Ender's Game (film)
|Directed by||Gavin Hood|
|Screenplay by||Gavin Hood|
|Based on||Ender's Game
by Orson Scott Card
|Music by||Steve Jablonsky|
|Editing by||Zach Staenberg|
|Distributed by||Summit Entertainment|
Ender's Game is an upcoming American science fiction action film based on the novel of the same name by Orson Scott Card. Directed and written by Gavin Hood, the film will star Asa Butterfield as Andrew "Ender" Wiggin, an unusually gifted child who is sent to an advanced military school in space to prepare for a future alien invasion. The cast also includes Harrison Ford, Ben Kingsley, Aramis Knight, Hailee Steinfeld, Jimmy Pinchak, Viola Davis, and Abigail Breslin.
The film will first be released in the United Kingdom and Ireland on October 25, 2013, followed by release in ten other counties on October 30 and 31 (among them Australia and New Zealand), before it hits the US theatres on November 1, 2013.
After an alien race called the Formics (also known as the "Buggers") attacks Earth, the International Fleet prepare for the next invasion by training the best young children to find the future leader to lead the International Military. Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield), a shy but strategically brilliant boy, is pulled out of his Earth school to join International Fleet and attend the legendary Battle School in Space. After easily mastering the increasingly difficult war games, distinguishing himself and winning respect among his peers, Ender is soon ordained by Colonel Graff (Harrison Ford) as the military's next great hope, resulting in his promotion to Command School. Once there, he's trained by Mazer Rackham (Ben Kingsley) himself to lead the military into a war that will determine the future of Earth and the human race.
- Asa Butterfield as Ender Wiggin. In a 1999 interview, Orson Scott Card confirmed that Jake Lloyd was under consideration for the role. Card asked fans not to judge Lloyd based on his performance in The Phantom Menace, saying that a better script and direction would result in a better performance. In July 2008, Card stated that he would like to see Nathan Gamble play Ender, and expressed regret that he was "probably too old" for the part.
- Harrison Ford as Colonel Graff. Early in the film's development, Card considered changing Graff to a female, and recommended a "dry comic" such as Janeane Garofalo or Rosie O'Donnell for the role.
- Abigail Breslin as Valentine Wiggin
- Hailee Steinfeld as Petra Arkanian
- Aramis Knight as Bean
- Moises Arias as Bonzo
- Jimmy Pinchak as Peter Wiggin
- Suraj Parthasarathy as Alai
- Conor Carroll as Bernard
- Khylin Rhambo as Dink
- Brandon Soo Hoo as Fly Molo
- Ben Kingsley as Mazer Rackham. In a 1998 interview, Card suggested Andre Braugher or Will Smith for the role.
- Viola Davis as Major Anderson
- Caleb J. Thaggard as Stilson. Brendan Meyer was originally cast in the role, but had to leave the production due to a scheduling conflict.
- Stevie Ray Dallimore as John Paul Wiggin
- Andrea Powell as Theresa Wiggin
- Nonso Anozie as Sergeant Dap
- Dee Bradley Baker as TBA (voice)
- Cameron Gaskins as Pol Slattery
- Tony Mirrcandani as Admiral Chamrajnagar
- Orson Scott Card as Pilot (voice cameo)
Since Ender's Game's publication in 1985, author Orson Scott Card had always been protective of the film rights and artistic control. Card explained that he had many opportunities through the 1980s and 1990s to sell the rights of Ender's Game to Hollywood studios, but refused when creative differences became an issue. With the formation of Fresco Pictures in 1996 (which Card co-founded), the author decided to write the screenplay himself.
In a 1998 interview, Orson Scott Card discussed the process of adapting the novel into a screenplay. "The first decision I made was not to pursue the Peter/Valentine subplot with the Internet, because that's just watching people type things into the computer. The second decision I made was to give that information about the surprise at the end from the start. In my script we know who Mazer Rackham really is and we know what is at stake as Ender plays his games. But Ender doesn't know, so I think the suspense is actually increased because the audience knows we're about the business of saving the world and that everything depends on this child not understanding that. We care all the more about whether he wins – and we worry that he might not want to. As we watch the adults struggle to get control of Ender, we pity him because of what's happening to him, but we want the adults to succeed. I think it makes for a much more complex and fascinating film than it would have been if I had tried to keep secrets."
Card submitted a screenplay to Warner Bros. in 2003, at which time David Benioff and D. B. Weiss were hired to collaborate a new script in consulation with the then-designated director Wolfgang Petersen. Four years later, Card wrote a new script not based on any previous ones, including his own.
Card announced in February 2009 that he had completed a script for Odd Lot Entertainment, and that they had begun assembling a production team. In September 2010 it was announced that Gavin Hood was attached to the project, serving as both screenwriter and director. In November 2010, Card stated that the film's storyline would be a fusion of Ender's Game and its parallel novel, Ender's Shadow, focusing on the important elements of both. On January 28, 2011, it was reported that Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman would be producing the work and would begin presenting the script to prospective investors.
On April 28, 2011, Summit Entertainment picked up the film's distribution along with Digital Domain. Gavin Hood joined as director, using Hood's script adaptation, and Donald McAlpine joined as cinematographer. Creative producers are Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman of K/O Paper Products, with financial producers Gigi Pritzker and Linda McDonough of Odd Lot Entertainment. The film is also being produced by Lynn Hendee and Robert Chartoff (Chartoff Productions) and Card.
In March 2013, some LGBT and pro-gay marriage groups began to criticize the film, which gives a producer's credit to Orson Scott Card, who is known for his opposition to same-sex marriage. Public relations exec Mark Umbach commented, "there is a huge LGBT audience for science fiction, and it's going to be hard for those fans to separate Card’s comments from his work." The industry trade paper The Hollywood Reporter commented: "The new scrutiny of Card’s views could be a problem for the $110 million 'Ender’s Game' movie".
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- Ender's Game Blog
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