Tuesday, April 8, 2008

L. E. Modesitt, Jr.'s "Flash"

L. E. Modesitt, Jr. is the bestselling author of over forty novels encompassing two science fiction series and three fantasy series, as well as several other novels in the science fiction genre.

Here he develops some ideas about the cast and director for a film adaptation of his 2005 novel, Flash, which "delves into the insidious relationship between science, advertising, and politics."
I normally don’t consider who might star if one of my books were made into a movie, because, based on an experience some ten years ago, when a most notable Hollywood director showed an interest in one of my books – and then decided against going further because, despite a high level of destruction, the underlying story was “too complex,” i.e., it actually had significant moral dimensions and questions – it became apparent that whether a book gets to the screen is a form of creative lottery.

Most likely, the book of mine most structurally conducive to being made into a movie, thus far, at least, is Flash, a PI/consultant thriller set three centuries in the future, which features one Jonat deVrai, a former Marine officer who has turned his hand to consulting and analysis of media influence and who is asked to investigate and analyze the use of a new high-tech approach to media in political campaigns. Needless to say, once he discovers what is really happening, everything in his life becomes a target – his occupation, his family, and himself.

Personally, I’d like to see Clive Owen as Jonat deVrai, because he can show integrity in a role, while still holding to a certain grittiness and understanding of just how much grunt-work goes on behind a façade of effortlessness. For Jonat’s very brilliant and capable sister, Aliora, my first choice would be Keira Knightley. For her husband Dierk, a solid man with a quietly humorous side, I’d love to have Kevin Kline. For Paula, the police cydroid who becomes all too human, I’d choose Cate Blanchett. Blanchett has the ability to be whatever role she takes, and she can look so totally different in each role. For Stacia Mydra, the calculating and highly intelligent multilateral director-general [who is the only one of deVrai’s opponents who survives], I’d like to see Meryl Streep, playing the role along the lines she did in The Devil Wears Prada. My second choice would be Kristin Scott Thomas, although she’d certainly take the role in a different direction.

As for directors, my first choice would have been Robert Altman, but given the fact that he’s no longer available, and the fact that the book is somewhat cynical about politics, either Robert Redford or Clint Eastwood would do a good job.

Now… all this is certainly highly improbable, since I doubt any director could afford such a cast, but since we are talking speculative fiction… and this is all highly speculative… why not?
Learn more about the author and his many books at L. E. Modesitt, Jr.'s website.

--Marshal Zeringue