripe. I will be skipping this....and you can't say I didn't give it a chance. I hung in for six looooooong novels before I abandoned it.
Aug. 13, 2008, 6:13 a.m. CST
But at least the art director will have detailed design notes to work from :)
Aug. 13, 2008, 6:18 a.m. CST
This is exactly what people said about LOTR. It cant' be done, it can't be done. All I know is, whatever they intend, this is sure to be one of the biggest fantasy projects ever tackled. Green light!
Aug. 13, 2008, 6:40 a.m. CST
you're mom's about to come home.
Aug. 13, 2008, 6:47 a.m. CST
by just pillow talk
Talk about way too much fluff and never getting to the point. That's cool for those of you who enjoy the series, but me, I gave it a shot. No thanks.<p>Perhaps movies would be a good thing with this, tighten it up.
Aug. 13, 2008, 6:54 a.m. CST
by Uncle Stan
Aug. 13, 2008, 6:58 a.m. CST
Jordan was brilliant - particularly in his earlier works; the symptoms of that genius never stopped though. For those of you who are fans of the books, I think we can agree that the climaxes of many of his later books made them well worth sometimes slow pacing. While I am an avid - rabid - fan, even I found long descriptive passages tedious, that being said when you can show his books on a screen you can easily cut through 4/5ths of the sheer volume of his later novels. The trick is getting this done RIGHT. Is he like Tolkein? Well, it could be argued that Tolkein was the first popular fantasy novelist - but that would not be entirely accurate; Tolkein took histories, mythology and creativity and made it his own. Go back and read his stuff now after having read newer fantasy and you may very well find the books...well...boring as crap. Jordan took the tropes of fantasy and expanded them and his literary style made each climax, each ending, incredibly powerful. Only a director capable of making us care for the characters in these movies can be successful at all. If, or when, they get deep into the series - you should feel every time the protagonist is tortured and injured. And you should glory in his triumph over his tormentors. Then again, I guess that is the challenge of any novel-come-movie. - Just to throw it out, if you're looking at amazing books to make into movies, try Matthew Stover's Heroes Die. Awesome stuff.
Aug. 13, 2008, 7:06 a.m. CST
Come on HBO, hurry up with that god damned Game of Thrones series.
Aug. 13, 2008, 7:21 a.m. CST
by Stalin vs Predator
Two genres (still) being milked: fantasy & games. Thief combines both, and Shia would be a perfect grim, quiet, Strider-ish loner, right? Get Len Wiseman or that other cretin that did "Hitman", and you're set! At least until their attention is diverted by another earthquake and the need to make it into another movie arises. (By the way, Hephaestos should sell the rights to those earthquakes)
Aug. 13, 2008, 7:37 a.m. CST
Jordan's style made the books work. Not the story.
Aug. 13, 2008, 7:51 a.m. CST
But will the movies (if they get made) be "Golden Compass" or "Lord of the Rings"? The involvement of Red Eagle Entertainment concerns me...the graphic novel adaptation of New Spring totally fell apart halfway through.
Aug. 13, 2008, 8:01 a.m. CST
you'd have to make like 5 movies to get it right and in today's short attention span society it's never gonna happen.
Aug. 13, 2008, 8:06 a.m. CST
Got really really weak. The problem for me wasn't the overly descriptive prose but the fact that the main characters seemed to disappear after the first 3 books. Rand, Matt, and Perrin? Forget their names it's been so long. <p> Anyway, just bring out the Game of Thrones so we can enjoy some great storytelling.
Aug. 13, 2008, 8:13 a.m. CST
I mean this is either going to totally suck and be 1 movie or it's going to kick unholy amounts of ass and be epic.
Aug. 13, 2008, 8:18 a.m. CST
yah, this has happened before. Often. Jordan himself even laughed options off, saying "At this point, when they ask, I just sign the check and wait for the next one to ask." Or something like that. Red Eagle DID do pretty sweet comics for New Spring, if I'm not mistaken. But uh... yah, that doesn't mean much. I don't see a BIG name attached to this, and that DOES scare me a little. Whatever, I'm in the oldschool Watchmen camp: I'll believe there's a WoT movie coming out when I see a trailer.<br><br>@ QUINT: If you really want to give this any kind of a shot at all, go pick up the "young adult" first half of Eye of the World. It's called "From the Two Rivers," and it is the first half of the first book. Then, if you like what you've read, check out the real deal. I'm telling you, they are pretty incredible books.
Aug. 13, 2008, 8:18 a.m. CST
..is a movie based off Irish mythology. Sure some of it is pretty bizarre, but I think the story of Cuchullian could work.
Aug. 13, 2008, 8:19 a.m. CST
Damn enter button. Anyhow, about Irish mythology onscreen. That's why I was so excited to read that the bad guys in Hellboy2 were based on Irish mythological figures.
Aug. 13, 2008, 8:21 a.m. CST
How the fuck are they going to do that?
Aug. 13, 2008, 8:23 a.m. CST
..when people describe any work of high fantasy since Tolkien as a "rip off". He pretty much invented the genre as we know it today, but that doesn't mean anyone else who follows in his footsteps are attempting to rip him off.
Aug. 13, 2008, 8:30 a.m. CST
It was impossible to remember everyone's place between books without going back and reading the whole series every time. Any movie or TV series needs to focus primarily on the big three.
Aug. 13, 2008, 8:36 a.m. CST
by Gatsbys West Egg Omlet
so Quint, the TEMERAIRE stuff is worth getting into?
Aug. 13, 2008, 8:46 a.m. CST
Yes, I know - way for me to take a stand. Despite what all the a-hole haters say, WOT is a fantastic series, with some absolutely great politics and drama. I can't imagine editing this down to a trilogy of movies, let alone a single film. However, without a doubt, it got unwieldly and bloated in the last 4 installments. If some genius with a scalpel can come in and distill the story to it's major plotlines and characters, it just might work. The Forsaken, the Asha'men, the Aes Sedai and the Aiel ? All pontetially fabulous on-screen elements. I, for one, would love to see this one get the same quality treatment as LOTR ... if they do it right, it could work big time.
Aug. 13, 2008, 9:05 a.m. CST
that german guy from the ruins should play Perrin
Aug. 13, 2008, 9:31 a.m. CST
Well, up to what had been written by that point (book 7 or 8). Once I got a little older I realized Jordan's writing was far from perfect: he over-described everything -- I'm talking pages and pages. I'm from the school of revealing character through action, but this guy was just way too in love with his descriptions (including calling women "handsome"; it felt like he said that about ten times each book). But the plot and the characters themselves, sloppy writing aside, were really good for the first four books, and then pretty good for the next two. (After that he slowed down to the point that about two or three major things would happen per 1,000 page book.) I could see an Eye of the World movie turning out spectacularly.
Aug. 13, 2008, 9:39 a.m. CST
And only one of those was any good (Dragon Reborn). The first book is they travel to an inn while on the run. They describe the inn, no one sleeps, and in the middle of the night trollocs attack. They flee to another inn. This happens like six times, and each inn is described the same, and they keep getting attacked in their sleep. Each book approaches 1,000 pages while avoiding any real plot development. The prologue of the first book no doubt basically summarizes the end of the series, and he give away the ending repeatedly. The chapters start with scripture from this holy text which mentions several ages, including ages past which the book is set in. So the Wheel of Time continues, end of story. The worst part is that after being really bored by the first 6000 pages, everyone tells me books 7-9 are really bad, but it starts to pick up again during book 10. No thanks.
Aug. 13, 2008, 9:40 a.m. CST
"If some genius with a scalpel can come in and distill the story to it's major plotlines and characters, it just might work." -- My thoughts exactly -- this is a series that would need heavy cuts and changes in order to work on the screen. Keeping Rand, Mat, and Perrin front and center and narrowing down the rest of the cast should be the first priority. But I'm talking about taking every book after Fires of Heaven and distilling them down to one movie. Think about it. For example, 200 pages of Winter's Heart are dedicated to Perrin walking through the countryside in the winter. Nothing happens. Heck, maybe it'd be an easy adaptation.
Aug. 13, 2008, 9:42 a.m. CST
This series will need 2 1/2 to 3 hour movies at least, plus some of the books are decidedly R-rated. I am certain Universal is going to aim for the LOTR fanbase and shoot for PG-13 all the way around. If that happens it could hurt some of the content. Plus with all the characters and plots and subplots this will be a tough series to put to film. I have always thought an HBO or Showtime series would be better suited.
Aug. 13, 2008, 9:44 a.m. CST
Anton Yelchin as Mat? Not quite, but he's the closest I can think of. Jonathan Tucker as Perrin? Shia LaBeouf as Rand? (Just kidding.) I'm blanking here, help me out.
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:07 a.m. CST
If they are paying homage to Robert Jordan, we need at least ten minutes every film with a narrator (preferably Morgan Freeman since he's reached James Earl Jones status on vocal work) talking about the impressive silks of one of the lands and how important it is to the people there.
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:24 a.m. CST
by vic twenty
Absolutely - This is literally Master and Commander with kickass dragons in it. I'm on the 3rd one now. The first two are good, quick reads.
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:29 a.m. CST
by earl of sandwich
Just my two cents. Having never read the Jordan books, but seen coutless copies in used books stores, this has no interest for me. Once you read the RR Martin Ice & Fire series, your are DONE. All others cease to exist. I can't think of a more worthy nerd saga to make it to the big (or HBO only small) screen than that series. Seriously, maybe that's why there are so many used copies floating around of the Wheel of Time series. Are they the Billy Joel "Glass Houses" of fantasy literature?
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:32 a.m. CST
Obviously, Morgan Freeman reading the intro passages would be great. The major characters need to have some cache, despite the fact they are rather young when the books start. They'll have to go with established actors and use makeup/CGI to make them younger at the start. I would go with Dane Cook as Rand, Simon Pegg as Matt, Hulk Hogan as Perrin, Kate Beckinsale as Moiraine Sedai, Angelina Jolie as Nynaeve, Artie Lange (digitally reproduced) as the Trollocs and Manute Bol as the wise Ogier leader.
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:36 a.m. CST
George RR Martin is great, and SOIAF started off GREAT, but the crash and burn of his series will be even greater than Jordan's. Jordan got through his entire series and had the outline of his final book when his life was cut tragically short by a bizzare illness. Martin took 8 years to write 3 books of his 7 book series, and has now apparently retired from writing all together, as his fat, pathetic butt spends all of his time traveling to conventions and licensing his half-finished work. At the current pace, there is no way Martin will get through HALF of his series, let alone the whole thing, before he croaks. He has angered me more than any other author in the history of time, as most of the other guys at least wait until their books are done before selling out. Steven Erikson is the new king - 8 great 1000+ page books so far, and he cranks 1 out a year. Malazan Empire is the new Middle Earth !
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:43 a.m. CST
you know what, they really would try to get Angelina Jolie as Nynaeve. heh.
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:49 a.m. CST
you know what ... it could work. I still like Hogan as Perrin the best. "I dreamt I was a wolf, BROTHER"
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:54 a.m. CST
If he can act, the dude who cameo'd as Colossus in X-Men would make a good Perrin. Mat and Rand would be trickier. Too bad Brendan Fraser's older now, a younger version would've been a great Rand. Rachel Weisz for Moiraine. Claire Forlani for Min Farshaw. I enjoyed the hell out of the first seven of these books. After that there were great moments, but they were buried under SO much unnecessary detail about nothing. I remember finishing one of the later books and realizing half it was about Elayne trying to run her country, but the political "intrigue" wasn't even interesting. I don't know if Jordan just wanted to milk it for all he could, or if he lost his direction as a writer, but the tone and energy of the first books gradually faded with each passing volume. It's a shame because I completely loved the first few, and have read them multiple times. Adapting this for a movie trilogy might be surprisingly easy, since a lot of the peripheral stories and characters can be completely cut without hurting the main plotline at all. Lose the Seanchan and Whitecloaks, as someone suggested, cut out any unnecessary political intrigue, which is most of it. The White Tower's civil war isn't really necessary, especially if you bring in the Ashaman. All the infighting and resurrections/murders between the Forsaken could be cut. It might be difficult for the average movie-goer to swallow Rand having three lovers that are all friendly with each other, so I would expect one or two of them to be cut or at least minimized. Oh, and anyone claiming this is just another Tolkein rip-off - either you haven't actually read the series, or you're a lazy reader. Every subsequent fantasy world has drawn that criticism, and it's an easy cop-out for people who want to dismiss something without actually having a reason to do so.
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:57 a.m. CST
Jonah Hill as Matt, Hayden Christiansen as Rand, Karl Urban as Perrin, Katie Holms as Moiraine Sedai, and Jessica Alba as Nynaeve. You know it is going to happen. Search your feelings Skywalker, you know it to be true.
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:58 a.m. CST
A young Matt Damon would be the perfect Rand, but he's 10 years too old these days.
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:58 a.m. CST
by earl of sandwich
Agreed. Martin's pace has pissed me off. BUT, I can't deny that within 5 pages of Feast for Crowes I wasn't back in heaven. Granted is I was royally annoyed at being denied any idea what was going on with some of the other main story arcs. But my understanding is that was the publishers doing, not Martins. So maybe Bantam are the ones who are making everyone wait? I can still remember back in the day as a young teen getting that big Stephen King hardcover for christmas every year from grandma (and the books were actually good too). So maybe Dance with Dragons hardcover this X-mas, paperback next? That seems to be the pattern. That only leaves 2 more books......hopefully in my lifetime. I want to see Arya kick some serious ass with Jon Snow by her side. (holy shit I'm a nerd)
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:09 a.m. CST
Hulk Hogan as Perrin, but ONLY if he rips his shirt open during every scene. I'm sold! <br> Patrick Stewart for Thom.
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:19 a.m. CST
Never understood why people I know thought Jordan wrote good female characters. Making them all a little bitchy and patronizing isn't good writing.
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:22 a.m. CST
Besides, only the first 5 books were worth a damn.
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:23 a.m. CST
That series has maintained a level of excellence rarely reached by Wheel of Time.
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:24 a.m. CST
Take a look at Martin's bibliography. Book 3, Storm of Swords, was publsihed in 2000, and at the time he was still saying it was a 5 book series. He did not release Book 4, A Feast for Crows, until 2005, at which time he made it clear the series would now be "7 or 8" books. When he released Feast For Crows, he was all over the place saying that he was basically done with Dance with Dragons, because he basically had to cut Feast for Crows in half. It is now 3 years since he was basically done with Dance with Dragons, and there is not a peep as to when the book will be done. Per his website, it is still not done, and he just spent the last 1.5 months in Europe on vacation, and has a full appearance schedule for the rest of the year. If he finished Dance with Dragons tomorrow and turned it into his editor, it would still not be published for another 6 months ... so we're looking at 2009 at the earliest. That means 13 years at the earliest between books 1 and five. At his current pace, with all of his time off and focus on other projects, I really don't seem him writing the final 3 books in under 10 years. Now look at the guy ? Do you think he's living another 10 years ? I'm not denying the books are great. I love them. His characters (Tyrion, Daenrys, Theon) are the best in the business, and the policitics and battle scenes (like the famous Wedding scene) are terrific ... but the fact is he is cruising for a tremendous disappointment, since I just don't see him wrapping up the series. Therefore, any enjoyment I take in reading his books is completely muted by (a) the fact he probably won't finish the series and (b) even if he does, he won't for nearly 10 years, which just makes me angry.
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:29 a.m. CST
Animation is the only way to capture the scope of the books
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:31 a.m. CST
He'd be PERFECT. Plus the kids love him. How about Camilla Belle for Egwene?
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:48 a.m. CST
I started reading this series in 1990, I think. I gave it a chance, I really did. But as it went on in just became unbearable. If you liked Wheel of Time but got annoyed with the twee preciousness of it all after awhile, as Jordan and his wife descended deeper and deeper into Eddingsland, do yourself a favor and pick up George R. R. Martin's Song of Ice and Fire books. He hasn't finished his series either and his books get longer and denser with each volume, so at least those factors will be familiar to WOT fans. ;) It's a much, much better series though.
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:49 a.m. CST
by earl of sandwich
Good points all. I'm just hoping for a nice surpise this X-mas. On point of contention though, some chubby guys do live to see 70...fingers crossed.
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:52 a.m. CST
The first four books flow very well. They would have to be distilled, certainly, but it could be done. It was only after Jordan begun stretching the series out - 20 years?? That it became awful. Almost everything after the fourth book can be jettisoned, of done in a flashback/flash forward sequence. Purists may yell, but they would anyway. And true fans know that those books were utter crap and only served to draw the series out. I can not beleive I have been reading these bokks that long. Goodkind sucks (well after the third book that is) - but at least he did not take 20 years to finally wrap it up. Martin might take 20 years just because he is slow - and his self-admitted enjoyment of life which means he writes when he wants to, not when the fans woud like. Which I totally support.
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:56 a.m. CST
are pretty boring. I got through the fifth book. Every female is an angry bitch who can't control her emotions and every male is a stubborn clod who is constantly confused. Everyone keeps secrets from each other for. . . no good reason. This "character driven" argument only works if the characters change, and with the exception that everyone gets more powerful and some of them fall in love, they continue to act like the same one-dimensional stupid fools they always were. I'm sorry, but that's about as "character driven" as a limp turd.
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:58 a.m. CST
For one, there are (will be) 12 books. Are they really expecting it to be a 1 movie/book deal? That's nuts. Second, the books (which I love apart from tedious over-descriptiveness most fantasy writers suffer from) follow so many plotlines and there are so many characters, I just don't see how it can translate effectively into a movie. It will be totally distilled into "Star Wars meets Lord of the Rings" and all of the great flavor of the world RJ built will be lost. Poo. This project will be about as difficult to film well as The Dark Tower series is going to be... perhaps moreso...
Aug. 13, 2008, 12:28 p.m. CST
The overwriting was just one symptom of bad editing, and a desire to squeeze as much life out of it as possible. You can love the series, and still be critical. The first book is perhaos the greatest fantasy story of all time. That includes Tolkein. It was that damn good. Explosive. Martins first two books are in the same category. But Jordan packed the series with fluff and nonsense. Rand became too damn powerful. The series should have ended when he got Callandor. Over and done. But that would have stopped ths cash from flowing./ Do we really need to see the Aiel ceremonies in order to enjoy the movie, or the Aes Sedai in-fighting? I loved that part of the series, and Egwene grew on me. As did Nynaeve, and I would be sorry if theor roles were lessened. BUt it aint necessary for the movie to work. And Jordan devoted entire books to secondary action. It is Rand and Mat and to a lesser extent, Perrin.
Aug. 13, 2008, 12:30 p.m. CST
by Liberty Valance
I read the first 4 volumes. Loved the 1st two, liked the third, but sweet fancy Moses that fourth book was 1000 pages of the characters walking around in circles. At the time Jordan had published 9 volumes with no end in sight so I gave up on it. Took up "Song of Ice and Fire" instead and was rewarded with an infintely more creative and emotionally satisfying fantasy epic.
Aug. 13, 2008, 12:30 p.m. CST
that got bogged down in Jordan's massive ego. Too many characters, too many plotlines, too much exposition, and the focus progressively shifted off the initial characters, to a subset of supporting role players whose stories were far less interesting. Also, while WoT did have female characters unlike LotR, I can't be the only person that found nearly all the female characters to be a collection of grating, annoying, uber-feminist harpies. Any time there was a chapter focusing on one of them (i.e., the last 6 books almost in their entirety) it made me rethink my stance on spousal abuse. No way this series can be adapted in Jordan's original intent.
Aug. 13, 2008, 12:57 p.m. CST
SPOILERS I wonder how many times Nynaeve will tug on her braid and adjust her breasts. How faithful will the adaptation be? Will movie audiences care when 8 or 9 books into the series - after killing off one or two of the major villains per book in each climax - they are all magically resurrected, rendering the point of those previous books to be largely...what exactly? Seriously, the first six books or so are fantastic, but then this series became so ridiculous I couldn't believe it. Hundreds and hundreds of pages of little to no plot advancement. Everytime I see someone at an airport reading the first or second book of this series, I want to slap it out of their hands and tell them to spare themselves the pain.<br><br>Give me a live-action Dragonlance, Hollywood! Much more adaptable, and much more worthy.
Aug. 13, 2008, 1:06 p.m. CST
And no true fan of the series should really want to see that anyway. The first book was damn near flawless. Yet, for the sake of a movie, it would need to be altered some, but of all the books, it would translate best. As much as I liked the way he empowered his women on one hand, he also went overboard with Rand and Mat trying to 'protect' the women, and the especially Rand whining every time one got a scratch. That drove me up a tree. Those storylines can easily be jettisoned. It is not impossible to distill Jordans work into three movies. I dare say quite a few of us would throw out three or four entire books without a second thought - because they were just filler. Concentate on Rand - do not make him so powerful that it ends the series prematurely. Mat - get him developed as a military genius much sooner. Moraine - damn i hope she comes back in the final book. And the Foresaken. Throw in some Aes Sedai. Perrin gets a mention, but he is boring -except for his one great fight defending the village as Lord Perrin. Thom goes. Elayne, who I love, is reduced to a minor role. Nyaneve, who I really love gets some screen time, but not too much. All other charcters including Egwene, get mentioned but barely shown. Either eliminate Callandor altogether - which admittedly is a tough call, or save it for the last movie and the face off with you know who.
Aug. 13, 2008, 1:13 p.m. CST
The first two or three books were fantastic. Lots of action, very interesting characters, and good world building. As you get further into the series they do get very long winded, and there is way to much exposition. By the time I got to the sixth and seventh book, I was so tired of reading about angry women tugging their hair, stomping their feet, and "harrumphing and huffing and sighing" and "steely gazes and icy stares and stony looks" and the over emphasizing of minute details of the environment, I was just ready to throw the damn books in the trash. The story is there...it just gets lost in the clutter by the middle of the series. These books really needed someone to step in and do some MAJOR editing. The good news is, they can do with the films. You really can't show exposition in movies and all the environmental and costume detail you can pack into a movie the better it looks. So I'm all for it, because the basic story and characters are pretty cool.
Aug. 13, 2008, 1:15 p.m. CST
and a few of you love the whole thing....this is still a drop in the bucket fan-wise compared to LOTR and would never get the budget it would require. The odds of a fanatically dedicated director/producer who could sort through the minutia and do this some sort of justice are pretty long as well.
Aug. 13, 2008, 1:24 p.m. CST
The people saying it's impossible to film as written are forgetting something - if a book is filled with a character tugging their hair, the book will have a paragraph about it, while the movie she'd do it while stuff is happening - turning around and walking away, people (including her) talking, etc. A book filled with those little action things would make a movie that was very condensed and full of action and dialogue. Heck, look at this next Harry Potter movie, the book was like 80% character thoughts. Also don't forget that it's being adapted by the same company that already adapted it into graphic novels, so it's already more than halfway to movie-script form.
Aug. 13, 2008, 1:31 p.m. CST
by Irina Spanko
I'm sure it will be moderately popular, unfortunately.
Aug. 13, 2008, 1:35 p.m. CST
I might get excited when The Malazan Book of the Fallen series by Steven Erikson gets the big screen treatment. Anomander Rake on a movie screen.... Hell ya.
Aug. 13, 2008, 1:47 p.m. CST
Are they any good? Who publishes them?
Aug. 13, 2008, 1:48 p.m. CST
Like one of the poster above, I read the first four books. They were okay. I always found the the latter half of the books were extremely good, but the first half always lacking. Books 2-4, the first half always ended up being a complete recap of the last book (basically 200-300 pages of filler). It drove me nuts. As a film, I can't see this happening, it's 12 freaking books, doing only a trilogy does a huge disservice to the fans. If it was some sort of TV/Cable series, it could work.
Aug. 13, 2008, 1:53 p.m. CST
read the article? They are only talking about Eye of The World which is almost a stand alone book. I've read tons of fantasy over the last 20 years since the 6th grade and Jordan is very much unlike any other fantasy except for the Jordan copy cats. There is very little if any Tolkien influence in his writing. His series social and political era is very American Colonial and Elightenment period. Oh ya and Feast of Crows was horrible. The first three rocked but number 4 was weak as hell.
Aug. 13, 2008, 1:57 p.m. CST
by Pops Freshemeyer
The odds of Martin finishing the series are non existent. I'm quite certain that it's safe to say he'll die of a hot wing overdose well before the sixth book of the series is released. Which will completely and totally suck...
Aug. 13, 2008, 2:11 p.m. CST
by The Decider
But I think good film adaptations could be really good.
Aug. 13, 2008, 2:14 p.m. CST
by The Nihilist
Just going to reiterate points most have made: The series was too long, too many characters, too many concepts, too many plotlines, not enough plot movement. I ditched it about the time dead villains started getting resurrected. And Christ, did I hate pretty much every single female character--arrogant, bossy, obnoxious hags one and all. I've dreamed of a fanfic crossover between the Wheel of Time/Song of Ice and Fire worlds, along the lines of DC and Marvel crossing over. I'd like to see any of the Aes Sedai try bossing around, say Gregor Clegane or Tywin Lannister. And "twee preciousness," as somebody above called it, was correct. Too many of the characters have a schoolmarmish approach to morality, too much finger wagging and preaching (again, especially from the female characters). As for "Song of Ice and Fire?" Awesome series that, for the reasons somebody mentioned above, will probably never be finished. Somebody needs to chain Martin to his desk and make him write, releasing him only for the occasional light Atkins meal or a brisk walk.
Aug. 13, 2008, 2:38 p.m. CST
We need someone to come in and make the Icewind Dale Triology. Ray Park will play Drizzt and chop up anyone in his path! You want a real movie series up there with LOTR? Icewind Dale would be king...R.A. Salvatore, are you reading this?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?
Aug. 13, 2008, 2:59 p.m. CST
I gave up around book seven or so. I can handle only so much nervous shawl knitting and man-hating two dimensional women. The women in these books are either door-mat ninies or man hating nut jobs and it got OLD FAST.
Aug. 13, 2008, 3:07 p.m. CST
No. there isn't. That's the problem with the books. They are way longer than they need to be. Did Jordan even have an editor? I really don't think so. I'm just sick of fantasy options. Get us some decent SF dammit. And I don't mean that Lucas swill.
Aug. 13, 2008, 3:29 p.m. CST
This is great news...been waiting for this for awhile...read all the books twice in a 18 month period...SO PUMPED FOR THIS!
Aug. 13, 2008, 3:37 p.m. CST
Some other talkbacker said it best. Whenever you have a fantasy series mentioned the same things come out: 1) Song of Ice and Fire is better, then debate that madly. Check. 2) Work better as HBO series. Check. 3) Sword of Truth series really sucks--why did they greenlight that before WOT? Check. Talkbacks done--this goes round and a round and a round anytime these three series are mentioned. Here's my two cents. Check. GRRM sucks by the way--he is going to croak, he's always sick on his blog, always travelling, etc. Revoke his passport.I love his series but I don't really consider it fantasy, its definately more real medievil stuff. I would love to see if Vegas odds have been created on whether he will finish--I would put a grand on no.
Aug. 13, 2008, 3:40 p.m. CST
Haven't read book 5 yet. Hopefully something happens to return the series to greatness of first two.
Aug. 13, 2008, 4:06 p.m. CST
That what the people really want to know!
Aug. 13, 2008, 4:57 p.m. CST
Nope they aren't. They are knock offs of several fantasy series including LotR.
Aug. 13, 2008, 5:16 p.m. CST
endless descriptions of interiors and clothes...it seem like at least 50-60% of the book! "her dress was a shimmering translucent green..." that type of crap for pages and pages. The series was awesome up to that point tho.
Aug. 13, 2008, 5:25 p.m. CST
No. No no no no. At it's best, an Icewind Dale movie is just another Van Helsing. At its worst its Ultraviolet bad. Tell me why I'm wrong.
Aug. 13, 2008, 5:54 p.m. CST
Most fantasy novels are the literary equivalent of van murals.
Aug. 13, 2008, 6:02 p.m. CST
LOL As soon as the lawyer signed over Jordan's property to some family member, they didn't hesitate to put that baby into a multi-million dollar film deal.
Aug. 13, 2008, 6:47 p.m. CST
This could be a fantasy epic film saga on par with Lord of the Rings...or it could be as hollow and lifeless as Eragon was (but shouldn't have been!) Get someone with passion and dedication to the source material. Yes, the Novels are Long and obviously alot will be trimmed, but you need someone who "Gets" the Spirit of the Wheel of Time and truly is dedicated with every aspect of their being with the task of making the literature into film. If you spare no expense at the quality of the actors, special effects and locales, this will be a pure success among fans and all the way to the bank; just my 2 cents...
Aug. 13, 2008, 7:25 p.m. CST
by Ash Talon
Book 2 is the best in my mind. The climax is probably the best of any fantasy story I've ever read. <P> I didn't mind the continuing novels. Jordan's story just got bigger than he originally intended. Later books just made the world more complex, and each book seemed to center on one of the main characters. Each time it would cut to another main character, I'd almost get upset, since I was enjoying the one I was reading about. <P> Overall, it's just too complex a story to carry out in just films. A continuing TV show would be the best but wouldn't have the budget to properly carry out the battles. <P> The concepts regarding the One Power are fantastic, though. The huge role for women in the story isn't to be underestimated either. They're more powerful than all the men for most of it anyway. Casting is key, though, since it's all about character.
Aug. 13, 2008, 7:48 p.m. CST
The first couple were decent. Not great... just not bad. After book 3, things went downhill fast and hard. The Wheel of Time series is, overall, absolutely terrible fantasy. The fact that someone is interested in making a movie/tv show out of thousands of pages of feminine pouting makes me simultaneously sad and disgusted. At least HBO is doing A Song of Ice and Fire and Peter Jackson is doing Temeraire... right?
Aug. 13, 2008, 7:52 p.m. CST
by Liquid Meddle
Those deserve the proper treatment. Great fucking novels. Just don't let the Sci-Fi channel anywhere near it.
Aug. 13, 2008, 7:53 p.m. CST
by Liquid Meddle
And what happened to the first book of the Thomas Covenant Chronicles being made into a movie? I loved that series.
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:08 p.m. CST
Aug. 13, 2008, 10:57 p.m. CST
Who the fuck is Brandon Sanderson???
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:02 p.m. CST
lol this is fun.
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:03 p.m. CST
stupid limited subject space.
Aug. 13, 2008, 11:57 p.m. CST
I guess we'll *finally* know how to pronounce the characters' names. But seriously, how much of the series is going to be adapted? You make two movies, a new director comes in, a new music composer, your actors start leaving, the ones who stay start aging too quickly for their parts, the two-year gap between fims becomes three, and so forth. Even if they compress twelve books into nine movies, I still don't think any studio is up to it.
Aug. 14, 2008, 12:09 a.m. CST
A Song of Ice and Fire, The Amber Chronicles and The Black Company books. I'm suprised no one's mentioned the last. Picture The Dirty Dozen meets Lord of the Rings but from the antagonist's point of view. Can't wait for the HBO series. Finally an adult fantasy series instead of all this family friendly, Harry Potter shit. Enough already with that.
Aug. 14, 2008, 12:24 a.m. CST
If anyone things that the movies will even remotely resemble the books, their mad. Unless the movies are 6 hours long, even then they'd be cut to shreds. It would be better to go for a TV series, each book could possibly be made into 22 - one hour episodes. As others have said, the first 3 or 4 books arn't bad, but it really gets mind numbing around book 6 or 7. Then by book 9 you can tell that Jordan is milking the cash cow for every last drop, and you can't help but be frustrated because you have invested all this time into reading 9000+ pages of this stuff. DO you give up? or tread on. At around the 9th book, Jordan mentioned that he "might" finish the series by book 15. Did you hear that.. book 15!!!! Obviously with his illness, he knew the end was near, and decided that enough was enough with milking the cash cow, and it was time to wrap things up. So now there's just one more book to go. But that is only because Jordan got sick and died. If he was healthy, there still would be no end in sight. What irks me is that Jordan had such a great thing going, and he spoiled it.
Aug. 14, 2008, 1:08 a.m. CST
Anyone who can get through all the books and still comprehend the plot, characters, events, etc. I bow to your superior ability to endure a great but flawed work of fiction. That being said, Robert Jordan has written some of the greatest Conan stories I have ever read. Those should be made into movies, not The Wheel of Time. Is Eye of the World a Tolkien ripoff? Let's see...Moraine Sedai and her Warder (Gandalf) travel from Tar Valon (Sauramon's tower) to the Two Rivers (the shire) to meet country folk (hobbits) who mysteriously possess special talents which get better over time (using the one ring to disappear) and they all go on a quest where they get chased by trollocs (orcs) and end up confronting powerful demons called The Forsaken (Smaug, Sauron). But, it was his intention to pay homage to Tolkien's work - I guess it is up to the reader to decide the difference between a "ripoff" or "respect". In his defense, it is really difficult to create an original fantasy story without some elements from Tolkien or Lovecraft.
Aug. 14, 2008, 5:10 a.m. CST
I'll give this one a pass. Long and totally derivative. Fantasy /sci fi books / series that should be made into films include, of course, Conan, Elric & Corum series from Moorcock, the Wizard of Earthsea trilogy, Jack Vance's Dying Earth and Demon Princes series, Lieber's Fahrd and Gray Mouser series, Iain M Bank's Culture novels, China Mieville's Bas-Lag novels. All brilliant stories.
Aug. 14, 2008, 8:01 a.m. CST
It's damn near a point-by-point re-telling of Fellowship of the Ring. <p>Seriously, I was interested in the characters, but I just couldn't keep reading the same pages over and over again. <p>How many times can I read that this charcater doesn't like this character, that this character wants that character, that men act this way, that women act that way, that he's sad about x, that she's angry about y. Ugh. <p>The guy takes 30 pages to describe what could easily be told in 5, and then repeats it every 50 pages just to make sure you get it. I had to quit reading.
Aug. 14, 2008, 9:11 a.m. CST
Jesus christ, I hate everyone sometimes. Instead of BITCHING that this series or that series isn't being made, how about you MARVEL AT THE FACT THAT THIS RIDICULOUSLY LONG (and UNFINISHED) story is coming to a theater near you! That should give you HOPE for your series-du-jour. All anyone does these days is bitch that something is being made. It's reached that point, people are complaining every time something is made. Fucking pathetic.<br><br>As far as adapting this goes, that's exactly what it is: an adaptation. Show me a LotR purist who thinks they nailed every single aspect of those books, and I'll show you a fool. Were they good movies? Fuck yes. Did they destroy the books so that no one can ever read them again? No! GET OVER IT.<br><br>There is a LOT of behind the scenes stuff going on in these books that can be cut down or removed completely. It will not, in any way, make the movie(s) bad.<br><br>Egwene is a douche.<br><br>And now for some (mostly TV) casting choices: Chris Evans (Sunshine - Fuck the Fantastic Four) for Rand; Jason Dohring (Veronica Mars) for Mat; I got nothing for Perrin; Tina Majorino (also Veronica Mars) for Egwene; Kristen Bell (literally Veronica Mars) for Elayne; Cobie Smulders (How I Met Your Mother) for Nynaeve. I'll have more when I think of them, and it probably won't be when I'm posting here...
Aug. 14, 2008, 9:27 a.m. CST
I have no argument with the fact that RJ wrote WAY too much to describe WAY too little, but even condensing it it's a lot of disparate plotlines that will be tough the further they go into the series. End it at Callandor. And WTF Fawst, you want the cast of Veronica Mars to do WoT? LOL.
Aug. 14, 2008, 10:40 a.m. CST
I read Jordan's first six books and marginally enjoyed them, though they certainly haven't aged well. Robert J had a funky imagination, and his violent scenes were pretty intense, but overall the guy is the most verbose writer I've ever read. A good author would've shortened the first six books into 2 or 3 novels, thus pushing the pace 100 mph faster while escalating the drama. I swear, by the end of the sixth book, I never wanted to hear about Nynaeve pouting or "pulling her braid"... EVER AGAIN! My fucking God, that was annoying. Jordan's cloyingly unnecessary details and lack of narrative drive ruined it for me.<p> That, and the fact I heard from a friend that the last several books went absolutely nowhere. Well, they went somewhere, but at the pace of a snail pushing across a lake of ice in the dead of winter. Fans of role playing games who enjoy meticulous attention to detail generally enjoy these books. But fans of well-paced drama should look elsewhere.<p> If the screenwriter for this project eliminates ten to fifteen characters, as well as 75 percent of Jordan's ramblings, and focuses the plot on its essentials, I might be interested in seeing a "Wheel of Time" film.<p> Not likely, but I might.
He created a very interesting world, but had no idea what to do with it. The quest in the first book was to keep the world from getting too cold. Then in book 6 (which is as far as I got), they were on a quest because the world was getting too hot. Then he started resurrecting Forsaken for no good reason other than he had no idea how to advance the story. There might be enough to work with to make two or three interesting movies, if it's heavily rewritten. Count me among those waiting for A Song of Ice and Fire.
Aug. 14, 2008, 10:57 a.m. CST
laden with heavy shopping. <p> And they were about as interesting.
Aug. 14, 2008, 11:10 a.m. CST
I tried reading them, and they are very bad, cliched fantasy books. kind of like Eragon. there are what 14 books in the series? every book is pretty much the same story- and ends pretty much the same. very bad- and will be a really bad movie
Aug. 14, 2008, 11:54 a.m. CST
The first five or so books were fantastic. I was a huge huge fan and would read one book in a few days and hate that I had to wait 2+ years for the next. The books started getting convoluted at number 7 for me. I made it that far and never got past it. Just like Terry Goodkind's Sword of Truth series (which has a huge similarity to WoT... things that make you go hmmmm ) the story was pushed past it's natural ending point IMO to keep raking in money for the publisher. I believe a lot of WoT fans just gave up. For some odd reason I'm not surprised by this news. Sam Raimi is turning Terry Goodkind's Sword of Truth series into a TV show, which I think would be better for WoT. The books are too dense (in both senses of the word... I think) for a movie. What's worse, with Terry Goodkind, they've change the name to "The Legend of the Seeker" to avoid any magic/occult references so as not to piss off religious zealots. Stupid.
Aug. 14, 2008, 12:16 p.m. CST
Technically I just want two people from that. I could have easily just said "Tina Majorino (from Waterworld)" but that would have been ... bad. :) Actually, that kid Jason Dohring is my pick for Eddie in the Dark Tower. He's sarcastic and a pretty good actor. That's why I thought of him for Mat, he has the dry selfish sense of humor thing down really well.
Aug. 14, 2008, 12:46 p.m. CST
Wheel of Time is optioned, Shannara was optioned last year, Elfquest finally getting a movie after 30 long years...just fucking get a Thomas Covenant movie made, already. (Pre-note to all you "leper rapist" haters: go fuck yourselves, ignorant bastards.)
Aug. 14, 2008, 3:12 p.m. CST
Jordan has everything thoroughly described, leaving the production designer the simple job of following a 5000 page recipe for every setting, outfit, fabric, sword and monster. Also, Shai'tan is pretty self-explanatory, but why Rand Al' Thor? Is he a thunder god and a writer of objectivist diatribes? Ultimate Mindfuck-Rand Al'thor becomes Flagg from Dark Tower (hence Randall Flagg) Imagine if they could get Stephen King on board with that idea.
Aug. 14, 2008, 5:25 p.m. CST
Re-reading the series so I can finish Knife of Dreams and not be completely lost. I have been reading these books since 1995, so bring on the movies.
Aug. 18, 2008, 10:51 a.m. CST