Yaron Zilberman is set to write and direct a feature based on Orson Scott Card‘s classic science-fiction short story, Unaccompanied Sonata. The property has been optioned by Nick Wechsler, Chockstone Pictures’ Steve and Paula Mae Schwartz and Opening Night Productions. The film will be titled Sonata, with Wechsler, Schwartz, Schwartz and Zilberman producing. The latter made his feature directorial debut on the 2012 film A Late Quartet. Tamar Sela will be executive producer and Roger Schwartz a co-producer.
First published in Omni magazine in 1979, Unaccompanied Sonata is about a child who has been brought up to be a musical prodigy, and who is kept away from other musical influences to keep his creative expressions pure. Raised alone in a cabin by servants, he spends his days toiling on a complicated musical instrument, as he’s kept from listening to the works of others. Finally, he gains exposure to the works of Bach, and when discovered by a “watcher,” the man is torn away from his lifelong composition and barred from making music ever again. Read More »
Looking hard for new youth-oriented franchises to line up alongside The Hunger Games, Summit Entertainment gave the Comic-Con crowd in Hall H a peek at two aspirants to be franchises in Divergent and Ender’s Game.
Even though it went second today, I will focus first on Ender’s Game, the Gavin Hood-directed adaptation of the Orson Scott Card novel series about the attempt to find youthful prodigies with the gunner skills to save humanity from invading aliens. The film has gotten recent unwanted exposure because of the personal views the author has expressed against same-sex marriage, prompting distributor Summit to disavow attitudes that have nothing to do with the film.
While the film company might have preferred the issue not come up — the author was conspicuously absent — there was no such luck. When the panelists fielded questions, the first one was to ask how the makers of the film are dealing with the Card controversy. Producer Roberto Orci said they stood behind Summit and Lionsgate’s statement supporting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights and that he would hate to see the fortunes of the movie discounted, given its themes of tolerance and empathy. “Rather than shy away from this, I would reiterate that we support LGBT rights, and human rights,” Orci said. Read More »
Just six days remain until Lionsgate brings its new big budget sci-fi franchise Ender’s Game to Comic-Con, where the studio is keeping controversial author and anti-gay advocate Orson Scott Card out of its panel line-up. But an online protest calling out Card for his inflammatory past remarks has now prompted Lionsgate to step into the fray for some damage control. The “Skip Ender’s Game” petition hosted by Geeks OUT calls for fans to boycott the Summit-released November 1 pic in theaters, on DVD, and On Demand and to avoid buying merchandising and toys to “keep your money out of Orson Scott Card’s pockets.” Card responded to the furor with his own cry for tolerance last week, which only stoked the fire. The studio today announced unspecified plans to host a benefit premiere to support LGBT causes. Here’s Lionsgate’s statement:
As proud longtime supporters of the LGBT community, champions of films ranging from Gods and Monsters to The Perks of Being a Wallflower and a company that is proud to have recognized same-sex unions and domestic partnerships within its employee benefits policies for many years, we obviously do not agree with the personal views of Orson Scott Card and those of the National Organization for Marriage. However, they are completely irrelevant to a discussion of Ender’s Game. The simple fact is that
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Harrison Ford will return for the second time to San Diego Comic-Con as Summit presents its next would-be franchise, Ender’s Game – but controversial author Orson Scott Card will not be joining in the festivities. The Hugo and Nebula Award-winning novelist drew fire for his publicly anti-gay views earlier this year when DC Comics tapped him to pen a Superman comic. Despite being a producer on the film and a huge figure in the sci-fi-fantasy world, Card’s conspicuously being kept at a distance from the film’s promotional campaign. Not that Summit’s lacking in star power. Ford, who made his first Comic-Con appearance for 2010′s Cowboys & Aliens, is set to appear in Hall H on Thursday, July 18 with producer Bob Orci, director Gavin Hood, and co-stars Asa Butterfield, Hailee Steinfeld, and Abigail Breslin to preview new footage from the sci-fi adaptation about a young boy recruited into an intergalactic war. Offsite Summit is constructing an 8-room interactive Ender’s Game exhibit for fans in the heavily trafficked downtown Gaslamp district, in addition to hosting its usual booth on the convention floor. It’s a big promo push for the November 1 release as Summit attempts to launch its next YA-driven franchise now that The Twilight Saga is over. Meanwhile, parent company Lionsgate was first out of the … Read More »