It’s one of those days again, it seems. Shortly after we shared news on the status of the Wild Cards TV adaptation, George R.R. Martin posted his own update. The first was an item we had forgotten to post an update about, namely that just after we revealed that Sandkings was in development at Netflix, by sheer coincidence Collider had learned in an interview that director Gore Verbinski (Rango, Pirates of the Caribbean) was set to direct it, with screenwriter Dennis Kelly (Utopia) writing the script for the high-budget film adaptation of the famous, award-winning science fiction horror story.
George goes on to fill in some details on some other projects, some of which touch on things we recently revealed.
Screenshot from the 1995 Outer Limits adaptation of “Sandkings”. The “castle” features the face of Dr. Simon Kress, played by Beau Bridges in the episode.
About two weeks ago, we were the first to report that the long-gestating Wild Cards TV adaptation, originally set for Hulu, had moved to NBCUniversal’s Peacock. Now The Hollywood Reporter has filled in the blanks, providing details of what Hulu did with the project, why it moved from Hulu to Peacock, and what its current status is since the lead writer has moved on, and a new writer is currently being searched for.
Some salient quotes below:
Cover art by Brian Bolland for a re-release of the first edition.
Is A Song of Ice and Fire in development at someone not named HBO? Strangely, that may be the case from something we uncovered following yesterday’s post on some recent development updates.
This led us to some digging and and we discovered that Vince Gerardis’s new company Startling Inc. has an official website with a long, long list of various literary works that are in development at various studios, networks, and production companies. As an science fiction and fantasy fan, a lot of the titles are familiar—works by Robert Silverberg, David Eddings, Kim Stanley Robinsion, Larry Niven, Greg Bear, and more are all represented. But Three of these are of special interest to fans of George R.R. Martin: Wild Cards, Sandkings, and something titled A Song of Ice and Fire without HBO explicitly linked to it.
A fan-made ASoIaF logo from artist Ertaç Altınöz
In a new Not a Blog post titled “Writing, Reading, Writing”, GRRM has written from his cabin hideaway about his isolation during the global pandemic. In the course of being up there, his assistant captured two mice that they’ve now made into pets named Timmy and TomTom, and George notes they have not been too helpful in advising him on The Winds of Winter...
... but he actually has a deal to say about the progress he has made, even if he thinks he won’t be able to recapture the blazing rate of speed in which he wrote A Storm of Swords (which peaked at about 150 manuscript pages a month).
Here’s what he has to say:
“If nothing else, the enforced isolation has helped me write. I am spending long hours every day on THE WINDS OF WINTER, and making steady progress. I finished a new chapter yesterday, another one three days ago, another one the previous week. But no, this does not mean that the book will be finished tomorrow or published next week. It’s going to be a huge book, and I still have a long way to go. Please do not give any credence to any of the click-bait websites that like to parse every word of my posts as if they were papal encyclicals to divine hidden meanings.”
And below the fold, here’s some additional details that are slightly spoilerish in nature:
An official website for the Wild Cards superhero shared-world novels, whose origins lay way back in 1983 with a roleplaying game campaign that George R.R. Martin devised, has now been launched.
Of note are a number of initial blog posts from Martin and other members of the Wild Cards Consortium discussing various aspects of the shared world, from its inception and on down to recent days. It’s a good looking site, featuring a cover gallery, interviews, videos (including a 1988 recording of a Worldcon Wild Cards panel!), sample stories, and more.
The latest entry in the series is High Stakes, which was published this August.
Courtesy of Tor.com, Daniel Abraham’s original story set in the WIld Cards shared-world universe is now available on-line. “When We Were Heroes” features Curveball and Bugsy, two characters introduced in the “new” Wild Cards trilogy that began with 2008’s Inside Straight. Tor.com suggests that this is the first of several stories George R.R. Martin has commissioned in the wake of the success of Fort Freak.
In further news, over at “Not a Blog” GRRM has noted that the follow-up to Fort Freak, Lowball, is nearly done, and that the third novel in this trilogy—High Stakes—will be in progress immediately after Lowball has been delivered to the publisher.