Sci-fi buffs will remember the announcement that came back in July about Warner Brothers developing an adaptation of the first book in Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series. At the time, it seemed this might have been a part of an emerging trend in Hollywood this year to get back to “thinking man’s science-fiction”, but alas, all hope of this being a deep, intellectual film has now vanished with the announcement of a director for the project. The job has fallen to blockbuster helmer Roland Emmerich (10,000 B.C., The Day After Tomorrow, Independence Day). Why on earth would they choose a guy who is known for explosions and special effects to direct a story with no action in it?
According to Variety, the reason that the project has changed gears is because it has also changed hands. Apparently Fox sunk some development money into this project at one point, so Warner Brothers was forced to auction off the rights to avoid a repeat of the painful Watchmen lawsuit. In the end, it lead to a bidding war with Sony swooping in and stealing the rights out from under them. The naming of Emmerich as director is made all the more upsetting by the fact that the WB’s top choice was Alex Proyas (Dark City, I, Robot). Sure I, Robot wasn’t the best Asimov adaptation ever put to celluloid, but I certainly have more confidence in him than Roland Emmerich. Thoughts?