You'll Be Watching Big Brother in New '1984' Film

By Gerald Lynch on at

George Orwell's dystopian classic is making its way to the silver screen for a third time. 1984 is to be made into a feature film by Sony, with director Paul Greengrass (The Bourne Supremacy, The Bourne Ultimatum, Captain Phillips) attached to direct.

What with recent years' NSA controversies, the rise of web anarchists Anonymous and the WikiLeaks saga, it's an appropriate time for a 1984 film. The novel depicts a future in which a totalitarian government runs what was once Britain with an iron fist, using invasive surveillance systems to monitor and punish potential dissidents. It introduced the concept of a "Big Brother" figure, watching our every move, violent censorship enforced by "Thought Police" and the disturbing "Room 101", where a person's greatest fears are used against them.

Though the film will use a brand new script by James Graham (whose book formed the basis of Finding Neverland), 1984 has previously been turned into a film in 1956 and in the actual year 1984. This later adaptation is the most well-known with John Hurt starring as lead character Winston and Richard Burton as O'Brien. Neither, however, truly lived up to the novel's terrifying heights, so while it's a big undertaking for Greengrass, there's an opportunity here to outdo the previous adaptations. [Deadline]