Straczynski Lands Ellison's 'Repent, Harlequin! Said The Ticktock Man'
Over the past few years, writer J. Michael Straczynski has jumped genres from Marvel's Thor in 2011 to Underworld: Awakening in 2012 and World War Z last year. Now he's heading into straight-up sci-fi territory with an adaptation of Repent, Harlequin! Said the Ticktock Man, a story published by Harlan Ellison in Galaxy Magazine back in 1965. In a completely regulated society, where being a minute late here and there shortens your life accordingly, the Ticktock Man is king; Harlequin is the jellybean joker who wants to knock him from his perch. This is the first time the author has allowed his story to be adapted.
Ellison himself is a veteran of anthology series like "The Twilight Zone" and "The Outer Limits," not to mention "Star Trek." Deadline says the author only agreed to give Straczysnki the rights to his story (which won the 1966 Hugo Award and 1965 Nebula Award) after he delivered a finished screenplay for approval. Ellison has been known in Hollywood for being somewhat difficult to work with as a writer, so his approval means a lot in this scenario. Now Straczysnki's next move is to find some producers and a director, and his eyes are currently on Peter Jackson and Guillermo del Toro. But we'll see if he can lock them down.