Although Dan Simmons' literary-allusion-packed Hyperion novels have long been loved and critically-acclaimed, they've always seemed to resist conversion into film. Episodic, cyber-spiritual, and strange, the first novel tells the intertwined stories of several characters trying to get wishes granted by an entity called the Shrike on Hyperion, a planet full of really cool monsters and scary trees. Corporate-state weirdness and singularity manufacturing technologies provide a dreamy, far-future backdrop. Its sequel, Fall of Hyperion, is a more straightforward tale of posthuman political machinations, but no less complex. How will newly-announced writer Trevor Sands turn both books into one, coherent flick?
Apparently, by simplifying the hell out of stories whose main appeal has always been their rich complexity. According to Hollywood Reporter:
Sands won over the execs by taking a selective approach to the two novels' multiple points of view in a way that managed to coherently and unconfusingly tell the story.
Sands is best-known for a short film called Inside that played at festivals. Since then, he's worked on several as-yet-unreleased scifi projects, including a "far future" action flick with Sony called Resurrection, as well as the scripts for Six Billion Dollar Man and an adaptation of David Brin's novel Startide Rising.
Sounds like Sands is all about science fiction, which is a good sign. But putting both Hyperion novels together into one film? Hard to imagine. All I can say is they'd better get some damn good designers to work on this one because Hyperion needs to look awesome. Give me good lightning trees and a cool-looking WorldWeb singularity network, and I might just pay the cost of admission.