The Myst movie project has been silent for several months. We just got an update, which describes a bunch of turmoil and sadness within the project team:
In our initial informal meetings with every major studio in town and their top brass, it became clear that the BoT [Book of Ti'ana] was going to be VERY hard if not impossible to sell as a starting point for the movie franchise. There is a litany of reasons for this, which have been discussed in detail in previous msytmovie.com posts so I won't bore you with them.
As the necessity for a new creative direction became clear, it was harder for some to accept then others. Of course Adrian and Patrick spent years developing and working towards a very specific vision for the BoT, including writing a full length spec script based on the book. As the changes were discussed among our LA partners, Cyan, and MFG, it became clear that Adrian and Patrick's plan to move forward was not aligning with everyone else. I don't think this is the time or place to get into the details, but Cyan ultimately came to the decision that the best thing for the property was to have Adrian step down as MFG's lead producer, and have me step into those shoes. (If you remember Patrick stepped down as producer for personal reasons a couple years ago.) This was of course, very difficult for everyone involved, but most of all for Adrian. I want to make it clear here that Cyan made a very difficult but well-informed decision, based on what was best for the property. Everyone involved sans Adrian and Patrick were in full agreement with their decision.
(-- Isaac Testerman, July 20, forum post) (cached on my web site)
To be clear, this isn't a case of Cyan hiring their own people and throwing out the original producers the next day. Adrian Vanderbosch and Patrick McIntire started this ball rolling; they pitched it to Cyan; Cyan gave them the movie rights. Over the course of the next few years, they worked with various people, including Isaac Testerman. I don't know the exact organization, but from the outside, it was a team. (Collaborating closely with Rand Miller and the Cyan people.)
It appears that the team ran into a classic case of Irreconcilable Creative Differences. The simplistic explanation seems to be "Do we adapt the Book of Ti'ana into a movie, or do something else?" but I'm sure there was a lot more detail than that. At any rate, it was ultimately Cyan's decision, and Cyan made it:
After a couple months both parties were not able to reach agreeable terms and as Cyan's option (the legal document that allows you to control the rights) with MFG was expiring, they chose not to renew it with them. Delve Films then entered into negotiations with Cyan and purchased the option, obtaining the audio/visual rights to the Myst property going forward.
(-- same post)
("MFG", Mysteria Film Group, is the group that Patrick and Adrian started. Delve Films is Isaac's baby. So this translates to "Patrick and Adrian got cut out", if you want to put it crudely; but more in the sense of "that company has become paralyzed, so we'll drop it and start over with as many of the same people as we can.")
The old project web site at mystmovie.com remains un-updated and may be moribund at this point. Followers and fans are blogging at mystmoviefans.wordpress.com.
So, at this point, we have some sort of Myst movie project, but not the one we thought we had. I have no more details than anybody else, so I won't try to predict what will happen next. The post alludes teasingly to "[bringing] in millions of new fans through multiple audio/visual and interactive platforms". Could be anything, then.
Update, July 24th:
Adrian Vanderbosch has updated the mystmovie.com blog with his side of the story.
It is, I think it is fair to say, an angry denial and denunciation of Isaac Testerman's story:
To put it bluntly, my departure from the "Myst" movie project was due to nothing short of a coup, orchestrated and executed by Isaac, with the support of the company heads of Cyan Worlds.
(-- Adrian Vanderbosch, July 23, blog post) (cached on my web site)
I will not try to summarize the post, nor would there be any point in me taking sides. It was already clear that the breakup of this effort was acrimonious. Isaac's post was short, politic, and general; Adrian's is long, emotional, and specific -- so there's no point-by-point disagreement. It's all a question of who did what in good or bad faith.
I will note the timeline, though: the "coup" (Adrian's term) or "[decision] to have Adrian step down" (Isaac's) occurred more than a year ago, in April 2011. Everything since then has been (failed) legal negotiation and people waiting for the clock to run out on MFG's film option.
My original comments stand: this is a bunch of turmoil and sadness. And whatever film project is in progress, it doesn't bear any resemblance to one we started hearing about several years ago. ("...we've had to go back to the drawing board", in Isaac's words.) We just don't have any meaningful details.
Update, July 25th: As was fairly predictable, the posts and threads I have linked to have been pulled down. I believe it is better to have a historic record, so I have cached these documents on my web site.
Comments imported from Gameshelf
Rick Hartman (Jul 30, 2012 at 10:17 PM):
Thank you for posting the full documents. I didn't have a chance to read them when they were first posted. I am one of the fans who have been keeping up with Mystmovie.com since early 2008. I come to think of Patrick and Adrian as friends. It's heartbreaking to learn of the outcome of all their hard work. I know that the documents had been pulled but I'm glad I've had the opportunity to hear from Adrian at least one last time.
Pedro (Aug 5, 2012 at 12:35 AM):
Shame on you Cyan and Isaac! I hope you watered-down movie never gets made or, if it does, fails completely.
Fargle (Aug 7, 2012 at 6:30 AM):
@Pedro: Why hope for failure? I for one would love to see the worlds of Myst come alive as a movie franchise. If Adrian's and Patrick's vision of how to do this wasn't viable, and it seems that even Cyan weren't willing to go to bat for it in the end, then another needed to be found. By trying to hold onto a story that the studios couldn't sell to a wider audience, they were going to doom the project to certain failure. If they'd made the movie Adrian wanted, and it only appealed to the people in the Myst community, it would most likely have been a huge flop at the box office, and any hope of a franchise would have died with it. This way, the first movie might actually get made, and there is still a chance for it to be successful enough to spawn more. It's sad to see the people who worked so hard to get this project started stranded at the side of the road as it picks up speed, but it's also pretty predictable. The people running the studios didn't get there by playing nice. I just hope Cyan and the new company can bring a story to the screen that retains some of what makes Myst special, and don't allow it to become just another generic CGI action movie.
Ray Aits's (Aug 8, 2012 at 12:26 PM):
@Fargle But, if you read Adrian's post, 'Adrian's and Patrick's version' was never even tried. The story they'd spend years developing was ignored by the producers in favor of what could quite possibly be sub-par stories (probably 'safe' Hollywood junk), not the jewel that is BoT.
A horrible, Hollywood-ized version of Myst would be far more damaging to the franchise than no movie at all. However, if the movie does get made, I'd rather see it do horribly and destroy the franchise (and hopefully take Delve Films and Isaac Testerman down with it).
Having spent years on this project, being stabbed in the back, usurped, and having the project ripped out from under their feet is not a suitable reward for Adrian and Patrick.
Andrew Plotkin (Aug 8, 2012 at 12:42 PM):
I know this is an emotional subject, but please remember that we're looking at many months of meetings through a filter of two posts -- one of which has no detail at all. Even if you know Adrian and Patrick personally, you can't point at Adrian's post and claim it's a complete and objective history of the situation.
Or, to be briefer: I don't know what was "tried" and by whom.
If a movie gets made, it might suck. It might suck for the reasons we've heard imputed. Or it might suck for unrelated reasons. Or it might turn out fine. For all we know, the group involved in the project will turn over again, or the rights might be resold to a completely different group.
For all we know, Adrian and Patrick might have made a lousy movie anyhow. Honest, sincere, respectful producers make terrible movies all the time! Maybe you have faith in them, that's fine -- I was optimistic about them myself -- but that is our personal estimations and we can make mistakes too.
kim (Aug 19, 2012 at 1:59 PM):
Thank you for posting these, I had been wondering what had happened to that group as things seemed to be getting tense with the last few posts I'd read apparently over a year ago. I don't hope for the movie's demise but I won't see it if it comes out. There were a few posts and exchanges in that blog before it came down that make me personally think there is more than a kernel of truth to Adrian's side. Cheers
Mirroredfate (Aug 21, 2012 at 11:40 PM):
Well, perhaps this can at least ensure a good production: http://www.change.org/petitions/cyan-worlds-keep-the-myst-movie-true-to-the-lore
Fargle (Aug 22, 2012 at 6:39 PM):
I've followed this project for years, cheering for Adrian and Patrick as they fought to bring it to life. I followed their blog, and watched the first animatic video of their original vision. I saw all the fan support and interaction in the creative process, and wished them the best of luck. But the realist in me always had second thoughts. I'd seen how difficult it was to get MOUL off the ground. A movie was going to be even harder. And face it, there was never really any chance that a studio would turn full control of a multimillion dollar movie over to someone with no track record.
While Myst fans, and I count myself among them, are certainly loyal, there just aren't enough of us to pay for a major film on our own. Even the online version of the game had problems paying for itself. A movie made just for us would never get the budget it needed in Hollywood to be worthwhile. It would end up a cheaply made direct to video or SyFy Channel production if it got made at all. That leaves three other possibilities: 1) try to raise financing for an indy production, and hope the resulting film is good enough to find a distributor, 2) go the fanfic route and have a bunch of enthusiastic amateurs make something on a shoestring budget for their own amusement, or 3) find a way to fit the worlds of Myst into a "formula" the big studios can sell.
Obviously, each method has it's drawbacks. I've seen too many great books, games, and ideas turned into crappy movies to trust Hollywood's track record, but I don't want a movie that's undercut by shoddy production values either. On the plus side, movies like Bladerunner, Avatar, and Prometheus show what's possible in terms of world building. The Lord of the Rings trilogy, the Harry Potter series, and HBO's Game of Thrones show how books can be adapted to the screen, without losing too much of what drew fans to them in the first place. Unfortunately most of Hollywood's output falls far short of these marks.
No book or game can be adapted into a movie without changes. They're different media, with different strengths, and need to be handled in different ways. The worlds of Myst are there to be explored. There's a wealth of story material to draw on. There's a wealth of visual wonders to be seen. The film makers must find a compelling way to put the pieces together, without messing with them too much, and package them for as wide an audience as possible. Keeping in mind that compromises will need to be made to do this, should fans continue to wish them success, in spite of possible changes, or give up on the end result, sight unseen? While I don't have any high expectations, I'd prefer that the movie stay in development until it's ready to be made, by whoever eventually gets the green light (as long as it's not Michael Bay), and hold off judgement until it's finished.
John T. (Sep 5, 2012 at 5:48 PM):
I only have one example to cite of FRANCHISE -vs- MOVIE. Where the FRANCHISE is really good, but the MOVIE is horrible and nothing like the franchise at all. That example is: ERAGON.
Hollywood power players think they are so clever and experienced and know so much and then they completely fail ... I doubt players like those mentioned in this post ever blamed THEMSELVES. IT's going to be the writers and directors and producers and the franchise, not this ridiculous power-playing and inhuman ignorance.
I am FINALLY reading Eragon. Why should I, the movie was absolutely terrible! So, for a long time the Franchise also suffered. I wonder what happened with them?
There are so many other examples of this that this post would be very long. But another example is the movie based on "The Dark is Rising" franchise. Lemony Snicket is another. Yet another is INKHEART.
Thankfully we have had some surprising sucesses. Harry Potter survived the process to continue on till the end. Luckily it was not set in America, either groans. Also, the first "The Hunger Games" was well done. "I Am Number Four" was OK, but I hear it was a pulp book so I do not know.
Meanwhile another FRANCHISE is wallowing in Hollywood Hell, even with big names attached -- Stephen King's "The Dark Tower" series. I mean, how A-list can you get?
Well, I need to say I am not picking sides. How can I? I do not know the full story and I could never feel like all sides to. But it just seems to be a nice Spring breeze that turned into a lethal hurricane. I just hope a good movie is salvaged, and I hope for CYAN WORLDS sake (because I love them) it works out somehow. But if the first movie is like the ERAGON movie, it will not be worth the compromise will it?
Andrew Plotkin (Sep 5, 2012 at 11:15 PM):
I can't disagree with that. (I have my own list of movie renditions that failed horribly -- it's an easy game to play.)
Except that Hollywood was always going to be a hurricane. That was clear going in. Maybe lethal, maybe only exhausting and painful, but the winds are unavoidable.
Fangorn86 (Sep 10, 2012 at 12:02 PM):
Hi, fellow Myst fans! I have some opinions to share.
Maybe Isaac was wrong taking Myst into Hollywood.. but he certainly got some important points. I agree that BoT is a great, (almost) every Myst fan agree with that. But then, me and every Myst fan PLAYED THE GAME BEFORE READING THE BOOKS. As for a Myst Movie, something similar must be done. Something which is still Myst, loosily based on games (and BoA) maybe with something new that can catch people who don't know Myst (as long as it doesn't conflict directly with canon). Then, when the movie has managed to bring the audience attention into Myst, they might want more backstory, and then.. BoT!
And I don't believe Isaac want to ruin what is Myst. I think he just want to recreate Myst with a different approach than using BoT (for a first movie). Maybe something similar to what J.J.Abrams did with Star Trek, which worked very well :)
And finally Isaacs project got Cyan's approvement, and I trust that Cyan can do the decisions that is best for the Myst Franchise.
Kindly regards Fangorn86
ibookworm (Sep 15, 2012 at 10:11 PM):
Hmm . . . Adrian's story sounds sad, but I never thought that the Book of Tiana, or any Myst book, was very good. Part of it was probably the writing, but I also thought that the stories were just bland. Not genius, not brilliant: bland. And this is coming from a lifelong Myst fanatic.
The problem is, what makes the games amazing will be very difficult to translate to a film. The SINGLE area in which video games are a superior storytelling medium is setting. They can make a setting come alive better than a book or a film can. The most memorable games always seem to make setting their primary focus. In Myst, the story is backstory, revealed through the exploration of the setting. Ico is similar. The story stays with you because of the very strong mood established through the wonderful art direction that went into creating that setting. Can that be translated to a film? Not entirely, I think. The can do their best, but they will need a STRONG story to back it up. I don't think anything in the canon currently provides that. I know that's debatable, but that's my impression.
To be honest, I don't expect any Myst movie, whether Adrian's or whatever we may eventually get, to be any good. I've seen too many stories that I love fail to translate to the screen, even when the filmmakers are smart and well-intentioned. But I think this way at least it is not pulled back by source material that just isn't strong enough. Going back to the drawing board isn't always a bad thing.
Fangorn86 (Sep 23, 2012 at 6:31 AM):
@ibookworm, I must say I don't agree there.
When it comes to franchises, I believe in MIRACLES. Just look at Star Trek. I thought before that Star Trek would only appeal to sci-fi geeks like me, but then J J Abrams changed that. I believe something similar can be done to Myst.
I actually love Book of Ti'ana, but a movie based on it would only appeal to people who are already into Myst.
Personally, I think it's possible to make something attractive for the larger audience by letting the storyline be loosely base on the Book of Atrus. Imagine an intro with Gehn crying over the death of Leira, then running up to the volcano, leaving Atrus (as a newborn baby) with Anna. Then, a short section show Atrus grow up in the Cleft. The movie should quickly lead on to Gehn taking Atrus to D'ni. After that, give more focus on exploring and writing fantastic Ages instead of exploring D'ni. Give the movie writers some artistic freedom here, make some action. In the latter part of the movie, they go to Riven, Atrus falls in love with Catherine (make this classic). The movie could end with Atrus and Catherine escaping to Myst. Voila!
Falessan (Sep 27, 2012 at 12:56 AM):
I agree wholeheartedly. There's no way I could have said it better. Bravo!
DavidFuchs (Sep 30, 2012 at 7:02 PM):
I had noticed the mystmovie site was offline, but never took a chance to find out what happened until now. This page is the first result for myst movie, btw.
I think this is a really unfortunate turn of events, although personally I think it was unavoidable since they first put their energy into BoT, setting themselves up for a whole lot of difficulties.
To me the biggest narrative potential in the franchise is "Riven", the only problem being that "Myst" sets up the aforementioned in terms of motivations and how the Stranger becomes involved. To me, the simplest way (from a cinematic perspective) is to do something that would probably be anathema to a lot involved: shorten Myst and turn it into a very short intro into Riven. The Stranger arrives, pokes around, frees Atrus, -boom- events of Riven. The Stranger him (or her)self would have to be more defined anyhow.
I don't think you could look to it as a matter of "this doesn't fit the games" because ultimately if you want a good movie, you have to think about it in terms of "what makes a good movie", not a game or a book. Staying true to the spirit and essential qualities of the source material is more important than the exact sequences of X and Y.
I wish everyone involved all the best, and my deepest sympathies go to those who may justifiably feel betrayed or that they have wasted their time.
Samantha (Oct 2, 2012 at 7:56 PM):
Let's remember that Myst is Rand and Robyn Miller's creation. It is not Patrick or Adrian's brain child. Turning an already-written book and already created world into your own creation is a choice -- and having it taken away from you may be sad because you chose to devote your time to it, but really, it's not your story to (re)write.
I was obsessed with Myst as a fifth grader onward -- and I would personally love to see a Myst movie. I loved The Book of Ti'ana in particular.
However, if I were the mastermind behind every nook and cranny of an amazing story, I wouldn't want a bunch of fanboys telling my story-- I'd want to do it myself.
I would want Dave Wingrove and the Millers in full creative control because they are the ones that created that world in the first place. They created the characters I fell in love with as a young girl. It only makes sense to me to have them put words to screen.
Andrew Plotkin (Oct 2, 2012 at 11:07 PM):
Okay, I'm going to put the brakes on that track of argument. (I put up this page to archive documents, not to become the forum for all community declarations about the topic.)
The Millers and Cyan get to make the final decisions; they own those rights; we all agree on that.
The picture you are putting forth, of "a bunch of fanboys" versus the original creator, is your projection; it really hasn't come up in the argument we've seen at all. The question is who the original creators will be collaborating with. That's their decision, but it's a decision, not a fort being stormed by amateurs. (Seventeen years ago, it was David Wingrove in that position -- the outsider, permitted in.)
If you want to make a Hollywood studio movie, and you're not already a big shot in the system, you have to work with the system. That means working with other people. Doing it all yourself is a different job -- it's called making a small indie movie. (Which, indeed, Robyn Miller is doing! But not about Myst. So, you know, that's another decision they clearly made.)
Esn (Oct 30, 2012 at 2:48 AM):
After seeing all this, I have absolutely no faith in this upcoming movie at all, even if it actually gets made. I've seen too many things like this and I have seen what the results turn out to be. It has been co-opted by the Hollywood in-crowd and is getting more co-opted as time goes on, and I honestly am no longer interested in what those people have to say. They are not people I like, they are not people that I want spend time with, they are not people whose cinematic neuroses and opinions I would spend my money to watch.
Taylor (Oct 31, 2012 at 6:29 PM):
For me we already got 6 seasons of a fully produced MYST TV show. It was called LOST.
Mark (Nov 6, 2012 at 8:19 AM):
For you, Lost = Myst? You didn't get past the first game. You're opinion is meaningless. There's the door.
Andrew Plotkin (Nov 6, 2012 at 12:03 PM):
STOP there. This thread will not be a forum for personal attacks. Treat other posters with respect, or read silently.
Further comments of this sort will be locked, deleted, or edited. (I'll talk to Jmac about this -- he's the blogmaster so the final policy is up to him.)
Jason McIntosh (Nov 6, 2012 at 12:24 PM):
Hello, it's me, jmac, invoked from my hundred-year slumber by name.
I agree with Zarf's response. And, more to the point: This blog belongs to the authors of its posts. Readers are our guests. We love our guests and would be nothing without them, but we also expect them to act appropriately. Guests do not speak with the authority of we who run the blog, and telling other readers that they're not welcome here is simply out of line.
We'll let this comment (with attached meta-commentary) stand for now, but future infractions shall be subject to deletion, disemvoweling, or the like.
kalez (Nov 6, 2012 at 3:30 PM):
I think someone needs to bring the idea up to someone like Joss Whedon
Andrew Plotkin (Nov 6, 2012 at 5:21 PM):
Yah, well, everybody with a movie idea wants to talk to Joss Whedon this year. :)
The Desert Bird (Nov 18, 2012 at 6:26 AM):
Yes, I fully agree.
Shayne White (Nov 21, 2012 at 2:46 PM):
When I heard a while back that they were possibly making a movie based on Book of Ti'ana, I thought that was a very poor choice because it has little to do with any of the characters from the games themselves and has a very sad ending. I'm glad they're "rebooting" the project. Book of Atrus would be a MUCH better choice!!!!
Fangorn86 (Dec 4, 2012 at 3:28 AM):
Book of Atrus could make a good movie, or at least a good starting point for a movie (they might have to make a bigger focus on Riven and Myst Island, though). I really hope the drama between Adrian & Patrick and Isaac will not doom the movie, because a Myst movie might revitalize the game franchise. Though, we might have to accept some minor disagreements with the books/games, but that doesn't it'll be bad, as long as they keep the basic concepts that defines the Myst franchise.
Keep on making Myst movie, and make it good ;)
jeremy (Feb 6, 2013 at 6:28 PM):
I recall when hollywood put their hands all over Avatar: the last airbender. Total garbage was the end result...
Jos van Egmond (Mar 2, 2013 at 12:26 PM):
Thanks for posting this. I hope the new project is still going and become the movie that the most of us Myst fans will enjoy.
Daniel (Jun 11, 2013 at 4:36 PM):
Totally agree. While some of the Myst books were enjoyable, none were amazing and the last was terrible! I love the Myst world and games. Consider myself a fan but what always concerned me was that the books are not a good start for story. Plain and simple.
Rivenfan (Jul 5, 2013 at 4:09 AM):
My heart goes out to Patrick and especially Adrian. I don't like to take sides without knowing anything about the matter in question, but my sixth sense tells me Adrian's story of specifics was never a lie.
Our dreams should never be negotiated. Some dreams are by their very nature doomed to failure due to compromise being a need in some areas (like the business that Hollywood movie making is).
For something to really grow naturally it must be founded on a SHARED vision and SHARED values and with NO COMPROMISE on those agreed upon values. Otherwise the world of shark mentality will just eat you up.
I'd love to see Richard Vander Wende and Robyn Miller's take on Myst movie. Even though I loved BoT at the time I read it, I don't know how well it would translate into a film, but I bet Adrian and Patrick had something interesting to explore, at the very least.
I don't really associate CyanWorlds with Myst anymore. And I certainly don't trust them to help create a good Myst movie. My enthusiasm for this project died the original creators' departure.
Fil (Jul 13, 2013 at 10:40 AM):
It's too bad no one seems to be able to get past the drama and accusations and realize that there's a great wealth of creativity going unused in the Myst saga...that there is a loss to the fans and potential fans and a wonderful story to be told.
This petty squabbling is delaying a project that should have been completed long ago. There is a finite amount of time wherein this movie will have a dedicated core of Myst enthusiasts to help it be profitable. I think someone needs to put their head down and Get 'er done!
Andrew Plotkin (Jul 13, 2013 at 12:11 PM):
Once again, this is not the thread for getting judgmental. Nor for telling Cyan what they "should have" done, or should be doing. If you want to communicate that, send them private email. For us to sit around complaining to each other that we know better -- that's how fans get a reputation for being whiners.
It's easy to say "petty squabbling" when you're sitting at home wishing that a movie would magically appear.
Mark (Jul 23, 2013 at 10:13 AM):
It's been a year now, anymore news?
Andrew Plotkin (Jul 23, 2013 at 4:51 PM):
I will add a note if there is any solid news.
In fact, there has been no news of any reliability level.
Øystein Færder (Aug 30, 2013 at 2:40 AM):
I agree with Andrew: don't judge so easily. It's easy for us to take in all the emotional words from Adrian and judge the other part. But who knows, maybe Cyan's decision was the only right decision to do. None of us has seen Isaac's ideas for Myst movie script. For all we know he's coming up with a brilliant script which both respects the Myst canon (at least enough to make it acceptable for us die-hard Myst fans) and catch the greater audience.
And, btw, Book of Ti'ana is a nice book for us Myst readers, but a BoT movie will not show the viewers the essence of what makes Myst universe special. More than 90 % of the story takes place in the cavern. The movie should present the viewers with Ages, linking books, prison books etc. (which makes Book of Atrus more representative).
I still keep the hopes up for CyanWorlds and for Myst. A Myst reboot might be what we need :)
SirenDrake (Oct 5, 2013 at 1:38 PM):
I think everyone will agree - even the tinseltown moguls - that any Myst movie made should preserve those elements that made the Myst franchise special. But if you get six Myst fans together in a room to nail down the specifics of what those elements are, you would probably get six different answers. I hurt for Adrian and Patrick, but without seeing their movie or at least their script, I can have no idea whether or not it would have been any good. I do know that, as Andrew said, you simply cannot make a movie from a book without some changes. The different medium requires it. As respectful as Peter Jackson tried to be to the original trilogy, he made changes for his Lord of the Rings trilogy of films, and for the most part, I agree with the changes he made. And his films certainly had mass appeal. Mass appeal does not necessarily mean poor quality. And as Andrew has also pointed out more than once, even Cyan Worlds changed things about their backstory and how linking worked when it improved gameplay. So it's a delicate and difficult balance to strike, respect for the original source material and producing a story that works in a different medium and will actually sell, and different people are going to have different ideas about what should and shouldn't be changed, and different people are going to have different opinions about the end results. For that matter, it's perfectly possible that Adrian and Patrick could have made an excellent movie with their script and that Isaac and the studio moguls could also make an excellent but very different movie. But even if Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings movies had been awful, I don't think they would have damaged the appeal and standing of the books. Of course at this point in time, an awful Myst movie might spell the death of the franchise, but unless a Myst movie resurrects it, I'm not sure it has much life left in it anyway. And I say this as a lifelong Myst fan who still considers the franchise to be the best video games ever made.
I do hope there will be no more angry petitions to Cyan like the one linked above threatening to "unmake" the company by the fans that made them. After all, Cyan Worlds stayed true to its artistic vision for Uru throughout six long years and bankrupted the company. Then Cyan continued to invest time and resources in resurrecting Uru for the next nine years, in any way that was available to them. The end results of fifteen years of integrity to their artistic vision has been a company that is a shadow of what it once was and that as far as I can tell is now doing little more than porting twenty year old games to new hardware and producing simplistic combat games with cutesy graphics and none of the imagination and creativity that their flagship games had. At this point, admonishing Cyan Worlds to be "true" to the artistry of Myst in a movie they aren't even making themselves seems cruel to me.
I WILL NOT judge Ryan Miller for wanting to keep a roof over his family's heads, put food on the table, and set aside a nest egg for retirement. After giving the world the best game series ever made, he certainly ought to get something out of it besides grief.
So I am going to hope for the best, prepare for the worst, and try not to lose sleep over things that might never happen and over which I have no control.
SirenDrake (Oct 5, 2013 at 1:53 PM):
RAND Miller. Darnit. I know better than that. :-(
SirenDrake (Oct 24, 2013 at 11:35 AM):
As I said above, the Myst franchise may not have a lot of life left in it unless it is resurrected by a movie, but I am thrilled to report that Cyan is not yet out of the running!
Cyan has launched a kickstarter in an attempt to fund their next big project without turning to a publisher for funding. This will allow Cyan to maintain its independence and the artistic integrity that Cyan's fans expect. They have already reached about half their goal, but the more funding they get, the more stuff they can produce for the game, and the more ports they can do for other platforms. It is NOT a Myst title, which I think is excellent news. I am delighted that Cyan has a chance to do something new and fresh. Martiniere's concept art looks beautiful and what I have heard of the story is intriguing.
I do apologize for hijacking the thread, but this is the most exciting news I have heard from the game industry in a lot of years.
The game is called Obduction. A quick search on Cyan, Obduction, and kickstarter should take you to the website.
Andrew Plotkin (Oct 24, 2013 at 11:38 AM):
Possibly you did not notice the current top post on this blog. :)
Nick (Apr 25, 2014 at 12:38 PM):
Don't want to feel like I'm beating a dead horse, but the lack of ANY news over the last three years would lead me to believe that either the film has gone nowhere, or that the film is so off the beaten track conceptually that the creators don't see the point in talking to the fanbase anymore. Which would make one wonder why you would even bother using the franchise, but what do I know?
Regardless, it would seem to me that the change in leadership didn't make things happen any faster. I suspect the studios didn't become any more interested after Adrian left.
Andrew Plotkin (Apr 25, 2014 at 1:43 PM):
Maybe no progress; maybe some progress that's too incomplete and boring to talk about. ("We got back rights to X" is not worth posting about if development has not progressed on other fronts.)
Nobody pays me to guess what's happening behind closed doors, so I just leave this movie idea in the "no news, nothing to see" bucket.
Andrew Plotkin (Oct 7, 2014 at 2:03 PM):
No movie news, but a TV show deal has been signed: http://gameshelf.jmac.org/2014/10/myst-tv-series-suddenly-appears-on-the-horizon/