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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
This has moved to the Peacock network.

‘Brave New World’: Demi Moore Set To Recur In USA Drama Series


Demi Moore has booked a recurring role in Brave New World, the upcoming USA Network drama series from UCP and Amblin Television based on the Aldous Huxley’s groundbreaking 1932 novel.
Written by David Wiener, Grant Morrison and Brian Taylor, Brave New World imagines a utopian society that has achieved peace and stability through the prohibition of monogamy, privacy, money, family and history itself. Alden Eisenreich, Harry Lloyd and Jessica Brown Findlay also star.


Moorewill play Linda, the brash, hard-living mother of John the Savage (Ehrenreich).


As citizens of New London, Bernard Marx (Lloyd) and Lenina Crowne (Brown Findlay) have only ever known a rigid social order, a perfect pharmaceutical called Soma, and a culture of instant gratification and ubiquitous sex. Curious to explore life beyond the strictures of their society, the two New Worlders embark on a vacation to the Savage Lands, where they become embroiled in a harrowing and violent rebellion. Bernard and Lenina are rescued by John the Savage, who escapes with them back to New London. John’s arrival in the New World soon threatens to disrupt its utopian harmony, leaving Bernard and Lenina to grapple with the repercussions. The three become entwined in a fraught relationship that awakens them to the dangers of their own conditioning.


Moore earned a Best Actress Golden Globe nom for Ghost and Globe and Emmy noms for If These Walls Could Talk and starred in such films as G.I. Jane, A Few Good Men, Striptease, Disclosure and Indecent Proposal. Her recent credits include TV’s Animals and Empire and the features Love Sonia and Rough Night. Repped by CAA, Untitled Entertainment and Gang Tyre, she next appears opposite Ed Helms in the comedy Corporate Animals, which premiere at Sundance this year.


Brave New World moved to USA Network from NBCUniversal sibling Syfy with a straight-to-series order and a co-licensing deal with a digital platform to distribute it. UCP was a pioneer in forging international deals with streaming platforms, which helped a number of its projects get straight-to-series orders, more recently Syfy’s Nightflyers and USA’s Treadstone.


https://deadline.com/2019/06/demi-moore-brave-new-world-in-recurring-role-1202635332/
 

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Looks pretty good. I'll check that out.
 

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Eh... not quite sure what to think. Not how I view the novel in my head, but I guess it could work -- getting generic tv series vibes from it though. But if reviews are decent, I'll check it out.

Is this a limited series? I see 9 episodes which seems like an extreme stretch of the book material to begin with.

I might also feel better about this if the Syfy channel wasn't involved in its original development.
 

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Eh... not quite sure what to think. Not how I view the novel in my head, but I guess it could work -- getting generic tv series vibes from it though. But if reviews are decent, I'll check it out.

Is this a limited series? I see 9 episodes which seems like an extreme stretch of the book material to begin with.

I might also feel better about this if the Syfy channel wasn't involved in its original development.


Yeah I watched the trailer with the sound off, and nothing was there to make me think it was BNW. One of my favorites though, so I'll give it a shot.
 

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Eh... not quite sure what to think. Not how I view the novel in my head, but I guess it could work
The book was written in 1932 and many of its ideas about "the future" seem pretty corny today (a problem all science fiction eventually faces). This show looks like it's taking some of the core ideas of the property and running with them in a more modern direction, which is about as much as anyone could expect a reboot to do.

It looks better than the 1980 TV movie, that's for certain.


Sweet leotards, though.
 

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The book was written in 1932 and many of its ideas about "the future" seem pretty corny today (a problem all science fiction eventually faces). This show looks like it's taking some of the core ideas of the property and running with them in a more modern direction, which about as much as anyone could expect a reboot to do.

It looks better than the 1980 TV movie, that's for certain.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfHtPUfwM34

Sweet leotards, though.

That could partly be it, my brain may be expecting more of a retro-style future ... can't quite put my finger on it, but it just seems somewhat off from what I expected.

I am also getting a generic TV vibe from this ... sort of like if this is a watered down NBC/Syfy version of the novel. And I may be very wrong, we can only tell so much from a trailer. Perhaps bias is creeping in since I know where the project originated. We'll see soon enough. I'm not quite sure how they managed to get nine episodes out of the novel unless they really, really expand the storyline... and if not limited... umm... not sure how it will work.

But yeah, at least it definitely looks better than the previous attempt.
 

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I'm not quite sure how they managed to get nine episodes out of the novel unless they really, really expand the storyline... and if not limited... umm... not sure how it will work.
How did Westworld get three seasons out of an 88-minute movie? I don't expect that this will be "faithful" to the book beyond borrowing the basic premise. The question is whether they can find a good story to set in that world.
 
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How did Westworld get three seasons out of an 88-minute movie? I don't expect that this will be "faithful" to the book beyond borrowing the basic premise. The question is whether they can find a good story to set in that world.
That's true, but I wouldn't mind a faithful retelling of "the book" with high production and proper casting and funding. It's worth doing IMO, but that's not really a thing these days. All these new networks need eyeballs. A one or two part movie is here and gone too quickly.
 

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How did Westworld get three seasons out of an 88-minute movie? I don't expect that this will be "faithful" to the book beyond borrowing the basic premise. The question is whether they can find a good story to set in that world.
Unlike WW, Brave New World does appear to be following the plot of novel (based on desc + characters). So it's not doing the vague premise-y thing like Westworld did, at least based on the info out there.

Of course they could expand things, or change some stuff around... just thinking aloud that if faithful at all to the novel, it probably needs a lot of stretching to get to 9 episodes. And if they plan multi-season... umm.. yeah, guess that is when we talk about them simply using the premise.
 

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That's true, but I wouldn't mind a faithful retelling of "the book" with high production and proper casting and funding. It's worth doing IMO, but that's not really a thing these days. All these new networks need eyeballs. A one or two part movie is here and gone too quickly.
Such a thing would probably have to be a theatrical feature (when this pandemic is over, of course).

I can understand wanting that. Personally, I don't have any particular attachment to the book, which I read in high school 30 years ago and haven't given much thought to since. Given what we're presented with, my interest is whether it amounts to a good TV series or not, regardless of faithfulness to the source material.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Review has spoilers in it.

Spoilers below.

'Brave New World': TV Review

The long-gestating Aldous Huxley adaptation about a dystopian future society, starring Jessica Brown Findlay and Alden Ehrenreich, debuts on Peacock.
There's no counting the number of crises currently plaguing America, but a hair-raising uniformity and orderliness among its people isn't one of them. The past five or so years have, in fact, given us myriad reasons to fear the ongoing fragmentation and polarization of our nation, with technology accelerating the creation and distribution of "alternative facts" and algorithmically curated realities.

The coronavirus pandemic is only the latest example of this tendency toward fracture and balkanization, as one marginalized group is blamed for the disease; other marginalized groups are left to suffer the bulk of its ravages; easy and effective measures like mask-wearing fall prey to the culture wars; and thousands of opportunists exploit the uncertainty and anxiety surrounding the contagion, chipping away at expertise, consensus and social cooperation to found and swell their own information cults.

All of which is to say, there are plenty of dystopian elements to be mined from today. And yet here comes Peacock's Brave New World to warn us of a world in which technology has ensured that there's too much conformity, too much sharing, too many orgies (more on that soon). If creator David Wiener thought about why Aldous Huxley's 1932 novel is relevant to 2020, viewers aren't clued in on the answer.

The nine-part debut season feels like it's built on miscalculation atop miscalculation, but the gravest one is that the citizens of New London are effectively extraterrestrials. They resemble no human society to date: There are no parents, spouses, children or, really, friends. Monogamy is verboten, while marriages and families are the outdated practices of the "Savages," who are coded as poor (white) Americans and live on a reservation that New Londoners treat like a zoo.

The civilized do have bosses, one of whom reprimands an employee by pulling up a hologram of her having sex and calling her "selfish" for doing it with the same person 22 times, as happens in an early scene. (Sleeping with a single partner means depriving others of the pleasures of one's body. The solution, as it is for practically any problem in New London: Get thee to an orgy.)

As in any dystopia on screen — and Brave New World is plotted as rotely as any of them — the characters we follow are the square pegs. Each person in New London is genetically modified, then trained from childhood, to conform to one of five strictly hierarchical castes. As an Alpha-Plus, Bernard Marx (Harry Lloyd, Counterpart) is at the top of the heap, but his task of indoctrinating all those below him to believe that everyone is happy in New London is hampered by his own deep unhappiness.

Bernard is smitten with Lenina Crowne (Jessica Brown Findlay, Downton Abbey), the Beta-plus whose aforementioned moments of intimacy he threw back in her face. But when the two visit the Savage Lands, where he hopes to woo her, she meets someone more intriguing: John the Savage (Alden Ehrenreich, Solo: A Star Wars Story), who has experience with all kinds of things foreign to her, like music with lyrics, and a mother (Demi Moore), and hours upon hours of moping. It's the last one that grabs her most: New Londoners pop feel-good pills at the slightest discomfort. Emotions are an exoticism.

Those spherical, translucent pills — in yellow, orange and red, signifying different levels of intensity — dot New London, but each resident also carries around their own metallic Pez dispenser. The ubiquitous clicking noise of pearl-clutching New Londoners reacting to small incivilities is one of the few ways that the writers seem to have thought through what it feels like to live in this society. In contrast, a scene in which a character doesn't understand what blood is strains credulity — surely even in a designed-to-death utopia like this one, a child has tripped and skinned their knee before. And in a world where there's both constant rutting and constant displays of power by the Alphas against those below them, it feels flat-out improbable that, say, the worst thing that might happen to a lower-ranking woman is that she wouldn't orgasm during a sexual encounter.

Too much of Brave New World is the writers delighting in shocking the audience with how strange New London's customs are. No one has ever cried before or knows what "a virginity" is. Bernard's superior (Sen Mitsuji) gives him a performance review while the employee is on the toilet. Everyone is young and hot, and when they reach a certain age, they're sent to the crematorium — not that the show dares to consider the darkness of that premise. That's the thing about New London — its practices are so extreme, their ramifications so unexplored and thus their resonance to our world so limited that anyone who lives there is too outlandish to care about. The few times they do approach humanity, it simply feels like a narrative contrivance.

John eventually ends up in New London, which he has a stronger connection to than his humble existence in the Savage Lands would suggest. If there's one believable thing about the show's characterizations, it's John's conflicting desires to take advantage of his unexpected privileged position and to do away with New London's cruel class system. But unbeknownst to him, New London is already crumbling from the inside — with a disgruntled Epsilon named CJack60 (Joseph Morgan) ready to fight, leaders (Nina Sosanya, Ed Stoppard) too afraid to confront its problems head-on and party (i.e., orgy) designer Helm (Hannah John-Kamen) providing endless distraction for the masses. (So why aren't the group-sex scenes remotely sexy?)

Also endlessly distracting, but in the good way: the sleek, futuristic production design by David Lee, which makes New London look like a kind of exclusive, ostentatiously eco-friendly airport only millionaires would be allowed to set foot in, and the corresponding costume designs by Susie Coulthard that are part-sticky sexbot, part-Eileen Fisher's 2050 spring collection.

Huxley wrote Brave New World to warn readers of technology-assisted totalitarian control. The effect of this adaptation, in contrast, seems to be reassurance: that we, unlike the pathetic saps of the future, have the freedom to marry, have kids, feel sad and not attend orgies if we don't want to. Hooray? It doesn't stop our world from feeling any less like a dystopia, not that the show's writers have anything to say on that condition. If this lavish but lifeless production is Peacock's most prestigious original offering, well, there's always Jim and Pam.

Cast: Jessica Brown Findlay, Harry Lloyd, Alden Ehrenreich, Hannah John-Kamen, Demi Moore, Sen Mitsuji, Joseph Morgan, Nina Sosanya, Kylie Bunbury

Creator: David Wiener

Showrunner: David Wiener

Premieres Wednesday, Jul. 15, on Peacock

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/review/brave-new-world-review-1303112
 

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There's no counting the number of crises currently plaguing America, but a hair-raising uniformity and orderliness among its people isn't one of them. The past five or so years have, in fact, given us myriad reasons to fear the ongoing fragmentation and polarization of our nation, with technology accelerating the creation and distribution of "alternative facts" and algorithmically curated realities.

The coronavirus pandemic is only the latest example of this tendency toward fracture and balkanization, as one marginalized group is blamed for the disease; other marginalized groups are left to suffer the bulk of its ravages; easy and effective measures like mask-wearing fall prey to the culture wars; and thousands of opportunists exploit the uncertainty and anxiety surrounding the contagion, chipping away at expertise, consensus and social cooperation to found and swell their own information cults.
OK, so I get the argument this writer is trying to make. The counter-argument is that Brave New World is what happens when one of those fragmented groups (i.e. the top 1%) wins out and suppresses all the others. This dystopia is the result of white gentrification taken to the furthest extreme.
 

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Here's another not so great review:
https://www.rollingstone.com/tv/tv-reviews/brave-new-world-peacock-review-1027166/


Kind of touches upon what I feared based on just the trailer. Simplified takeaway:

But this adaptation, developed by Grant Morrison, Brian Taylor, and David Wiener, never digs below those polished surfaces, either in exploring the characters or the story’s themes.
---

Mostly, though, the show treats the book’s big questions as excuses for spectacles of sex and violence.
 

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I watched the first two episodes last night (keep in mind that Peacock launched at 12 AM PT which is 9 PM PT). I like the first two episodes and the spin on Huxley's novel. It's not an adaptation. Barely recognized Demi Moore playing the mother of a principal character in "Savageland".
 

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Discussion Starter #16
‘Brave New World’: Showrunner David Wiener On Adapting Aldous Huxley’s Dystopian Novel For Peacock
By Peter White

There’s something quite apt about a book that explores the issue of instant gratification becoming the centerpiece of a new streaming service.

This is Brave New World and it launches today on Peacock.

Showrunner David Wiener tells Deadline that he was struck by how prescient author Aldous Huxley’s 1932 book was. “Huxley obviously foresaw a lot of what we would do with technology, but the one thing that he probably couldn’t foresee was how far we would go in terms of the information revolution and social media, and those things seem to be like a very natural extension of exactly what Huxley was warning us against,” he says.

The series, which imagines a utopian society that has achieved peace and stability through the prohibition of monogamy, privacy, money, family, and history, stars Solo: A Star Wars Story’s Alden Ehrenreich, Game of Thrones’ Harry Lloyd, Downton Abbey’s Jessica Brown Findlay and Demi Moore.

As citizens of New London, Bernard Marx, played by Lloyd, and Lenina Crowne, played by Brown Findlay, embark on a vacation to the Savage Lands, where they become embroiled in a harrowing and violent rebellion. Bernard and Lenina are rescued by John the Savage, played by Ehrenreich, who escapes with them back to New London. John’s arrival in the New World soon threatens to disrupt its utopian harmony, leaving Bernard and Lenina to grapple with the repercussions.

The project has been more than five years in development and has gone through various networks and writers. Homecoming co-exec producer Wiener came on board in February 2018, after a script from Grant Morrison and Brian Taylor.

“The book is a challenging adaptation anyway in that, to a certain degree, he wrote a book that’s an exploration of philosophical ideas, but doesn’t necessarily translate dramatically. Then there’s other hugely problematic aspects of the book, as well, in terms of how he deals with some of his female characters, with how the book intersects with race, and those were things that we needed to apply a more evolved, modern view of it to, and obviously, our sense of utopia is different than what Huxley’s sense of a utopia was,” he admits.

The series takes some of Huxley’s ideas and updates them. “There were a lot of opportunities to take an idea of Huxley’s and then infuse it with our own sense. One great example is, in the book, his Savage Lands are in Anasazi Indian Reservation, and in our story, the savage lands become an adventure park. Both of them serve the same purpose, which is, you know, to reinforce the sense of superiority that people from the new world have when they come to the savage lands. I think that we found solutions that feel resonant today,” he adds.

Many of the themes in the book are still relevant today, but given the Coronavirus and the Black Lives Matters protests, some of them feel even more so than originally planned. “Huxley’s biggest fear was that we would become so sexually stimulated and pharmacologically numbed and distracted, that we wouldn’t look inside ourselves in an uncomfortable way and we wouldn’t look outside ourselves in terms of hierarchies and systems and history in a way that’s uncomfortable, and I think obviously we’re at a point now where it’s become very necessary for people to do that. Actually, it’s never been more necessary,” says Wiener.

The show was largely shot in the UK, at Dragon Studios and Bay Studios in Wales. Wiener says putting together the world was a “monumental undertaking” and lauded set designer David Lee and VFX supervisor Tom Horton as well as the work done by ILM and Territory.

Owen Harris, who helmed Black Mirror: San Junipero, directs the first two episodes. “We really tried to imagine a world that was built according to the dogma of Brave New World. So, it’d be a place where there’s no privacy, so it’s a lot of glass, a lot of open spaces, and a place where the design of the world would push people into proximity to create the energy and connections that are necessary to kind of keep that social body vibrant and alive.”

But Wiener adds that he didn’t want to lean too far into the sci-fi element. “In part because we didn’t want to have a show that might feel dated in a couple years when you look back, and so we went with a more timeless and century modern art deco look, but we also wanted the show to be about the humanity of the characters and not about the trappings of the world itself.”

The show launches on Peacock, having gone through iterations at SyFy and USA Network and Wiener says it built the show to work with advertising, which it will on the NBCU’s ad-supported platform as well as on broadcasters around the world, including Comcast sibling Sky. “The irony isn’t lost on me that we’re making a television show, which is actually almost part of the same media that Huxley was concerned about, and so we don’t expect that irony to be lost on the audience, either, and so we do a lot of clever stuff in terms of making our own commercial bridges from the world of real-world advertising into our characters’ perspective as they consume advertising in their world,” he says.

The ending of the first season has been modified from the book, which also allows the team to plot more seasons in success. “Huxley himself wrote later about writing Brave New World, and upon reflection, he actually kind of questioned his own ending, and I think that, at some point, you know, we actually diverge from the narrative of the novel in such a fashion that it would feel inorganic to try to bend it back to where the novel finishes,” he says.

Wiener says that he is now thinking about a possible second season. “At the end of the [first] season, we leave a lot of interesting questions and open doors that are available. I think will be a lot of fun to walk through,” he adds.

Brave New World is produced by UCP, a division of Universal Studio Group, in association with Amblin Television. Wiener executive produces the series and serves as showrunner. Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey, co-presidents of Amblin Television, also serve as executive producers. Owen Harris and Grant Morrison also executive produce. Brian Taylor executive produces on the pilot episode.

https://deadline.com/2020/07/brave-new-world-showrunner-david-wiener-peacock-1202985710/
 

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I'm inclined to check this show out and am not too bothered by the lack of 4k at launch, but the limited stereo audio via Android TV devices (like my Shield TV) is really off-putting. It's an embarrassment that they couldn't even get 5.1 ready when the damn app has already been available on Comcast X1 and Flex devices for the past three months.
 
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