The SyFy Channel has announced that it will be developing two new literary adaptations during its annual upfronts in New York on Wednesday, adding to the list of classic science fiction novels that will be developed for the network.
According to Entertainment Weekly, the SyFy channel will be filming Larry Niven’s novel Ringworld, and Sir Arthur C. Clarke’s novel Childhood’s End. The miniseries projects join two other, previously announced projects from the channel, Philip K. Dick’s The Man in the High Castle, with Ridley Scott attached as an executive producer, and Stephen King’s novel Eyes of the Dragon.
First published in 1970, Niven’s novel Ringworld follows Louis Wu and a team of handpicked explorers who venture into unknown space to investigate the discovery of an artifact in deep space: a constructed world encircling its star. Upon arrival, the team crashes onto the world, where they discover ancient and collapsed civilizations, along with deep seeded mysteries of advanced races in the universe. The series sparked several sequel novels, all set in Niven’s ‘Known Space’ universe, and has been cited as inspiration for other SF properties, such as Halo. In 1971, the novel won the Hugo, Nebula and Locus awards.
Clarke’s Childhood’s End, published in 1953 likewise concerns itself with the advancement of humanity through powerful, god-like alien races. When alien ships appear above the cities of Earth, humanity finds that they’re no longer alone in the universe, and over the centuries, they are slowly introduced to the race of beings above them, with enormous consequences for humanity. In 2004, the novel was nominated for a retro-Hugo award (for 1954), but lost to Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451.
The SyFy Channel has produced a number of fairly well done miniseries events in the past: Dune, Children of Dune, Battlestar Galactica (pilot miniseries), and Taken have all been screened on the channel, and are far better than the usual fare that is screened. Hopefully, one or all of these projects will be produced and completed. This is the second time that the channel has announced an adaptation of Ringworld, the first being in 2004, which ultimately never moved forward.
Ringworld and Childhood’s End are both considered classics of the genre, and it will be nice to see them on the small screen at some point in the near future.
Are there any books that you’d like to see the SyFy channel adapt?
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