Thursday, August 21, 2008

Devil May Care 'Too Old' For Big Screen?

From WENN:

Film bosses have turned down the chance to adapt the latest James Bond book for the big screen - because its plot is too old-fashioned.

Devil May Care was written by British novelist Sebastian Faulks to commemorate Bond creator Ian Fleming's centenary this year.

Faulks confirmed in May that Eon Productions were considering turning the book into a movie - but the plans have since been shelved.

Bond producer Barbara Broccoli says, "Devil May Care is a period book which is set in the 1960s and it really wouldn't fit as one of the films that Eon has been producing recently."

Excuse me, but several Bond movies made after Ian Fleming's death were adapted on material set and published in the 1950s and early 60s—For Your Eyes Only, Octopussy, A View to a Kill, The Living Daylights, Licence to Kill, Casino Royale.


John Dishon said...

They were probably just being polite because they didn't want to admit that Devil May Care just isn't that good.

Then again, none of the continuation novels have been adapted to film. EON seems to just take elements from said books and incorporate them into the movies.

Gerald So said...

Could be, John, but as you say, an adaptation can use certain elements and discard others. In the case of Devil May Care, the idea of Bond returning to action after an enforced medical leave is worth exploring, I think.

It's true the book's image of an older Bond doesn't fit the movies' current reboot, but a similar leave could take place in the wake of Bond's losing Vesper in the 2006 Casino Royale.

The notion that Faulks's book isn't good enough doesn't wash. Some of Fleming's worst books and stories were made into decent movies, and after Quantum of Solace, they will have about run out of original Fleming material.

john dishon said...

Yes, but Faulks is not the only continuation novelist. Kingsley Amis' Colonel Sun is generally regarded as the best of the continuation novels. EON could go there. Raymond Benson has some novels that would be easily film-able, such as Ten Minus Zero or High Time to Kill.

Quality issues aside, Devil May Care is too pastiche (I think that's the word I'm looking for). There are many allusions to past Bond exploits, which, unfortunately for DMC, makes it a lot like Die Another Day. And we don't need another one of those.

Gerald So said...

I'm not saying Faulks's book is better than Amis's, Gardner's, or Benson's, just that the idea the plot is too "old-fashioned" doesn't compute. More Bond movies have been made than there were Bond books for a while now. Why haven't any of the continuation books been adapted? The only reason that makes sense is that EON wants to stay away from them.