Ready Player One is basically a massive dose of late ’70s/early ’80s nostalgia wrapped in a fairly straightforward SF thriller: There’s a young hero of modest means, an enemy with vast resources aligned against him, and a treasure up for grabs. The screenplay rights were snapped up almost immediately, needless to say, and now we may have a director.
According to The Tracking Board, Warner Bros. has offered the book to Christopher Nolan, mostly because with Inception and Interstellar, he’s their in-house SF guy. But one has to wonder if this is their goal or a starting point.
Nolan can be a dryly funny filmmaker, but he’s not exactly Mr. Warm on screen, and this is a book largely about the fondness people feel for the pop culture of their youth. It’s hard to see the guy making a movie peppered with references to WarGames and the Tomb of Horrors. It all but screams “Mr. Spielberg, please direct me!” when you read it, really.
Either way, the book’s coming to the screen; it’s a throwback that touches on beloved cultural memories, and that’s exactly what movie studios want right now. We’ll see if Nolan decides to go ’80s on us.