Why isn’t there an I Hunt Killers movie/TV show?

IHK_movie_theaterOf late, I have noticed a certain topic coming up on social media. And it boils down to the question at the top of this page.

For those of you new to the series, rest assured: It was attempted and it failed. There’s no one to blame — things just don’t work out sometimes.

I get it, though — if you’ve read the books and you really, really liked them1 then you’re sitting around going, “WTF, Hollywood? These books are perfect for (as one person wrote to me) ‘a television show or series of blockbuster movies.’ Get on it!”

You want a movie or a TV series. Hell, so do I.

Here’s the deal: There are a ton of books that would make great TV or great movies. A ton of them. Thousands of books are published each year; mere hundreds of movies are made. Not everything that’s worthy will be chosen.

And in general, so far as I can tell, Hollywood decides to make a movie or a TV show from a book based on one of two factors:

  1. Someone very powerful really loves the book and insists on turning it into a film, or
  2. The book is a mega-super-duper-bestseller, so Hollywood knows there’s a built-in audience for it, making it a risk worth taking

It’s not just about “It’s really good and would make a great movie!”

As to #1: Well, look, if any of you out there are close personal friends with someone powerful in Hollywood, sure, go ahead and hand that person a copy of I Hunt Killers. Because if Brad Pitt or Reese Witherspoon or Ryan Reynolds or Jennifer Lawrence read and love it, it’ll become a movie. I guarantee it.

But so far, that hasn’t happened.

As to #2: Hey, I know you loved the books, but we need a couple hundred thousand of your friends to love it, too. Or at least to buy it. Don’t get me wrong: I Hunt Killers is without a doubt the most successful book of my career; it even landed at #3 on the bestsellers list! But what makes something a “hit” in publishing doesn’t always measure up to something that will get Hollywood’s attention. As best I can tell, I’d need to sell four or five times more copies of I Hunt Killers to get Hollywood to sit up and take notice. And at this late date, with the book being so old, the odds of hundreds of thousands of readers suddenly discovering it are pretty slim.

The news isn’t all bad, though. There’s still option #1. Rest assured: My agent is always working to put the book in front of the right people, and even though we’ve had no luck thus far…we only have to get lucky once.

  1. And thank you for that!

Fixing Things with Spit

IMG_4499_blogifiedThat, in case you are interested, is a picture of my TV, a venerable old Vizio 37″ model purchased somewhere in the desert wilds of Las Vegas back in November of 2007. It’s the only TV in the house and has served me (and now my wife and offspring) quite well.

Yesterday afternoon, my wife summoned me to the living room. The TV wouldn’t turn on.

It had turned on just that morning, so I thought maybe something was bollixed up with the signal from the remote. I use a Harmony Remote (it, too, is venerable and dates back to the days of the first iPhone) that sometimes gives my wife fits. I figured she’d hit the wrong button, but it turns out, yeah, the remote couldn’t turn the TV on.

I pressed the power button on the TV itself and it sprang to life. Problem solved.

Except, a few minutes later, she summoned me once again — the volume buttons weren’t working. [Read more…]

Channels Dying? Good!

television-37241_1280_blogifiedOver on Medium, tech guru M.G. Siegler discusses coming changes in the TV industry wrought by the internet, as well as by new players such as Apple shaking up the status quo. I agree with much of what he says. This bit jumped out at me, though:

Another side effect is that certain channels, when unbundled, are going to die. Those handful of channels myself and the majority of others want currently subsidize the other, more niche channels. I suspect we’ll see some of those try to re-bundle themselves (Travel + Food Package, etc) but a lot of channels are going to go away.

In some ways that sucks. But it is what it is. Big changes require big changes. And some casualties.

I don’t think “that sucks” at all. There are a billion TV channels right now and quite frankly, most of them are crap. They regurgitate the same “reality” bilge over and over again, empty entertainment calories to binge on. Background noise while you fold the laundry.

Those channels that are currently 90% filler and 10% moderately interesting will go away. With any luck, the 10% interesting stuff will migrate to a channel that has also been forced to discard its crap, as quality consolidates. The end result? Fewer channels with a higher signal-to-junk ratio.

Of course, with my luck, the 90% will survive and congregate, and the good stuff will be sloughed off…

Lost: Sex = Death

Ever since Shannon took a bullet to the belly, it’s been something of a running joke amongst fans of this show that sex equals death. Well, tonight we got concrete proof that it’s not just a joke among fans — it’s freakin’ deliberate.

Juliet confirms that women who conceive on the island die, usually by the middle of their second trimester, never later than the beginning of the third. And Sun, we learn, was impregnated by Jin…on the island. (Yeah, we learned his swimmers don’t swim a while back, but tonight Juliet rather casually informed us that sperm production is up five-fold on the island. Which makes me think that Dharma’s missing a bet with all this cloak and dagger stuff — they should just rent out the island to infertile men! Let them come here for a hefty fee, impregnate their wives, then go home to deliver safely. Lot more money in that than in terrifying helpless castaways.)

Where was I? Oh, yeah — Sun’s gonna die. Bummer, huh?

Actually, though, I like this plot development. It adds a ticking clock to a show that’s been woefully missing one for a while. Now there’s a compelling reason to figure out the island mysteries and get off the island as quickly as possible. (Other than, y’know, just wanting to get the hell of the island in the first place!)

Further in the “answers revealed” category this week, Mikhail reveals that–

Wait a sec.


Shoved-through-the-sonic-fence-by-Locke, blood-spurting-out-his-ears, foaming-at-the-mouth, “He’s dead, Jim,” Mikhail?

Um, yeah. He’s back. With no explanation. Which is actually fine because it was such a complete shock to me that I prefer it go unexplained for now.

Anyway, he reveals that, yes, the island does have mysterious healing properties. Yeah, we’ve known that for a while, but now someone has told the castaways in no uncertain terms.

Things like this, coupled with Juliet’s comment on sperm production, make me think that maybe the producersare going to start doling out the answers a little bit. Stranger things have happened, I guess.

In the flashbacks… Um, we learn that Jin and Sun love each other a lot. (Which we knew already.) We learn that Sun is a hard-core bad-ass. (Which, uh, we knew already.) We learn that Jin’s mother is/was a prostitute who blackmailed Sun. (Which we didn’t know already, but which was telegraphed really badly.) And we learn that Jin’s dad keeps $100 grand in cold, hard Korean cash in his safe and doesn’t mind punching in the code while his daughter is standing there.

Which we didn’t know. But, uh, does anyone feel enlightened by that knowledge?

So, back on the island, Juliet leaves Ben a love note, saying, “I hate you,” which is nice. And Lady from the Sky gives us a great cliffhanger when she reveals that Oceanic Flight 815 was found…and there were no survivors. Ooh… That’s enough to keep me coming back next week, kids.


When Juliet takes Sun to the Caduceus, I couldn’t help thinking, “Why haven’t the castaways moved in here yet? It’s safe; it’s dry; it’s got electricity.”

Which, of course, brought me back to my same old bugabooWhy in the name of all that is holy and good and righteous haven’t the castaways moved to Otherville yet? Jesus! Someone, anyone on the writing staff, PLEASE throw in a single line explaining this because it’s killing me! Of all the lame-brained things the castaways have done on the island, this is surely the stupidest. And every time an episode goes by without an explanation, a little piece of me dies.

And that’s just sad.

Heroes: Death and Life and More Death

Heroes is back.

Oh, thank God. Oh, thank you thank you thank you.

This show’s hiatus hurt. It hurt bad, man. Like a young panty-less starlet heading to rehab, I’ve been shivering and shaking for more than a month. Yeah, there’s been Lost — my own personal methadone — but nothing takes the edge off like the pure rush of 100% pure Heroes. Ah, man. So good…

Oh, sorry. Where was I? Right. Heroes is back.

I’m pretty much reduced to a babbling idiot, so I’ll just blurt out the things that made me as happy as Steve Jobs showing off an iPhone.

Loved HRG’s almost relaxed stoicism (a paradox, yeah, but it fits) while locked up at Primatech. Loved the sheer joy Thompson exuded while being menacing. So deliciously evil. I love that he loves his work.

Went delirious at HRG’s ungodly strong faith in just thinking hard at Matt to get his attention and trusting that Matt would “hear” him. HRG is, without a doubt, the single coolest character in pop culture right now.

Oh, God — Linderman is executing a Watchmen gambit… (If you don’t get that…head to your local comic book store and buy Watchmen!)

Speaking of Linderman… Does MacDowell own that role or what? When he grinned at Micah, I thought, “Oh, wow! Santa Claus has an evil twin! Cool!”

Sylar found a great way to fight an invisible opponent. Throw a bunch of crap around the room with your telekinesis and kill him dead. Nice.

(Um, which actually brings me to my only nitpick for the episode: Why did Mohinder leave Sylar? Jesus! Should have slit the guy’s throat before you went hauling Peter’s body all over Manhattan. [BTW, how did he explain that to the cabbie?])

Matt laughing at HRG; “You’re middle management.” Priceless.

Isaac’s death — yow! So well done.

Oh, Lord. I have to wait a week until the next episode? And there’s only four left until another looooooong hiatus?

I shall begin weeping now.