What is Next for State of Play Director Kevin Macdonald?
by Alex Billington
April 22, 2009
Those of you who have seen State of Play know that it's a great film for many reasons, but one of them is because Kevin Macdonald's direction is top notch and it adds a lot to the experience. So therefore I'm naturally interested in following him and his projects, since this isn't his first great film (he also directed The Last King of Scotland). Variety announced today that Macdonald will develop and direct an adaptation of Isaac Asimov's 1955 novel "The End of Eternity". But that's not his very next project. He's also set to direct a project called Eagle of the Ninth, a second-century Roman military drama for Focus Features.
Eagle of the Ninth is based on a novel of the same name written by Rosemary Sutcliff. The adaptation was written by Jeremy Brock (Mrs Brown, Charlotte Gray, The Last King of Scotland, Brideshead Revisited). It sounds pretty cool and with Macdonald directing I'm sure it'll be great, but I want to focus on Asimov's "The End of Eternity." Variety didn't reveal any other big details about the book or the project or anything, besides that Macdonald is developing it for New Regency and that Vince Gerardis is producing. But before I get into it anymore, let's take a look at a synopsis, because it's important to understand what it's about.
Andrew Harlan is an Eternal, a man whose job it is to range through past and present Centuries, monitoring and, where necessary, altering Time's myriad cause-and-effect relationships. But when Harlan meets and falls for a non-Eternal woman, he seeks to use the awesome powers and techniques of the Eternals to twist time for his own purposes, so that he and his love can survive together.
I haven't read the book, but it has an incredibly intriguing bit of depth to it. I love how it presents "falling in love" as the "one unforgivable sin" of the Eternals. "Andrew knew he could not keep this secret forever. And so he began to plan his escape… a plan that changed his own past… and threatened Eternity itself." Again, I don't like making comparisons, but this is starting to sound a bit like Gattaca, which is one of my favorite sci-fi movies. And I can't begin to imagine what an Isaac Asimov story in the hands of Kevin Macdonald would look like. As in, if this continues to develop, it could become one of my most anticipated projects.