Movie News

Paramount Gets Rights To Ray Bradbury's THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES!

Published at: April 12, 2011, 4:01 p.m. CST by Nordling

Nordling here.

The Hollywood Reporter's Heat Vision blog is reporting today that Paramount Studios has secured the rights to Ray Bradbury's classic short story collection THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES.  Many attempts have been made over the years to bring this book to the screen; there was even a miniseries on NBC in 1980 that was pretty good, if I remember correctly.  I always especially loved "Mars Is Heaven!", which still scares even today.

The book was originally in the hands of Universal, who tried for years to get a version made, even with Steven Spielberg producing, but nothing came of it.  Now producer John Davis (PREDATOR, and unfortunately MARMADUKE and NORBIT... shudder) has the project, and considering the scope of the story, it will likely be a tentpole film for the studio.

I have the feeling Mars is going to be a popular vacation spot at the movies, based on next year's JOHN CARTER OF MARS and this.  Looking forward to this film if it happens; this book has been notoriously difficult to adapt.  With a big budget behind it, we may get to see Ray Bradbury's epic collection finally realized on screen.

Nordling, out.

Readers Talkback

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  • April 12, 2011, 4:07 p.m. CST

    Doesn't count if you question your first!

    by PULL_SMASH

    Ha just joshing, good for you buddy. Me and your ma are just so damn proud of ya!

  • April 12, 2011, 4:07 p.m. CST

    nothing ever happens on mars

    by tim

    no fun no fun no fun

  • April 12, 2011, 4:08 p.m. CST

    The NBC series has not aged well

    by ATARI

    This is a remake that I support.

  • April 12, 2011, 4:12 p.m. CST

    the martian dying with his face changing...

    by Gorgomel

    .. because people thought to recognize someone they loved scared the shit out of me when I was a kid. But yes, the NBC series hasn't aged well and a lot of cool stuff from Bradbury's masterpiece were missing. Let's just hope it won't be directed by Roland Emmerich or Michael Bay but by someone who really dig the book.

  • April 12, 2011, 4:15 p.m. CST

    Yep, Hack directors need not apply

    by Andy Pandy

    Keep your mitts off this classic

  • April 12, 2011, 4:22 p.m. CST

    Spike Lee should do the "Blacks Run Mars" story.

    by cookylamoo

  • April 12, 2011, 4:29 p.m. CST

    Spoiler!

    by c4andmore

    The Martians are human at the end.

  • April 12, 2011, 4:41 p.m. CST

    sithmenace_RETURNS?

    by FlickaPoo

    ...did you get banned?

  • April 12, 2011, 5:04 p.m. CST

    Loved, devoured the miniseries on TV as a kid

    by deelzbub

    and the way it ended totally creeped me out and stayed with me for a long time

  • April 12, 2011, 5:27 p.m. CST

    this project is just screaming Duncan Jones...

    by Squinty CGI Flynn

    any equally talented director with an interest and utter respect for the material could make this work. Let's hear some suggestions for other qualified directors.

  • April 12, 2011, 5:28 p.m. CST

    SIMPSONS CLASSIC

    by wackybantha

    Martin Prince: As your president, I would demand a science-fiction library, featuring an ABC of the genre. Asimov, Bester, Clarke. Student: What about Ray Bradbury? Martin Prince: I'm aware of his work...

  • April 12, 2011, 5:47 p.m. CST

    Stranger in a Strange Land?

    by awardgiver

    as another Mars Sci Fi that has yet to be made into a move? Introduction by Charles Manson.

  • April 12, 2011, 5:52 p.m. CST

    Re Stranger in a Strange Land

    by c4andmore

    Yeah I can see the conservatards on FauxNews devour that as hippie propaganda.

  • April 12, 2011, 5:53 p.m. CST

    LOVE THIS BOOK....

    by Loosejerk

    This along with Fahrenheit are two book that I re-read at least every other year. In 'Chronicles', I love to sit down with "The Earth Men" story from time to time. I've never caught any of the film adaptations.

  • Then Profit

  • April 12, 2011, 6:08 p.m. CST

    same guy that produced PREDATOR produced NORBIT and MARMADUKE?

    by zom-bot.com

    that is testament to the fact that producers are not SHIT to a movie but the investor. i've never held any faith in a movie when they say 'from the producer/s of.......' producing is the fundage and some arranging of the movie making process, but has little to do with the creative vision, other than budget dictating the result.

  • April 12, 2011, 6:45 p.m. CST

    Check out....

    by Gislef_crow

    The Ray Bradbury Theater. The better stories were adapted for it anyway: Usher II, Mars is Heaven, The Earthmen, Silent Towns, And the Moon Be Still As Bright, The Martian, The Concrete Mixer.

  • April 12, 2011, 6:48 p.m. CST

    They better not fuck this up.

    by Justicer7

    Yep.

  • April 12, 2011, 6:49 p.m. CST

    I'm more looking forward to the MARTIN CHRONICLES

    by DoctorWho?

    SHANAYNAYYYYYY!!!!!

  • April 12, 2011, 7:31 p.m. CST

    funny how studios jump when a title is similar

    by JimmyJoe RedSky

    it took john carter getting the go ahead in order for universal to commit to chronicles - "we have a mars movie too!"

  • April 12, 2011, 7:33 p.m. CST

    justicer7 ... "they" will

    by JimmyJoe RedSky

    its being rushed into production to release next summer

  • April 12, 2011, 7:58 p.m. CST

    (Face Palm)

    by Half-Baked-Goggle-Box-Do-Gooder

    Right. The studio that is flapping around like a beheaded chicken and refusing to get behind "World War Z" is now the owner/molester of "The Martian Chronicles". Wonder how many decades they'll dither and procrastinate on this one? We'll fucking be ON Mars by the time Paramount makes up it's mind what to do with this property. They'll probably hand it over to that ratfuck Bay before it's all said and done.

  • April 12, 2011, 8:27 p.m. CST

    At least it ain't a sequel, remake or comic book

    by CountryBoy

  • April 12, 2011, 8:34 p.m. CST

    Get your ass to MAH-S!

    by Cap'n Jack

  • April 12, 2011, 9:40 p.m. CST

    Found out about this when Googling an event idea I had for a film

    by TheJudger

    Found out it was used already in this book. Well sort of. Also found ou tthat Zach Synder wanted to direct a film based on on some of these short stories.

  • April 12, 2011, 9:43 p.m. CST

    LOVED the NBC series.

    by Jaster

    In fact I still have it on DVD. I loved the whole trailer trash element and Americana coming to Mars and commercializing it then having the Martians fight back telepathically. I just thought it was a really neat concept. I agree with someone earlier saying to "LOTR" it. Make it a trilogy, flesh out the characters really well and build the suspense. But the ending is shit, that needs to be fixed. I'm sorry but saying "We're the real Martians" is just stupid. Yes I get philosophically what he was saying, and that works fine in a novel, but for a film, particularly a series of films, we need better than that.

  • April 12, 2011, 10:23 p.m. CST

    PARAMOUNT will NEVER make this

    by Angry Mike

    They won't have the balls, brains or faith that it will turn profit. And if they did, the suits will interfere so much the story would be watered down and unrecognizable. Not to mention that Will Smith will suddenly become interested and we will get another I Robot.

  • April 12, 2011, 10:45 p.m. CST

    loved the old miniseries, cheese and all

    by oisin5199

    had Rock Hudson, Darren McGavin, and probably lots of other people I don't remember. But Ray Bradbury's stuff is like Twilight Zone material. I'm not sure a big screen treatment will work. Especially since they're all short stories. But god I hope they do the House of Usher chapter - that was one freaky part that never made it into the miniseries. Now how about a new version of Dandelion Wine?

  • April 12, 2011, 11:52 p.m. CST

    Just do RED MARS, GREEN MARS, BLUE MARS

    by Green

    by Kim Stanley Robinson.

  • April 13, 2011, 1:25 a.m. CST

    re: Kim Stanley Robinson's "Mars" saga:

    by Ray Gamma

    There is no way that any production of those books could do them justice. The first book alone, "Red Mars", would take a trilogy of movies to achieve on screen. There is so much scientifically plausible detail, realism and political "future history" crammed into Robinson's epic, it is absolutely the antithesis of everything Hollywood does these days. It would be absolutely ruined by any attempt to film it. Unfilmable.

  • April 13, 2011, 1:27 a.m. CST

    more about Robinson's "Mars" trilogy:

    by Ray Gamma

    also, the suits would go "When do the aliens come in?".

  • April 13, 2011, 3:32 a.m. CST

    Loved the miniseries. Own it on DVD

    by V'Shael

    and yeah, the Mars as Heaven bit was terrifying as a kid. "But you're not thirsty." Fucking hell.

  • "Oh yeah, those pretty much tanked. We'd better scrap this..."

  • April 13, 2011, 6:25 a.m. CST

    Who will play Jesus in the remake?

    by Arafel

    My vote would be for Russel Brand to play the Son of God, Jesus Christ, in the remake of THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES.

  • April 13, 2011, 6:58 a.m. CST

    More story segments, less Rod Steiger!

    by venvariants

    The main problem with, say, The Illustrated Man, is that the bumper material had more screen time than Ray's actual stories did! They could have packed 3-4 more stories in for all the time they spent on Steiger prattling on and on. They should do a trilogy, and just commit to filming every single story in the Martian collection..!

  • April 13, 2011, 9:42 a.m. CST

    Yes! Give Bradbury's work a decent adaptation!

    by Jeditemple

    Finally, maybe we'll see a real studio treat his work with some respect. I have been a Ray Bradbury fan for years. I can't wait to see what they come up with. It this does well, maybe we'll see an adaption of Farenheit 451 that's worth seeing.

  • April 13, 2011, 10:03 a.m. CST

    Farenheit 451

    by Jaster

    I agree that would be a great movie. Mel Gibson was attached to it for like EVER before giving up. There is a movie version but it's really old and not very good. Frankly, just go watch Equilibrium because it's essentially the same story and is excellent.

  • April 13, 2011, 11:21 a.m. CST

    The effects for the miniseries were pretty cheesey.

    by Bubba Gillman

    But I thought it captured the wistful tone of the book. Plus, Bernadette Peters provided a lot of "fodder" if you get my meaning.

  • April 13, 2011, 11:22 a.m. CST

    Instead, why not ...

    by The StarWolf

    Do a film version of his FROST AND FIRE?

  • April 13, 2011, 11:44 a.m. CST

    The Mini-Series Sucked Ass

    by Jack Desmondi

    It wasn't the scripts fault, or the actors. I remember them being quite good. But the special effects were fucking AWFUL. Even for the day, the spaceship landing scenes looked like something out of Plan 9 From Outer Space-chintzy models that look like models. God they were awful.

  • April 13, 2011, 2:27 p.m. CST

    Yeah that mini series was a howler

    by Knobules

    And dull

  • April 13, 2011, 4:56 p.m. CST

    Spielberg + Bradbury =

    by ufoclub1977

    WIN

  • April 13, 2011, 5:48 p.m. CST

    Duncan Jones...

    by Zombiana_Jones

    ...Would totally be awesome on this. And I really would love to see Spielberg direct it, as well... ...But they won't do it. Some other asshole will fucking Bay-it-up and ruin it. This is my favorite book ever; for me, it's now passed from being simple fiction to unabashed art and poetry, pure and simple. Some people read Tolkein once a year; I read Bradbury. And the current fucktards in Hollywood only see dollar signs. So Fuck 'em. Fuck 'em with a big, stone dildo. For desecrating something holy.

  • April 13, 2011, 7:58 p.m. CST

    I would love, love, love for Spielberg to direct Bradbury's Martian Chronicles

    by Orbots Commander

    Good second choice director: Sam Mendes.

  • April 13, 2011, 9:21 p.m. CST

    Not special special effects.

    by Yer_Maw

    I watched the mini series again a few months ago (first time since seeing it when it was broadcast - I guess I was 10). Really not good. The effects were among the worst I've ever seen in a professional production (I even kind of remember thinking that when I saw it as a kid). I mean how can you fuck up a Ray Bradbury book adapted buy Richard Matheson?!? Having said that about the effects, I hope that whoever does this adaptation doesn't throw money at it. We don't need another 'I Am Legend' where the original classic material doesn't require endless CGI but gets it anyway.

  • April 13, 2011, 9:28 p.m. CST

    And by 'buy' ...

    by Yer_Maw

    ... I mean 'by'.

  • April 13, 2011, 11:25 p.m. CST

    Scope too big for a film

    by ennio

    Demands to be made as an HBO mini-series. Too much important stuff would have to be cut in a 2-hour film. Favorite section of the book without ruining anything: when that man is isolated and can't find another soul within miles, then hears a phone ring out in the night...

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