Fox Adapting Asimov's Sci-Fi 'The Caves Of Steel' with Henry Hobson

September 22, 2011
Source: Deadline

Isaac Asimov's The Caves Of Steel

More sci-fi coming our way courtesy of another Isaac Asimov adaptation - awesome! Deadline reports that 20th Century Fox is developing a live-action adaptation of Asimov's 1953 story The Caves Of Steel, and has already attached graphic/credits sequence designer Henry Hobson to direct his first feature. The story is a murder mystery that takes place "roughly three millennia in Earth's future, a time when hyperspace travel has been discovered," and Earth is overpopulated and there's a fear of robots. Okay, I'm hooked, I just hope Hobson can put together that world, but he's also working on another zombie film called Maggie first.

Adapting the script from Isaac Asimov's story is screenwriter John Scott 3 (that's his full name) who, when not working on scripts with Hobson, works at the Chandra X-Ray Observatory, which takes photos of X-ray photons in deep space. Here's the murder mystery setup in Caves of Steel: A Spacer Ambassador lobbying to loosen Earth's anti-robot restrictions is found dead, his chest imploded by an energy blaster, and a detective is matched with a human-looking robot to solve the crime. Elijah Baley and R. Daneel Olivaw don't have an easy time with each other or with those New Yorkers, called Medievalists, who despise robots." Producing the film is Simon Kinberg (Jumper, X-Men: First Class, Elysium) at his company Genre Films based at Fox.

I love big sci-fi stories, and since we have so many great sci-fi movies already in the works, it's always exciting to hear about more in development to follow those up. If Hobson is confident he can move onto a major studio project like this and develop a world 1,000 years in the future overrun by robots on an overpopulated Earth, I'm all for it, I'd love to see him pull of something cool. You can see some of Hobson's work directing the Resistance 3 teaser, as well as credits design for Rango, The Help and Sherlock Holmes. And if you haven't read Caves of Steel, might as well pick up a copy while we wait to see how this develops.

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I hope they found a way to keep Sam Waterston alive so he could sell robot insurance.

grimjob on Sep 22, 2011


Robots are everywhere, and they eat old people's medicine for fuel. And when they grab you with those metal claws, you can't break free, because they are made of metal, and robots are strong. Old Glory Insurance, for when the metal ones decide to come for you. And they will.

Lebowski on Sep 22, 2011


Asimov's Robot stories are awesome. I hope this is a great adaptation!

Anonymous on Sep 22, 2011


Those two figures in the picture look like a pre-balding Nicolas Cage and a bulky Michael Cera.

reeft on Sep 22, 2011


jesus. you're right.

grimjob on Sep 22, 2011



reeft on Sep 22, 2011


Just hope they get some appropriately decent-looking actors for Daneel and Elijah! To my mind the descriptions of these two in the Asimov robot novels are as follows:  Daneel:  Of possibly Eurasian/Slavic racial type, around 6' tall, with a lean well-toned body, red-headed with a 'naturally' bronzed skin, and brown eyes, and chiselled bone-structure.  Aristocratic looking with a slim neck. Elijah:  Possibly of Jewish or Celtic racial type, around 5'10" tall, quite well-built, dark haired, sallow complexion, dark brown eyes, and a long craggy dour face. 

Kate on Sep 23, 2011


Hmm...a story from 1953? Could it be "they" are pulling another fast one, like "The Adjustment Bureau"; where the story is in free domain? 🙂 I'll, not in public domain. It's been adapted several times: "A television adaptation was made by the BBC and shown in 1964(It starred Peter Cushing as Elijah Baley and John Carson as R. Daneel Olivaw), only a few short excerpts still exist." "In 1988 Kodak produced a VCR game entitled "Isaac Asimov's Robots" that contained a 45-minute film loosely based on Caves of Steel. It featured many of the characters and settings from the novel, but an altered plotline to fit the needs of a VCR game." "In June 1989, the book was adapted by Bert Coules as a radio play for the BBC, directed by Matthew Walters and starring Ed Bishop as Baley with Sam Dastor as Olivaw. " Anyhow, its about time Isaac Asimov got adaptations of his ace books 🙂

David Banner on Sep 23, 2011


"Anyhow, its about time Isaac Asimov got adaptations of his ace books :)" Agreed--although the good Doctor (well, he was one!) didn't mind that there hadn't been many adaptations of his works.  He did like Ellison's legendary I, ROBOT screenplay.  Later, near the end of his life, Asimov managed to merge the universe of TCOS with his "Foundation" universe.  A tough task, but he did pull it off. I am glad to see TCOS being brought to film, but what worries me is the fact that some critics and moviegoers are going to sneer that it's a "rip-off" of other shows or movies and not bother notice that the novel came first (1953). If it is successful, it would be cool if they adapted the sequel novels Asimov wrote with Baley and R. Daneel Olivaw. 

Anonymous on Sep 23, 2011


Asimov is great!

Davide Coppola on Sep 24, 2011


Such relative optimism, considering the previous horror of "I, Robot".....

Nodin on Sep 24, 2011

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