I was watching television the other night. More and more lately there is very little I see on the networks I find enjoyable. The idea is either a rehash of one that was not done all that well the first time, or the Hollywood types decided they needed to tweek the premise “just a bit” to make it “fresh”. Come on now, Waston as an oriental woman??? Sorry, not in my livingroom. I had a hard enough time with Starbuck being given a sex change.
Ann McCaffery’s Dragonflight has been tossed around the forums as being turned into a movie and then, no…not happening. It turns out that until Hollywood becomes desperate enough to make the thing the way that grand lady wrote it, characterizations and all, it will more than likely not see the light of day. This is because, for some obviously insane reason, the studios think they know better than the author who sold millions of copies.
So the question is, would you sell your rights for some extra dough? Jim Butcher did, and look what they did to his georgeous prose. Dresden’s staff became a hockey stick and Murphy became a tall redhead while Mister the cat didn’t exist at all. Back in one of my earlier posts I mentioned the Lord of the Rings movies and the controversy Peter Jackson stirred up when he refused to bow to pressure to cut and cut and cut in order to fit the story into one two-hour film. The critics (you gotta love ’em) claimed no one would sit through a three hour introduction, that’s what the first film was called. Funny thing, you don’t hear much from those same folks today.
Hollywood is yet another example of the definition of insanity. They continue to do the same thing over and over again, refusing to accept the ongoing continuous result.
If you are approached with an offer to sell your book to a movie producer, insist on creative control. Don’t be surprised if the offer is instantaneously pulled.