Ridley Scott Pushing Ahead With The Forever War, Recruits Dante Harper To Adapt Joe Haldeman’s Sci-Fi Classic

Dante Harper is the big name in large scale sci-fi movies right now. His adaptation of All You Need Is Kill has been filming in the UK; he was tapped to write Gareth Edwards’ Robot Movie, Forever; and now Ridley Scott has selected him to script The Forever War, from Joe Haldeman’s classic sci-fi novel.

Deadline’s piece doesn’t mention it but there was already a script in the file from Scott’s Blade Runner collaborator David Webb Peoples. Haldeman had called that “the fourth rewrite.”

Which at least speaks to Scott’s persistence. He’s been after this one for a quarter of a decade, and was particularly encouraged by the success of Avatar to give it a crack. This story, he says, will need some of that same tech.

Here’s how the book is blurbed on Amazon:

The Earth’s leaders have drawn a line in the interstellar sand – despite the fact that the fierce alien enemy they would oppose is inscrutable, unconquerable, and very far away.

A reluctant conscript drafted into an elite Military unit, Private William Mandella has been propelled through space and time to fight in the distant thousand-year conflict; to perform his duties and do whatever it takes to survive the ordeal and return home.

But “home” may be even more terrifying than battle, because, thanks to the time dilation caused by space travel, Mandella is aging months while the Earth he left behind is aging centuries…

It’s a great book, and some of its thematic and philosophical ideas are apparent from that precis. Those who have read it will also know the scope for big-scale action sequences and cosmic spectacle. The potential is here for a huge tentpole that also packs character and smarts.

Just… well, just like there was with Prometheus. Gulp.


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