szilard

The Wheel of Time Will Be Adapted as a TV Series

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On 11/8/2017 at 9:29 AM, mdnyttokr said:

I have a VERY tenuous and indirect connection to... someone at Sony Pictures Television Studios (more of a "I know someone who knows someone"), and that person is bringing this monster of a show to television.  Acknowledging that, you can choose to believe me or not.  This probably isn't even really news.

 

 

I knew someone who worked at Newline when they were doing the Lord of the Rings movies -- a lot of what he told me was covered up by PR but came out later in on the DVD's, making of books etc. about various setbacks and problems. I knew the cast before it was announced and that Stuart Townsend had left and a lot of details, he saw the "sizzle reel" before it played at Cannes and described it to me etc. At the time I thought, "Well, he's kind of a peripheral acquaintance, I don't know if any of this is accurate." Turns out it was all factual! So, keep that connection :) You never know! 

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That information seems in line with what we know. Sony are taking the project seriously - far more seriously than Dark Tower, thankfully - but they have not joined forces with a studio/network production partner yet, so that is the biggest problem to be overcome.

 

My understanding is that, frustratingly, Sony were very close to signing a deal with Amazon but Amazon then asked for a delay. During that time the Lord of the Rings prequel project came up and Amazon went with that instead. Them making Wheel of Time as well as LotR is unlikely, as I understand it, so the WoT project went back out to the networks. This has caused problems because a lot of the other studios have signed up other fantasy projects in the meantime.

 

So to recap, HBO are out because of GoT and the spin-off project; Showtime are out because of the Kingkiller Chronicle prequel project; Netflix are probably out because of The Witcher; AMC likely won't provide a big enough budget; Starz are less likely to commit because of their immense expenditure on American Gods and Outlander; Paramount/Spike already have Shannara; Amazon have the Lord of the Rings series; SyFy don't have enough money (they had to cancel Dark Matter to afford Nightflyers) and so forth.

 

There are some interesting options on the table. Apple TV really need a big flagship project to spearhead their invasion of the TV space and don't have one yet. Netflix may feel that the relative small scale of The Witcher means they have scope and time for a bigger project as well. FX are a pretty good possibility, especially now they've been bought by Disney. Disney could also decide that WoT is a good match for Hulu or their new adult streaming service launching in 2019 (with a new Marvel show and the first-ever Star Wars live action TV series). Starz may decide to plump for a third big series, especially with American Gods' future in doubt. We may also see CBS All Access getting in on the act. They have deep pockets but they also need more content for the streaming service: Star Trek Discovery is popular but one show isn't going to keep interest going.

 

Another interesting piece of information: Sony have been quietly developing a TV series based on Joe Abercrombie's First Law fantasy seriesFirst Law is much darker and grimmer than WoT, so this may be a sign that Sony are interested in developing multiple fantasy projects with different focuses. But there must be a concern that if First Law moves forward, their focus may shift to that. I don't believe that's likely, as WoT was far more expensive (eight figures for the rights) and has a far higher global profile, but it may be something worth bearing in mind.

 

On the plus side, WoT showrunner Rafe Judkins has tweeted that he is working on the books for the adaptation, which may be a sign that something is going on behind the scenes.

 

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One more thing. I was sent a few pictures of GOT this afternoon, and I had to ask the sender that who are these people, because I had no idea that 30+ years old actors are playing the teens.

 

There were no 30+ actors playing the teens. The oldest age difference I believe were Kit Harington and Richard Madden, who were both 23, playing 14-year-olds who'd been canonically aged up to around 18 in the show. Of course, the show has been on the air for 7 years so Harington is 30 now, but they explain that in the show by having the series cover a lot longer period of time than the books.

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who were both 23, playing 14-year-olds who'd been canonically aged up to around 18 in the show. Of course, the show has been on the air for 7 years so Harington is 30 now, but they explain that in the show by having the series cover a lot longer period of time than the books.

 

In other words: it's a joke-adaptation.

 

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On the plus side, WoT showrunner Rafe Judkins has tweeted that he is working on the books for the adaptation, which may be a sign that something is going on behind the scenes.

 

I hope that he will not pull a Carmen http://news.trust.org/item/20180103181731-3nm1m/

 

But I really don't understand this new 'development'. Without a studio/network, how can he do anything? He cannot plan anything without knowing the finacial backgrounds etc. And why now? What's he done so far? Is he working totally alone? Or there's a team? Judging by the condition of the books he went to a bookstore and bought a stripped book a few days ago and that's it...

 

Sony truly does take things seriously... 

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In other words: it's a joke-adaptation.

 

 

Because they can't stop the actors ageing? That's going to be a problem for WoT. In fact, even moreso. It's possible to very likely that the show will have 18 month gaps between seasons assuming a high production quality. Assuming 7 seasons, it'll possibly take 10-11 years to get the show done. So any actors they start with in their late teens or early twenties will be in the late twenties or early thirties by the time it's done. There's no realistic way around that.

 

 

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But I really don't understand this new 'development'. Without a studio/network, how can he do anything? He cannot plan anything without knowing the finacial backgrounds etc. And why now? What's he done so far? Is he working totally alone? Or there's a team? Judging by the condition of the books he went to a bookstore and bought a stripped book a few days ago and that's it...

 

 

Sony have been talking about making their shows themselves and then selling the finished product to networks, rather than teaming with a network in the first place. That would make sense as they nearly did that for the Dark Tower TV series, so WoT would be a logical way of handling the situation. I know Sony felt burned on their experiences working alongside AMC on Breaking Bad which led them to that idea, but then again their experience on Better Call Saul has been a lot better so they might have retreated from the idea. But certainly as part of the process of selling the show to a network, they'll need completed scripts, a series bible, an outline for the series overall, notes on the characters etc.

 

The books I believe are his original paperbacks from the early 1990s. I think it's his way of showing he's been a WoT fan for twenty plus years and is old-skool (i.e. he didn't hear about the books five minutes before he was asked to helm he project).

 

His experience so far has been in network TV: My Own Worst EnemyChuckHemlock Grove and, most recently, Agents of SHIELD (fortunately since it stopped being unwatchable). Not an outstanding CV but not an embarrassing one either.

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Nice to finally hear some more info even if it is minor. I like the idea of Starz seeing as how they seem to have done a great job with Outlander.

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On 1/12/2018 at 12:54 PM, Werthead said:

Because they can't stop the actors ageing? That's going to be a problem for WoT. In fact, even moreso. It's possible to very likely that the show will have 18 month gaps between seasons assuming a high production quality. Assuming 7 seasons, it'll possibly take 10-11 years to get the show done. So any actors they start with in their late teens or early twenties will be in the late twenties or early thirties by the time it's done. There's no realistic way around that.

We're talking about a series where magic is possible.  And as a counterpoint: NCIS.

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On 2018. január 12. at 8:54 PM, Werthead said:

Because they can't stop the actors ageing? That's going to be a problem for WoT. In fact, even moreso. It's possible to very likely that the show will have 18 month gaps between seasons assuming a high production quality. Assuming 7 seasons, it'll possibly take 10-11 years to get the show done. So any actors they start with in their late teens or early twenties will be in the late twenties or early thirties by the time it's done. There's no realistic way around that.

 

No, you misunderstood. The concept is that: inexperienced kids (GOT), teens (WOT) are getting in serious trouble, and they have to survive deadly dangers. That's why RJ severed Tam into Tam and Rand, becuse his story does not work with older (traveled) people, does not work with drawn-out storylines. Randland is near its 'end': hey, son, you are our saviour now, you've got 2 years, no more.

 

7 seasons are too much: it looks like fans only want to know 'the ending' and going forward another horizons.

 

On 2018. január 12. at 8:54 PM, Werthead said:

. I think it's his way of showing he's been a WoT fan for twenty plus years and is old-skool (i.e. he didn't hear about the books five minutes before he was asked to helm he project).

 

Look, Sanderson played the same: I'm such a huge fan but I did not touch the books for decades. I will re-read them,ah, they are too long, will not do it, I will read Jordan's notes, ah, they too complex, too cryptic, I will not read them. It did not matter at all in the end because Sanderson's is not an author (not even a writer), he's just a printing machine. Of course, nobody should have write any fan fiction, but we all know, it's all about the benjamins.

 

Back to guy (what's his name? nevermind): we don't need this kind of emotional statement, because we are talking about an adaptation. A faithful adaptation, I hope. Cuaron still does not know that Harry Potter is a person or a name of a food, and, despite being such an ignoramus, he gave us the best HP adaptation, because he had artistic vision. He (like P. Jackson) had interesting works behind his back before POA. (Azkaban is still his best film so far.)

 

And we haven't heard anything positive about this guy.

 

And without hard numbers,

 

40 million, 8 episodes, 42 min.?

40 million, 20 episodes, 42 min.?

70 million, 8 episodes, 50 min ? etc

 

is really hard planning anything, because every little modification brings another modification in the screenplay, in the production design, in the schedule, in the locations etc

 

They think that all the fans of WOT will watch anything but that is not true. Who will be there at the premiere from the original fans? Will we be divided, like fans of GOT?

 

(And a few words on GOT: it is astonishing (?) to see that (hardcore) readers hate the show with a passion. I assume that you've read all the posts in Game of Thrones: The HBO TV Series (Westeros - I use this site as an example despite being now one of the lesser sites, because that was  t h e  ASOIAF site many, many, many years ago), so you know as well that many of them gave upon the series during even in S1-S2-S3 (not to mention the last two seasons), and now only the newcomers love the show. This is just a little hyperbole. Of course, who cares about a handful of old dinousaurs, when HBO is bathing in money?
And now the fans are totally divided between the book series (the so-called snobs, I will not use the stronger word) and the tv series (the so-called idiots). And many of the newcomers will never read the books. )

 

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@Werthead

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 What’s your take on Rafe being picked to rewrite the Uncharted movie? Good, bad or means nothing in regards to WoT?


 

 

At this stage, largely irrelevant. Until Sony confirm their partnership with a network (or go it alone), there's probably not much for him to do on WoT (I assume a pilot script was written ages ago). Benioff and Weiss did this on GoT, after writing the pilot script they broke off and did other things for a while (like working on the Halo movie that never got made) until HBO greenlit GoT and they snapped back to that. They even wrote some movie treatments and other things whilst working on GoT, and have started development work on another HBO series.

 

Uncharted has also been in development for years with multiple writers and script drafts attached, so this will be less of a writing from scratch job than another pass at a pre-existing draft. Much less time-consuming. Depending on your workload, a scriptwriter could do it in a week or two.

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That we all want? None. Sony can do quality, but they may be hamstrung by budget restrictions depending on which network picks up the show. Storywise, even with an unlimited budget, Rafe will make changes and not everyone will be happy with his creative decisions. All we can hope for is something that is entertaining, doesn’t look like crap and somewhat resembles the story we love.

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On 1/29/2018 at 2:01 PM, Occams whiskey bottle said:

With all the issues that this series has had with getting developed what are the chances that we get the quality and story that we all want? 

 

Zero. (It looks like the WOT-curse is still alive.)

 

The owner of the rights chose a little fish (Sony), who will team up with an even smaller fish (probably AMC), then they chose a not too talented showrunner.

 

They will not pump money into the first season, and without money, adapting WOT to the small screen is meaningless.

 

But the most important thing is the new readers. Many people will pick up the books, hopefully, so, in the long run we will lose nothing.

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AMC has done wonderful things without pissing away money. I don't think they'll do it here as some of the ppl involved are shady as hell and it hurts them little to shelve this thing for a more profitable time in the never never. But I love just about everything AMC does so that's not the dealbreaker.

 

as for getting something that gives all of us what we want... lol... of course zero, we don't all want the same things and a lot of us seem to want a verbatim screen play from the books. I don't but people do.

 

of course we will always have the books and I don't care if no one else ever reads them because I did, and people I know did, and that's good enough for me.  We lose nothing no matter what happens. Unless we get a cut of the publication profits which we don't so... ya.

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21 hours ago, Mrs. Cindy Gill said:

 But I love just about everything AMC does so that's not the dealbreaker.

 

What do you love about them? I hear nothing but bad things.

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On 2/2/2018 at 8:57 AM, szilard said:

 

Goldeneyes! Lord Perrin! Goldeneyes!

 

Your opinion? (The first minute does not fit to Perrin's personality.)

 

Not a fan of the confederacy and unable to transfer the scene into my feelings about the books. Also looked like a long time killer of a scene that meant nothing good to me so. Ya. 

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3 minutes ago, Mrs. Cindy Gill said:

Not a fan of the confederacy and unable to transfer the scene into my feelings about the books. Also looked like a long time killer of a scene that meant nothing good to me so. Ya. 

That kinda fits into what I think of the final Dragon's Peace. It's more of a compromise of the Constitution than an international peace.

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Amazon just picked up a Conan TV show, which suggests that they may be open to helming more than one fantasy show at a time. Although of course now that means they need to be willing to work on three simultaneously for WoT to have a shot.

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On 2/3/2018 at 9:00 PM, Mrs. Cindy Gill said:

Not a fan of the confederacy and unable to transfer the scene into my feelings about the books. Also looked like a long time killer of a scene that meant nothing good to me so. Ya. 

 

Irrelevant.

 

I would totally remove Perrin from the tv series (I think it's a good thing that I have zero control in this matter), but everybody, I mean around me, wants to see a 'similar' scene where 'he becomes a real leader'. (Plus seeing the banner of Manetheren.)

 

Could you post something from a movie or a tv series which can describe/visualise your feelings about the books?

 

When I see Nastassja Kinski in In weiter Ferne, so nah! (Faraway, So Close!), I see Nyn. I mean only in that scene, 'I do not like her face'. Maybe I should post this into the casting thread.

 

(1993 was not a bad year at all: Trois couleurs : Bleu, Trois couleurs : Bleu, Trois couleurs : Bleu, Short Cuts, A Perfect World, In the Name of the Father, JP (falling apart in the last 30 minutes), The Fugitive, Philadelphia (some parts feel really dated now), Untamed Heart,  Schindler's List - read the book, forget the film )

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No, it's not irrelevant. I couldn't find inspiration in the triumph of the will for the same reasons.

 

no, I can't really post anything specific but in general, somewhere between the lord of the rings and game of thrones I guess.

 

and of course Perrin doesn't get left out of any series or film if any is ever done and I'm still not holding my breath.  Perrin was the author, that's how Jordan put himself in the story. And there will be 3 arcs at least for each of the boys and maybe one or two for the girls but given the general misogyny of the industry maybe not.

 

again, I don't see this happening and like you I have no say. Just my opinion.

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Couple things:

 

First, Hi everyone! I'm new. My name's Riley! I figured it wouldn't hurt to use my real name in my username here since we're gonna have CIVIL DISCUSSIONS RIGHT?? *cough cough*

 

Second, I wanna throw my two cents in here:

 

I think all of us need to find a balance here. Some of you are very excited and positive about this project, while some of you are extremely negative and doubtful that it can be pulled off. However, I think we can take a balanced approach to looking at this thing by looking at a few key ideas that are inevitable.

 

1. They're going to streamline. They HAVE to. Certain things that can be described in a book or in an audiobook simply DO NOT translate to a visual medium. Changes will have to be made and we have to be willing to make concessions.

 

2. Some of you have discussed that the seasons should be a book each. This is stupid. What takes paragraphs or pages to describe and show in a book can be shown on a SCREEN in about a minute or less. This happens a lot in WoT, so that chops the books way down. Theoretically, you could fit the first trilogy into the first season or two. Additionally, what tends to beef up the books is that RJ would spend chapters upon chapters on one character and then cut to another and spend further chapters describing another character's adventures, all of which happens at the same time. With a visual medium, this is unnecessary. You can cut and edit to show things happening to different characters at the same time, which further cuts the books down. All in all, they COULD do the show in 8 seasons. (I'd prefer more, but I'm not the one in charge)

 

Because of the things I just described, I am extremely excited for this project. However, I am also reasonably apprehensive. Do I think they got the absolute best talents to head this show? No, I really don't. Sure Rafe may be responsible for some of the great episodes of AoS, but he's never handled anything this dense before. That has me nervous. 

 

Also, I'm sorry, but to call Sony a "little fish" and to call AMC an "even litter fish" is just.....I'm sorry, that's just ignorant (not to mention dumb).  

Edited by this_is_riley

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