Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Tuesday Odds & Ends: Akira, Neil Gaiman, Blackadder meets Doctor Who, and giant woolly rats

Hope you all had a wonderful long weekend! Sorry for my blogging absence on Friday. Work's been a bit hectic. Hopefully my plans for self-cloning will ease that a bit. Also, I intend to give myself the ability to fly and eat all the donuts I want without heartburn. Aim high, right?

+ You know how there's been talk off and on about a possible remake of "Akira?" No, I didn't know either. Well, apparently there's been talk off and on about a possible remake of "Akira" and now it looks like Leonardo DiCaprio's production company has hired actual writers for the script. The best news? Those writers are Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby (porn name?) who penned "Iron Man" and "Children of Men" which means they'll probably find a way to put some variation on the word "man" in the "Akira" title.

+ There are plenty of reasons to love Neil Gaiman -- and maybe be a little frightened of him, which is kind of what I'm feeling after seeing "Coraline" for the first time this past weekend -- but perhaps there is no greater reason than the general awesomeness of his home library. For one thing, it has A LOT of books...and apparently, an award from the disembodied head of Jim Nabors (see plaque on left):

And second, it is being guarded by the proud form of half a jackalope, which is, of course, the finest mythical creature in all of America. (Yeah, yetis, I mean it.)

+ Rumor has it that Richard Curtis, creator of "Blackadder" and every British romantic comedy in the last 15 years that I'm not supposed to like but secretly own a DVD copy of anyway, might be writing a script for the new season of "Doctor Who." Curtis is quoted as telling "The Sun" that "there will be a monster. And a famous historical figure will battle the monster." Don't know how much of this I believe, given that jackelope collector Neil Gaiman was also rumored to be writing "Who" scripts a couple years back.

+ Thanks to Park Bench reader Daven for these cool links to some truly groundbreaking new energy technologies. You have to check out these organic light-emitting diodes which are highly flexible and give off virtually no heat...and are pretty damn awesome to look at. Even more fancy and fine? Paper-thin batteries.

+ And finally, did you hear about the 40 new species of animal discovered by researchers from the United States, UK and Papua New Guinea? After climbing into the kilometer-deep crater of Mount Bosavi, the scientists discovered a vibrant jungle habitat containing, among other mind-blowing creatures, fanged frogs, grunting fish and giant woolly rats.


Michele said...

Actually, the talk about Neil Gaiman writing a DW episode was just last year. And it's still possible, considering they've mostly been off air for a year. As for the Curtis rumour. Take one large bucket of salt, ingest, read 'The Sun'...

Also, I want to marry Neil Gaiman so I get the right to hang out in his library. (Yeah, I do know he has a partner and daughter!)

Ellie said...

large wooly rats? You mean of course not that they have DISCOVERED these, but that they have REDISCOVERED these.

They were previously discussed in William Goldman's historical anthology "The Princess Brider" under the misnomer "ROUS's" or rodents of unusual size.

Tracy said...

The Curtis story is on the BBC website. That is pretty reliable.

The new Who has had lots of "atypical" writers. The new showrunner Stephen Moffat was far better know for his dramas and sitcoms before Russell T. Davies invited him to write for Doctor Who. Mark Gatiss is known mostly for his membership in the comedy troop League of Gentlemen. Paul Cornell was mostly known for medical dramas like Casualty.

Now ... who knows what the story may be with Gaiman. When Neil posts about it on his blog, I willtake the notion seriously.

crone51 said...

Gaiman's dating Amanda Palmer. How wonderfully odd is that. His library looks like the library in Sandman!

I also wish to marry Neil Gaiman. Line forms to the right ( next to all the cryptozoological specimens).

Anonymous said...

Paul Cornell wrote a whole heap of Who books in the gap, lots of stuff about Eight. Human Nature was his book with Eight before it was an episode with Ten.

That is an awesome library. Want.

Tracy said...

Cornell's novel Human Nature was an Seventh Doctor (Sylvester McCoy) story not an Eighth Doctor (Paul McGann) piece.

I am looking at the cover of my copy as I type this but you can probably check it out on Amazon or something. Besides, the novel was published in 1995. McGann did not become the Doctor until 1996 (when the Fox-BBC movie was first shown).

In addition to the change in incarnation & companion, there were a number of other differences between the novel and the TV two-parter (Human Nature / Family of Blood) ... one of which was a character pretending to be the Tenth Doctor in the novel. The biggest change from novel to TV episodes, though, is the Doctor's motivation for becoming human. Some of my own favorite touches in the TV adaptation -- the fob watch and the scarecrows -- were entirely RTD's invention (according to Cornell himself).

I sometimes think that half of Britain's writers have penned a Who novel, short story, comic or radio play at some point or other.

Dayna said...

I had to get a napkin to wipe the drool off from looking at Neil Gaiman's library. I already loved the man for all his books/short stories/poetry and general awesomeness that is he. Then he decided to go and date one of my favorite musicians (which means I'm jealous of them both).

Now this library...it's official, I shall have to either marry him or become his housekeeper so I can get into that library on a daily basis.

Lisa said...

So I am the only one who kinda hoped the rats would be Jeff Smith's stupid, stupid rat creatures?