The Hubris! Ridley Scott Producing 2001: A Space Odyssey Sequel
It's going to go 100% failure in 72 hours.
Last month Syfy’s new programming chief promised that the network would be returning to its roots by attempting to recapture the network’s pre-name-change “serious tone,” and, well, attempting a sequel to one of the most iconic films ever is one way to do that, I guess. Memories of shark-based weather phenomena fading… fading…
According to/Film, Syfy has ordered a TV miniseries adaptation of 3001: The Final Odyssey, the fourth book in Arthur C. Clarke’s Space Odyssey series. In the novel, 3001‘s protagonist is the astronaut killed by Hal-9000 in 2001. Here’s the book cover’s plot synopsis, courtesy of /Film:
One thousand years after the Jupiter mission to explore the mysterious Monolith had been destroyed, after Dave Bowman was transformed into the Star Child, Frank Poole drifted in space, frozen and forgotten, leaving the supercomputer HAL inoperable. But now Poole has returned to life, awakening in a world far different from the one he left behind–and just as the Monolith may be stirring once again…
In a story that spans over thirty years, Poole returns to Earth and discovers that major advancements have been made during his 1,000-year hibernation: in addition to sinister-sounding computerized BrainCaps, Wikipedia says future Earth also boasts “genetically-engineered dinosaur servants.” (Goddamit, Syfy, you haven’t changed at all, have you?)
In a press release, Scott shared his excitement about adding to the prestigious Space Odyssey franchise:
I have always been a fan of Clarke’s extraordinary series, and certainly Kubrick’s adaptation of 2001. I am thrilled to be part of bringing that legacy to audiences and continuing the great cinematic tradition that this story and its creators deserve.
3001 will be adapted for Syfy by Stuart Beattie (I, Frankenstein; G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra; ouch).
Although I’m dubious that attempting to add to such an incredibly well-respected franchise will do anything to salvage Syfy’s reputation (especially with this creative team), there’s no doubt that the 3001 novel is ripe for some sort of adaptation. And hey, at least we can count on SyFy for some reliably ridiculously genetically-engineered dinosaur servants, right? If there aren’t several establishing shots of a cravat-wearing T-Rex butler stomping past the monolith, then I don’t know what.