While many are familiar with A Brave New World, not everyone is aware that Huxley himself has written over fifty books. Here are some of his more obscure works.
Leonardo DiCaprio, along with his production company Appian Way, is teaming up with In Good Company Films to develop a new series titled Island, based on the novel by Aldous Huxley.
A television adaptation of Aldous Huxley’s 1932 novel Brave New World is currently on NBC’s new streaming service Peacock, and it is a fresh take on a tired genre. Often compared to George Orwell’s 1984, Huxley’s Brave New World is also considered to be a work of political prophecy, and is, in my opinion, at least, far more worrisome, mainly because of a single widely known phrase: “opium of the people”.
Originally said by Karl Marx, the “opium of the people” he was referring to was organized religion, criticizing it for how it reduced the immediate suffering of the oppressed with a pleasant illusion, keeping them in their low status and preventing them from seeing that they’re being oppressed in the first place. While in Huxley’s Brave New World religion is an extinct practice, the “opium of the people” is replaced with something new, and a far more literal interpretation of the metaphor: soma, which is a pharmaceutical drug that the population take regularly to chemically alter their brains and make unpleasant thoughts disappear.
The show largely follows the same plot as the book, where a woman by the name of Lenine Crowne and a man by the name of Bernard Marx take a vacation to what are considered the “Savage Lands”, which are the few areas on the globe where the authority of the World State does not reach, and where the people still live by our current practices, including but not limited to monogamy, family, currency, and religion, which are all considered to be primitive and outdated by the people of New London. There, Bernard and Lenine meet a woman named Linda and her son John, and through a series of events I won’t spoil for you, John ends up in New London, and must learn how to adapt to living in a strict social hierarchy where any privacy is forbidden and love is considered a sickness.
Compared to George Orwell’s 1984, I personally consider Huxley’s Brave New World to be a far grimmer depiction of our future. In a society where emotion is chemically castrated, art is dead and virtues such as generosity and sacrifice are non existent. It is an empty society, one of no culture and one that holds no values. In this way, Brave New World is not so much a political prophecy but a societal one, and one that the show adapts to television quite well, not overburdening the audience with copious amounts of exposition but instead devoting enough time to the characters for them to organically address Huxley’s themes of societal segregation, rampant consumerism, the incompatibility of happiness and truth and, of course, the dangers of an all-powerful state.
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Golden Globes, Game of Thrones, and Downton Abbey are all heading to the same place: Brave New World.
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The Jakarta Post reports that Demi Moore, two time Golden Globe nominee for Ghost and If These Walls Could Talk and whose had a role in classics like The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, and A Few Good Men, will be playing Linda in the upcoming TV adaptation of Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World.
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For those unaware of the story, Bernard Marx and Lenina Crowe, two New Worlders, journey to the Savage Lands where they meet John the Savage, a man raised outside the confines of their society, and his mother Linda.
As for the rest, well, you’ll have to read the book!
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Behind the scenes we have David Wiener, a writer on Amazon’s Homecoming, as series showrunner and executive producer.
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Owen Harris, who directed Black Mirror season three episode San Junipero and season five episode Striking Vipers, will direct the first two episodes and also executive produce the series.
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Comic book legend Grant Morrison and Brian Taylor, who worked to bring us the outstanding series Happy! to the small screen are also executive producing.
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The final two executive producers are Amblin Television co-presidents Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey.
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Looks like the adaptation is in good hands! Any thoughts Huxley?
“There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception.”
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No one can compete with the swagger of Harrison Ford. It goes without saying that his portrayal of everyone’s favorite smuggler is iconic. Whether he was blasting Greedo or affirming a woman’s love for him by simply uttering “I know…” Han Solo epitomized the swashbuckling aspect of Star Wars. An aspect that has been cemented in nostalgia and generational angst for forty or so years. It would take a truly courageous actor to take on the role of Han Solo in the wake of Harrison Ford’s lightsaber to the gut departure—or it would take Alden Ehrenreich.
He did alright; to be fair, Solo: A Star Wars Story was an enjoyable film. With a solid script, charming cast (Donald Glover killing it as Lando) and decent execution; you can’t hate it. Ehrenreich succeeds as a Han Solo all his own, he doesn’t try to be Harrison Ford because you can’t. Still, it didn’t meet the expectations of Star Wars fans and Ehrenreich has basically been unemployed ever since. Until now. In an article on Deadline‘s website, it was reported that Alden Ehrenreich is set to play the lead role in a series adaption of Aldous Huxley’s novel, Brave New World.
The series has been attached to various networks over the course of the past few months but is now apparently going to be a flagship series for the upcoming NBCU streaming platform, set to launch in 2020. The series is being written and developed by David Wiener (Fear the Walking Dead), Grant Morrison, and Brian Taylor and is aforementioned based on Huxley’s groundbreaking novel, Brave New World—the story of a dystopian (or *spoiler alert* failed utopia) society which is basically the result of a lack of individuality or identity. Kind of like an actor being held hostage to his shortcomings as Han Solo…
The novel’s synopsis is as follows (via Goodreads):
Brave New World is a dystopian novel written in 1931 by English author Aldous Huxley and published in 1932. Largely set in a futuristic World State of genetically modified citizens and an intelligence-based social hierarchy, the novel anticipates huge scientific developments in reproductive technology, sleep-learning, psychological manipulation, and classical conditioning that are combined to make a utopian society that goes challenged only by a single outsider.
Ehrenreich will play John the Savage, a man who lives outside of the system and drives society towards its “corruption.” It will be interesting to see what Brave New World‘s quasi-timeless themes say about contemporary society; the series is rumored to take place in 2054 as opposed to 1932. The series will run ten episodes with Owen Harris (Black Mirror) set to direct at least one episode. Expect some trippy shit.
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