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More Odds, More Ends

Lots of stuff going on that I've been meaning to post about... but there's lots of stuff going on, so I haven't had the time.

Stuff stirring on the comic book front, but I can't talk about that yet. Maybe in a couple months. Maybe sooner. Maybe both.

Cool stuff coming in from Cyanide Studios on the videogame too. Can't share that either. Sorry, sorry.

Melinda and I caught the Swedish film of THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO a couple nights ago at the Screen. Highly recommended. I want to talk about this in detail on my website, on my long neglected "What I'm Watching" page, but, alas, I probably won't. Suffice it to say it was a very faithful adaptation of an excellent novel. I consumed all three of the Stieg Larsson novels (the last when I was in Ireland last year to watch the pilot filmed) and found them terrific reads, but they're quite graphic, and I was worried about how they'd translate to film. Very well indeed, as it happens. At least for this version. (I shudder to think what the rumored big budget Hollywood remake will be like. For starts, they will probably move the whole thing from Sweden to California). Lisbeth Salander is a terrific character, and Noomi Rapace does a superb job of portraying her. (Hollywood, I fear, will soften the character and make her more "likeable," which will ruin her utterly). Anyway, see this. And read the Larsson books, if you haven't done so already.

On the "guilty pleasures" front, I have been meaning to confess how much I enjoy DEADLIEST WARRIOR on Spike. All those gel torsos and pig carcasses, what's not to like? The second season just started here. Not as cool as the first so far, but still pretty cool. Given my predilictions, I like the episodes featuring ancient warriors better than the modern ones. And I still say the Knight was robbed. He was the only pre-gunpowder warrior who had to go up against an opponent with firearms. Not fair. And DEADLIEST WARRIOR also confirms a point I have been trying to hammer home for years, in my books and, more recently, in those Suvudu cage matches -- defense rules. Armor kicks ass. Before gunpowder, give me a suit of plate-and-mail, a stout helm, and a whomping big shield, and keep magic out of it, and I'll make mincepie out of unarmored or lightly armored opponents.

Monkey front. Whacking at King Kong, making progress, but not as fast or easy as I like. But Freaky Monkey is finally coming together, and him I should be able to get off my back in the next few weeks.

Yes, casting is on-going for the HBO series, so I've been seeing a lot of tapes. No, I won't say who, but it's been fun. Some actors are household names who would be recognized by any film or television fan, some are veteran character actors, some are brilliant young newcomers. A wealth of choices. There are a lot of fine actors out there. On the other hand, some of these roles are very challenging, to say the least. (No, there are no obscure hints there). Parts are being cast in roughly the order they will appear in the show, so right now we're mostly concerned with filling parts for the pilot reshoots and episode two. Characters like Lord Tywin (who does not appear until my episode, episode eight) and Shae are not going to be cast until much later in the process.

It's not always going to be the most familiar names who get the roles, either. And to all the dreamers and aspiring actors out there, let me say this -- PLEASE stop sending me your photographs and resumes, I am not the way to get a part on the series. You need to go through our casting director, not through me.

What else, what else? More than I can recall. It's late, and bed beckons. Tomorrow I have to whack at King Kong again.



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May. 7th, 2010 08:40 am (UTC)
I'm very much with you on the Lisbeth Salander love.

They did a terrific job with the tv adaption. Noomi Rapace' performance was chillingly good. In a way I even liked the movies better than the books, because they tuned down the sueishness of Blomkvist a little and because the protrayal of Salander was so great. It's amazing how rare it is to see a woman on tv, who never smiles.

I'm also with you on the dread about the Hollywood version. I alread see it comming. Angelina Jolie as Salander and Brad Pitt as Blomkvist, this time with even more women to sleep with than in the books. :)
May. 7th, 2010 08:54 am (UTC)
Who is the casting agent? I don't know if you'll be doing flash backs to the last war or not... If not I'll need to wait until next season before asking my agent to sell me.
May. 7th, 2010 09:21 am (UTC)
Hi George,

I usually don't start reading a series that hasn't been concluded yet. So a friend recommend "A Game Of Thrones" to me without telling there's more - of which I'm glad. Otherwise I'd be four great books short.

So I just wanted to thank you.
For bringing to life Westeros and the Free cities and the Dothraki Sea and all the places inbetween.
For the Lannisters and the Starks and the Baratheons, and all the other houses (and persons) great and small, whether they be dog, imp, craven, beauty, eunuch or warg.
For all the little deatils that give depth to the world you created, like a maesters collar - and for putting them in when it fits smoothly into the story. You don't explain how something works, you show it.

In short: thanks for the song you've sung thus far, I'm eager to hear the next verse. So keep on whacking ;)
May. 7th, 2010 06:35 pm (UTC)
Re: Thanks
Wholeheartedly seconded!!
May. 7th, 2010 09:24 am (UTC)
Stieg Larsson
I'm Swedish so I read the Stieg Larsson trilogy some years ago. Didn't know it was so well known outside of Sweden. Just recently watched the movies (extended versions, I think) and I too thought they were quite faithful, though I didn't like the dialogue very much. Maybe it does not come across to non-swedes but I thought the lines were contrived and artificial, making them hard for the actors to deliver.
May. 7th, 2010 10:40 am (UTC)
So much stuff going on :S

How do you find the time? I don't envy you at all... Reading these posts makes me a little less impatient about dance with dragons (maybe that was your point?), because I really think you need a break :)
May. 7th, 2010 04:44 pm (UTC)
Yes! He really should slow down. I'm half his age but he seems to be doing twice as much as me! It's amazing.
May. 7th, 2010 10:45 am (UTC)
Deadliest Warrior
So glad to hear someone else say this out loud! (Or, in this case, write it in public.) Their methods may be suspect, but they're just scientific enough to be semi-plausible while still being entertaining. I have to say, though, my favorite part of the show is watching the guest experts start to get into it, each claiming that their warrior is "clearly" the favorite.
May. 7th, 2010 01:03 pm (UTC)
Re: Deadliest Warrior
The show is interesting to watch right up until the fights at the end. :P Though pitting the ninja against the Spartan and the pirate against the knight was a missed opportunity imo.
Re: Deadliest Warrior - dothraki - May. 7th, 2010 08:15 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Deadliest Warrior - lampster65 - May. 7th, 2010 08:29 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Deadliest Warrior: my favorite bits - parrismcb - May. 8th, 2010 01:01 am (UTC) - Expand
May. 7th, 2010 10:58 am (UTC)
Deadliest Warrior was silly but fun. I didn't realize the second season had started, but now that I think about it, I have been seeing the posters in the NY subway stations.

I remember being pretty amazed by just how deadly the claymore was - might have been the deadliest melee weapon they showed, if I recall correctly.

Favorite episode was actually the Spetsnaz vs. Green Berets, which would have been closer if that one Green Beret guy did better on the shooting course. He kind of screwed up. The Spetsnaz guys were pretty creepy dudes, though. Not anyone I'd want to grab a beer with.
May. 7th, 2010 11:04 am (UTC)
Dragon Tattoo remake
Rumor has it that Carey Mulligan (sic?) of 'An Education' is being considered in an American adaptation directed by David Fincher of Se7en, Fight Club and Zodiac fame.
May. 7th, 2010 11:16 am (UTC)
I too, love that show. I caught a Deadliest Warrior marathon one weekend and totally got hooked. And I agree - the Knight was *totally* robbed.

May. 7th, 2010 11:23 am (UTC)
Casting for lord Tywin
I was actually thinking about good castings for a Song of Ice and Fire movie/series before that whole HBO project - and tell me what you think, about J.K Simmons as lord Tywin?
I think he'll be perfect for the job, he has that cool unsmiling authority about him, plus he's already bald, so he wont object to having his head shaved... :P
May. 7th, 2010 08:47 pm (UTC)
Re: Casting for lord Tywin
J.J. Jameson!? I don't see it.

J. Jonah Jameson: Come here. Parker, what do you know about Game of Thrones?
Peter Parker: Oh... well, I...
J. Jonah Jameson: Don't answer that. My society bard got hit in the head by a polo ball. You're all I got. Big party tonight for a Westeros hero, my son the Knight of the Kingsguard.
Peter Parker: [serious] Could you pay me in advance?
[Jameson laughs hysterically for a few seconds]
J. Jonah Jameson: You serious? What, pay you for just standing there? Tomorrow night, the Red Keep, 8:00. There's the door.

Tywin is one of those characters that everyone you talk to seems to have a totally different impression.

I picture somebody between Bill Nighy and Brian Cox. Just that calm, imposing guy who walks into a room of colorful character's like the Small Council, and overshadows EVERYONE in the room by just breathing. Scares the bat sh*t out of you.
Re: Casting for lord Tywin - eran5005 - May. 8th, 2010 07:12 pm (UTC) - Expand
May. 7th, 2010 12:03 pm (UTC)
Smite the monkey!
May. 7th, 2010 12:26 pm (UTC)
Deadliest Warrior and the Monkey
Glad to hear you've nearly vanquished the monkey. And, I agree, Deadliest Warrior is kick ass! I watch it with my son (11) regularly. All the way through the show he peppers me with questions about the featured periods in history - which is great. But of-course, it is the gore and the anticipation of who will be crowned "deadliest" that keeps us watching.
May. 7th, 2010 08:51 pm (UTC)
Re: Deadliest Warrior and the Monkey
My son, also 11, lectures me about the periods in history, at least what he knows from the latest book he reads. The kid DEVOURS books. He just read "Inside Straight". A week ago he was 40 pages in. He told me yesterday he finished it.
May. 7th, 2010 12:30 pm (UTC)
So that's the problem. Kong managed to get himself some plate armour, it seems. But a crossbow bolt or a longbow arrow might go through. Or wait ....

Gnaeus Numerius, get half a dozen of those field catapults, take the Wheel of Time Travel Machine to Westeros and help Mr. Martin with that oversized ape. Whack some bolts into the bugger if needs be. We can't make use of the artillery in the Teutoburg Forest anyway, so you won't be missed in my book. :)

Image link didn't work. Let's try this one.

May. 7th, 2010 12:32 pm (UTC)
Interview for Scifi-universe.com - France
Hello Mr Martin,

My name is Nicolas Winter and i work as a Literary critic at scifi-universe.com.
I have read the new edition of Games of Thrones (I actually read A Clash of King) in France and i criticize it on our site. As HBO decides in the same time to produce a TV show about your book, I will do a large file on you and your books (including A song of ice and fire, Fevre Dream or Haviland Tuf), the future show and some interview. This file will be realease in July or August (I hope for the first trailer of the TV Show).
So can i interview you for this file ? I think i can do this in June if you have some time to answer my questions.

I hope you'll see my message because i haven't your e-mail adress. If you don't see this, i will try to contact you by Thibaud Eliroff.

Have a good day
Nicolas Winter

My E-mail adress : Nightbringer@free.fr
May. 7th, 2010 12:44 pm (UTC)
Deadliest Warrior
The first time I watched that show it was with a wrinkled nose. They layered on the cheese pretty thick, even though they were analyzing my favorite warrior. But...I got into it. I mean, come on! How can you help it? Some of the stuff that goes on in that show is just way too cool not to like. And my favorite warrior won in the end, so I've had nothing but respect for them since.
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George R.R. Martin
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