Neuromancer is to cyberpunk as Akira is to anime/manga. Seriously. It's not the first cyberpunk novel but many consider it to be the best. The granddaddy of cyberpunk could finally be ready to make the transition to the movie screen. William Gibson's revered sci-fi text is being shopped at the American Film Market by producer Peter Hoffman where he's reportedly telling distributors that Bruce Willis is attached. Calls to CAA have revealed that Willis hasn't fully committed to the project but is indeed reading the script. Willis is reportedly up for the role of former military officer, Armitage.
Synopsis:The book centers on Case, a former computer hacker who makes his living by breaking into security systems. Caught stealing from his employers, Case is rendered physically unable to withstand the rigors of access to the worldwide computer net. Unable to work, he welcomes suicidal thoughts, entering into deals that can only go bad. Willing to do anything for the chance to work again, he turns to a mysterious figure named Armitage, and by so doing begins a journey out of the gutters of 21st century Tokyo and into an ever-expanding world of multinational intrigue. Armitage pays off Case's debts, repairs his neural damage, and places him under the protection of Molly, a professional killer. As Case progresses through his assignments with Molly and a range of others enlisted by Armitage, he becomes aware of larger forces working to control his activities. Ultimately, Case realizes that it is Neuromancer, a far-reaching artificial intelligence, that he has been working for. The opus ends with Case's realization that he has been controlled by the very technology he uses.
Some highlights of Neuromancer:
-Coined the term "cyberspace" and many theorize that it influenced the creation of the internet
- It's the first winner of the science-fiction "triple crown" — the Nebula Award, the Philip K. Dick Award, and the Hugo Award.
-In 1989, Epic Comics published a 48-page graphic novel version by Tom de Haven and Bruce Jensen.
-You can see trace influences of Neuromancer in such films as the Terminator franchise, Avatar, the Matrix trilogy and Inception.
Vincenzo Natali, director of Cube and Splice, is attached to direct and has also written the screenplay. Pre-production is underway and the film is estimated to have a budget of $60 million. Michael Ryan and Guy Collins are selling the film through their banner GFM Films. The producers are Hoffman and Jay Firestone.
So, are you intrigued by a Neuromancer film or do you believe steampunk where it's at and cyberpunk is now passé? Sound off in the comments section below.
Neuromancer is a 1984 novel by William Gibson, a seminal work in the cyberpunk genre and the first winner of the science-fiction "triple crown" — the Nebula Award, the Philip K. Dick Award, and the Hugo Award. It was Gibson's debut novel and the beginning of the Sprawl trilogy. The novel tells the story of a washed-up computer hacker hired by a mysterious employer to pull off the ultimate hack.
There have been several unsuccessful initial attempts at film adaptations of Neuromancer, with drafts of scripts written by British director Chris Cunningham and Chuck Russel. The box packaging for the video game adaptation had even carried the promotional mention for a major motion picture to come from "Cabana Boy Productions." None of these projects have come to fruition, though William Gibson has stated his belief that Cunningham is the only director with a chance of doing the film right.
In May 2007 reports emerged that a film was in the works, with Joseph Kahn (director of Torque) in line to direct and Milla Jovovich in the lead role. In May 2010 this story was supplanted with news that Vincenzo Natali, director of Cube and Splice, had taken over directing duties and would rewrite the screenplay. In March 2011, with the news that Seven Arts and GFM Films would be merging their distribution operations, it was announced that the joint venture would be purchasing the rights to Neuromancer under Vincenzo Natali's direction at the upcoming Cannes Film Festival. Natali's film went into pre-production in May 2011, and filming is expected to begin in 2012 with a budget of $60 million.