The buzz leading up to X-Men Origins: Wolverine was toxic. Reports of huge creative differences didn’t help, but things got worse when the film leaked online. After a rocky production, it wasn’t very surprising when the film turned out to be a major disappointment. Director Gavin Hood has done fine work since then, like Ender’s Game and Eye in the Sky, but X-Men Origins: Wolverine sticks out of his filmography like a sore thumb, for a variety of reasons.
The director hasn’t said too much about the film in the past, but now he’s opened up a little about his experience on the 2009 comic book movie.
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I won’t go into full-on Ender’s Game spoilers here above the fold, but many have wondered whether or not the film would earn a sequel, and if so how the story would work out. See, the film Ender’s Game retains the basic ending of the original novel by Orson Scott Card, and that leads into a more complex and stranger sequel called Speaker for the Dead.
Trouble is, that novel takes place many years after Ender’s Game. The actors from this season’s film wouldn’t be able to make the jump without extensive reworking of the story.
But Card is penning another story, called Fleet School, which is planned as the first of a set of new books that will act as direct chronological sequels to Ender’s Game. Given the way things work, we’re more likely to see an adaptation of Fleet School than of Speaker for the Dead. More info follows. Read More »
Posted on Friday, November 1st, 2013 by David Chen
It is difficult to believe that a big-budget version of Ender’s Game is finally going to be playing at your local multiplex this weekend. It’s taken 28 years for a film to finally be made based upon the beloved book. After many, many aborted attempts, false starts, and different scripts, I questioned whether the version of the film we ended up with would be any good. Does it live up to the promise of the book? Is it as generic as its trailers might imply? Is it at all coherent in its attempt to tell the story of a book that is hundreds of pages long?
After the jump, I share my thoughts on the film in under 2 minutes.
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Ender’s Game fans have waited decades to see Orson Scott Card’s classic sci-fi film on screen. Now it’s less than two weeks away. Gavin Hood‘s adaptation, starring Asa Butterfield, Hailee Steinfeld, Ben Kingsley, Viola Davis, Abigail Breslin and Harrison Ford, opens November 1. The film features beautiful visual effects and plenty of practical effects as well, specifically in the highly-anticipated zero gravity battle room scenes.
You’ll see how they built the battle room, and lots more, in this new visual effects video called Building Ender’s World. Check it out below. Read More »
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When meeting Harrison Ford isn’t the highlight of your day, that’s a day for the ages. On the New Orleans set of Ender’s Game, the man who played Han Solo, Indiana Jones and Rick Deckard was there and I shook his hand. Incredibly, though, that moment was topped when I realized director Gavin Hood had figured out a way to make kids fly in zero gravity.
In Orson Scott Card’s sci-fi masterpiece Ender’s Game, a young boy named Ender leaves Earth and enters Battle School to train for an inevitable attack from an alien race called the Formics. They train in a zero gravity space called the Battle Room where dozens of pre-teen boys and girls zip and float around in formation, blasting each other with guns. It’s here that Ender learns to be a great leader and where the action of Ender’s Game hinges.
What I found out on May 17, 2012 – the 59th day of a 70 day shoot – was that Hood not only pulled off these sequences, he’s pulled them off with the actual actors and practical effects. A whole new way of basically puppeteering actors to look like they’re in zero gravity had to be invented to do this, but with the polish of digital effects Hood and his team have realized the dreams of every single Ender’s Game out there.
After the jump, read our set visit which includes a video blog and 30 things I learned on the set of Ender’s Game about the production origins, the Battle Room and more. Read More »
Make no mistake, there’s a lot of action in Ender’s Game. In the book, young kids fly around in zero gravity blasting each other with guns to simulate war strategy. Later, they man what’s basically the universe’s largest video game simulation to do the same thing. Plus, the whole reason the International Fleet is recruiting young kids like Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield) is because an alien race referred to as the Buggers once decimated the Planet Earth. All of that chaos is surely in Gavin Hood‘s film and you’ll see a lot of it in this brand new trailer.
However, while this trailer shows an action-packed thrill ride, at its heart, Ender’s Game is not that. It’s the story of one boy’s struggle with the immense pressure of being expected to literally save the world. Check out the new trailer, marvel at its energy and effects but know that, most likely, the movie within is something a bit smaller and more visceral. Read More »
Posted on Friday, August 2nd, 2013 by Angie Han
A cinematic adaptation of Ender’s Game has been in development for so long, plenty of fans figured they’d never actually get to see the sci-fi classic come to life. But not only has it come together for real this time, the premiere date is now just around the corner. Close enough that we have today what’s being called the final poster for the movie.
Asa Butterfield stars as brilliant young Ender, who’s recruited by the military to help protect the planet against an alien race called the Formics. Much of his training takes place in the form of games, which is where the title comes from. But the tagline for the movie warns that “This is not a game.” Uh, so which is it? See the new artwork for yourself after the jump.
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While I’d like to say the highlight of Thursday’s San Diego Comic-Con panel for Gavin Hood‘s Ender’s Game was new footage from the film, that would be a falsity. The footage – a new trailer that sells the movie as an epic action extravaganza – was suitably impressive, even if it’s not exactly representative of the actual film. The real highlight was the second Comic-Con appearance of iconic actor Harrison Ford.
Ford, who first graced Comic-Con’s Hall H to promote Cowboys and Aliens, returned for Ender’s Game and good-naturedly rolled with punches thrown at him by moderator Chris Hardwick, writer/director Gavin Hood and fans who asked questions like, “What would Han Solo and Indiana Jones say to each other if they met?” Read more about the panel, and the footage, below. Read More »
Posted on Tuesday, July 9th, 2013 by Angie Han
Orson Scott Card is best known for his sci-fi writing, but over the years he’s also attracted a lot of attention for his staunchly conservative political views. Among other things, he’s been vocal about his opposition to same-sex marriage — and as public opinion evolves on that issue, Card’s position is increasingly becoming a problem.
Earlier this year, DC Comics shelved a planned Superman book after Card’s involvement sparked a public backlash. Now, the LGBT group Geeks Out is calling for a boycott of Ender’s Game, Gavin Hood‘s film based on Card’s classic novel. In an effort to address the controversy, Card himself has spoken out declaring the gay marriage issue “moot” and asking for “tolerance” of his beliefs. Read his comments after the jump.
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The Ender’s Game viral site I.F. Sentinel has been updated to include three brand new posters. They’re propaganda posters for the International Fleet, and the images take us through the three stages of their approach. Those just so happen to be three major stages of the film. First is fear, and a poster promising “The Next Invasion Is Imminent” covers that. Second is hope, asking us to “Join the Next Generation of Heroes.” Third is duty, as an image of Battle School (above) lets us all know we need to “Protect Earth.”
“Protect Earth” from what exactly? Well in the November 1 film, directed by Gavin Hood, Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield) is recruited to train in Battle School to help the human race defeat the evil Buggers, which are exactly what the name sounds like: bugs. Check out the three new posters below. Read More »