Foundation and Hollywood

There’s a Foundation movie in the works. It’s just gone into pre-production.

I love the Foundation series. It’s an intricate and intelligent piece of fiction. And as much as I would like to see it become a better known part of the public consciousness, I really have to say that a movie is the worst way to go about it. With that said, some films that would have been expected to translate poorly have turned out relatively well. The Watchmen, for instance, was excellently done (until the ending where they essentially removed the moral quandary that defined the comic). 

But I can’t find hope here for this. And that’s because of this quote from the article. 

Foundation is being directed by Roland Emmerich who announced last year that the film would be 3D and contains lots of CGI elements.

Ok. I can see the CGI: it’s not like it’d be easy to use location shots to show off the incredible city-planet of Trantor, etc. This is a proper sci-fi future novel we’re talking about, after all. But 3d? Really? What’s going to come flying out at me, Hari Seldon’s hologram as he offers the pre-recorded prophecy? The math of Psychohistory as he and Gaal Dornick are on trial and show the truth of the fall of the Empire? Or maybe they’re going to condense novels and the Mule’s nose will poke out of the screen, gangly as he’s supposed to be?

If you look at it in an abstract way, Foundation is a grand adventure of sorts. But it doesn’t have much in the way of action, and shouldn’t need anything to pop out of the screen. The journey is largely psychological. Putting that in 3d is difficult to imagine, and needless to say it instead gives the impression that it’s going to be re-written as an action flick. It wouldn’t be the first time. And that’s rather terrifying. 

As a miniseries, it could work out much better, I think. It’s not really difficult to imagine, given that the early works were initially a series of short stories. And with the insane success of a Game of Thrones, surely that should be an option for Foundation too.

Meanwhile, how many times have I posted about being concerned over how a movie will turn out? I should just set up a template or something….