Movie 'Treatment'

Having taken the plunge and had someone in the movie industry take a look at Out of Time and do an appraisal of how it could be turned into a movie, video show, or perhaps a miniseries, it is very flattering to get a positive response, with an honest assessment. So, I went ahead and asked for a professional script writer to take a look and do a "Treatment". In essence this is a synopsis of what would go into a movie. Here is the overview - 

 Title: Out of Time 

Author: Patrick G. Cox 

Treatment By: Robin Campbell 

Mission Statement: 

Out of Time is a true science fiction epic – spanning multiple storylines in two centuries, there is enough in the book for two movies, or even a miniseries. The challenge in adapting it is figuring out which plot lines, characters, and other details can be condensed and streamlined into three acts without sacrificing the main thrust and spirit of the story. 

While many of the scenes that take place in 1804 provide great detail and background to the lives that Harry, Ferghal and Danny leave behind, this treatment has greatly diminished the amount of time spent on these scenes. A choice has been made to integrate the information about what happened to the Spartan into the exposition laid out for Harry when he arrives on the Vanguard. While this does violate the “show, don’t tell” rule, it moves the story along faster and places the burden of the consequences on Harry and his friends. 

Much of what happens on the Vanguard has been excised out of concerns for running time and clarity. The author has gone to great pains to fully explore just how a large starship runs; conversely, there are dozens of characters in the book, each with a very specific job, each with a name. For the sake of clarity (and also with an eye to a budget), many characters have been left out or folded into other, more central characters. For example, the team of scientists onboard the Vanguard has been trimmed dramatically. Additionally, to avoid confusion, James Heron has been made a Commodore from the beginning, rather than being promoted mid-story. Danny has been definitively relegated to a secondary character, due to the fact that he is not present for many of the major scenes including Harry and Ferghal. 

Many of the details about the Consortium’s misdeeds have been left out or streamlined in favor of moving the plot along; the same goes for details about the Lacertians. In the Author Questionnaire there was a mention of androids on Vanguard; since the word “android” appears nowhere in the manuscript, that detail has been done away with entirely. 

Even though the story deals some of the more outlandish aspects of science fiction, with events that are difficult or impossible to explain, at the center Out of Time are a group of recognizably human characters. Their journey draws the reader/viewer in and doesn’t let go. For an epic story, these grounding forces are the most important component.

I must say, I'm delighted and flattered by the summary and reading through the complete document (sorry folks, not repeated here, but ...), the writer has picked up the elements I had hoped for, and done a superb job of outlining how and what would be done to produce a script for it.

Now then. Anyone interested in taking this further? 

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