You can say that Philip K Dick movie adaptations are ubiquitous. And they could soon get Ubik-uitous. And interactive.
The next Dick film (and probably the most faithful ever) is Richard Linklater’s A Scanner Darkly, which finally opens in selected cities this weekend. Today was the New York City press day for the film, and producer/animator Tommy Pollatta talked about his work on the movie, which uses a rotoscoping style similar to what he and Linklater did with Waking Life (a movie hated by all the CHUD people except me). Pollatta also mentioned what he might be doing next – an adaptation of Dick’s psychic/moonbase/cryogenics/time travel novel Ubik, named one of the 100 best novels since 1923 by Time Magazine.
But here’s the rub – Pollatta may not be just making a movie of the book. He’s looking to make a video game of the book. There was a Ubik video game already (which apparently blows), but Pollatta’s vision is really an interactive movie. “Interactivity is fascinating to me,” said the animator, before quickly noting that this is only something he’s thinking about, and nothing firm has been set up.
What if something firm did happen? As Pollatta mentioned at the press day, there was no real precedent for A Scanner Darkly – Linklater and his animators just forged ahead. Pollatta seems like the kind of guy who would leap into a project like this, finally bringing us the interactive filmmaking we’ve been promised for more than a decade. And how fitting would it be if a Dick movie helped usher in the next phase of filmmaking?