Hollywood's taking on The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress again, after the first two tries melted away in Development Hell. Jose Molina (late of Firefly) had written a script a few years ago, but his name's nowhere to be seen on this incarnation.
Will Tinseltown mess it up, if indeed the project moves forward? It's a big, complicated story with a number of elements that are still mostly Big Science. Molina's script, a sympathetic treatment by a guy who knew the source material, was drastically simplified and featured an old-fashioned printing press for set dressing and a showdown battle with the Warden, so, yeah, I think we can count on it. If we're lucky, they'll get the look of the places right and maybe even the HOLMES IV, but I wouldn't expect more than that. Update: Expect less.
One of the biggest problems with efforts to put SF books on film is that as a general rule "movie" does not equal "novel." "Novella," maybe, and a short one at that. The best TV SF and fantasy programs got this right; many a classic Twilight Zone or Tales Of Tomorrow* episode is based on a short or even short-short story. The movies aim higher -- and nearly always fall short. Philip K. Dick's work makes it onscreen well -- changed, but it works. Past that, I can't think of any SF films-from-SF-stories that are really worth watching outside of Destination Moon -- and it's become a period piece.
* TOT is not up to TZ's standard. The sets are often hokey; the acting is frequently not of the highest caliber; the old kinescopes are rough. But it's almost the only other place you'll find classic SF from the likes of Kornbluth and Sturgeon on the screen.
YANKEE RADIO TOOL KIT, #106
4 weeks ago