It seems in the dark and frightening world of sci-fi franchise extensions and do-overs, they will all belong to J.J. Abrams. With feet planted both in “Star Trek” and “Star Wars,” it looks like Abrams is putting his name to another vintage era movie, and this time bringing it to the small screen.
Variety reports that Abrams’ Bad Robot will produce a remake of the 1973 movie “Westworld” (itself based on a Michael Crichton novel) for HBO, with none other than Jonathan “call me Jonah” Nolan to pen the script and direct the pilot, which the network has already committed to. Of course, fans already know that Abrams and Nolan are both behind the CBS series “Person Of Interest,” which heads into its third season this fall. So what’s their new gig all about?
The duo will be tackling the story of amusement robots run amok as “a dark odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the future of sin.” Heavy, bro. We presume going to TV is a pivot by producer Jerry Weintraub who has been trying to get this made forever. Over the years Tarsem Singh was attached briefly, it was offered to Quentin Tarantino who turned it down, and even Arnold Schwarzenegger kicked the tires to star before he became Governator. In 2011, WB said they still intended to remake it, but it looks like the parent-company-owned HBO will get a crack at it now.
How this will work as a TV series we’re curious to see, but HBO seems pretty pumped and the talent could certainly make it interesting and hell, we’d be up for a decent weekly sci-fi series. Fingers crossed.