Vincenzo Natali is securing funding for his adaptation of William Gibson’s novel Neuromancer according to Empire. For me this is exciting news – Natali has been one of my favourite directors ever since I first saw ‘Cube’. He also made the seriously underrated ‘Cypher’, the quite bizarre ‘Nothing’ and the mostly-very-good ‘Splice’, four atypical sci-fi films that all share Natali’s trademark visual style which I would describe as being very crisp, elegant and precise – Cypher especially is a very beautiful looking film.
William Gibson’s Neuromancer is the book that invented cyberpunk, and is one of the most venerated sci-fi books of all time. Along with Grant Morrison’s comic ‘The Invisibles’ it provided most of the ideas used in ‘The Matrix’ such as the whole idea of cool hackers and cyberspace, and in fact along with ‘Blade Runner’ I think it invented the whole shades-of-grey and neon sci-fi worlds that we now take for granted. Personally I didn’t like the book so much – I prefer a slower tempo – but I am pretty sure it will make a great film especially if the gloomy cities and vivid, surreal cyber landscapes are visualised well. William Gibson says of the screenplay that it’s “one of the best adaptations he’s ever read” and it’s usually a good sign when an author says this (instead of say, pre-emptively disowning any adaptations like Alan Moore), while Natali is determined not to let a studio interfere in the “rough edges” the book has. Overall, a promising project – due to start filming at the start of next year.