Information dissemination has exploded in the last three decades, and so has electronic entertainment. It’s hard to know what know what legendary author Ray Bradbury would think of it, but HBO’s point of view is clear: it all has to burn. Or at least, so it seems in the new trailer for their adaptation of the classic Fahrenheit 451.
For those unfamiliar with the book (though you really should read it, it’s a classic), the book looks at a dystopia where firemen don’t put out fires, they start them. Their mission is to destroy all books, leaving the masses uninformed and totally reliant on massive, wall-spanning TVs. The story centers on Guy Montag, a fireman who suddenly switches sides, secretly reading books and opening his mind to a new world.
Michael B. Jordan stars as Guy Montag, with Michael Shannon playing Montag’s boss, Captain Beatty. The film also stars Sofia Boutella as Clarisse McClellan, Martin Donovan as Commander Nyari, Laura Harrier as Millie Montag, and Lilly Singh as Raven. The film will be directed by Ramin Bahrani, a film festival darling who also wrote the screenplay.
It is interesting how the trailer frames the world of the film in one that is against “truth” and “facts” and focuses on patriotic rhetoric. The message seems clear, but it will be pivotal to see what role the internet plays in the film. Will it be tightly controlled and censored, or will it too fall under the regime of slash and burn? Hopefully, the film will be long enough to do some of that interesting world building.
Fahrenheit 451 debuts on HBO sometime in May 2018.