Nerd Alert! Anne McCaffrey's Dragonriders of Pern Movie Is Actually Happening

Dragonriders300.jpgIn news that might have caused my fifth grade self to break out in an awkward dance of joy, there is actual movement on a long-attempted adaptation of Anne McCaffrey's The Dragonriders of Pern series. X-Men writer David Hayter will reportedly adapt Dragonflight, the first novel in McCaffrey's celebrated book series set on the planet of Pern, where generations of humans form telepathic links with fire-breathing dragons to defend themselves from a deadly enemy known as Thread.

Allow me a moment to geek out over McCaffrey's Pern series, which has been a staple of any sci-fi/fantasy-loving geek kid's personal library for decades. At least, it served as such for me; I spent my youthful days devouring every installment in McCaffrey's 19+ book series (she wrote additional Pern stories with son Todd). Though Hayter is starting with the first novel, originally published in 1968, there are literally generations upon generations of Pernese stories to tell, including more traditionally sci-fi-oriented origin tales. But embarking on this franchise, with its many potential sequels and prequels, should be no small commitment for whichever studios and production companies might eventually come on board.

According to HitFix, Don Murphy and Susan Montford's Angry Films are currently involved and production is slated to begin in early 2012, but there's no director or cast yet attached. And, as a warning to hopeful fans, remember that this is not the first time an attempt has been made to adapt the Pern saga for the screen; before current production company Copperheart Entertainment optioned the rights, The WB was attempting to make a version for television under Ronald D. Moore (Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Deep Space 9, Battlestar Galactica) and had even built Ruatha Hold and Benden Weyr sets before production was halted days before it began.

But with its blend of fantasy, romance, science fiction, and medieval-like setting, Pern is a fictional world rife for cinematic imagining. One would assume CG effects will be involved in the depiction of its dragons, who, bound to their human counterparts at birth, take flight to mate (trust me, it can get pretty hot what with the humans linked psychically on the ground) and fight the spores that rain down periodically upon the world, devouring everything organic in sight. Fans might hope that the adaptation has the budget to cover massive sets and casts on the scale of a Lord of the Rings, WETA-driven production -- or else have a director with a really good workaround plan.

More as it develops... in the meantime, where my Pern fans at? Chime in below.

· X-Men scribe David Hayter will adapt first 'Dragonriders of Pern' novel [HitFix]

[Original cover art by Michael Whelan]


  • At last BUT get the Guy who did the Hobbits he will do it Justice I'm sure Annie Mc Caffrey would approve

  • Ron Stetson says:

    Several clips on UTube but still no release date yet on movie insider

  • Been too long since the very thin on news but excited announcement. A two year period with nothing in the way of news usually means the project, for whatever reason has died. Just admit it or please prove me wrong.

  • Stan Guyer says:

    I have often wondered if and when a film might come alone, it is good to know that it just might happen now.

  • Bobbie Spivey says:

    I'm still trying to make sure I've read all of the books - they publish and republish with a different cover and all the titles are blending together - I kept all the ones I read - and have printed up a chron list, but it is dated 2008.. Todd has been busy since then, I am sure. And he is doing justice to his Mom's dream and story lines.

    • Sam says:

      No, no Todd is not. He is preforming a gross felony act to the series that is best described only in slasher movie terms. It is best to just avoid them and the whole perversion of Pernese culture.

  • Diane says:

    I hope the screenwriter stays true to the story. Will this be with real actors (excluding the dragons) or will the whole film be animation? Either way I look forward to this actually happening.

  • Martha says:

    OMH I want them to make this movie so badly. I would really love to see them do Moreta, Dragonlady of Pern.

  • Michael Amos says:

    I really hope this happens. Another of her books 'Pegasus in Flight' would be so damn awesome as a movie and her story telling and scene setting is so adept, little effort would be needed to script it in my humble opinion. I think I have read all the books from the Pern series, Talent Series, Brain/Brawn Series and the independent stories like the Crystal Singer, Restore etc. Actually 'The Ship Who Sang' would make an excellent start to a movie trilogy. Ah and 'The Rowan' any female actresses who read that story would have to want to try for the rowan. Not sure who would play Pete R. in 'Pegusus in flight' though.

    • Tmcaurinus says:

      Crystal Singer, The Ship Who Sang, and The Rowan are all parts of trilogies as well! 🙂

  • Bobbie Spivey says:

    Michael - I am so with you on your comments. Actually "The Ship Who Sang" was the first book I ever read of McCaffrey's - it lit a fire for searching and staying as close to whatever she wrote as I could. That and "The Silver Metal Lover" by Tanith Lee showed that SciFi was not just about spaceships and alien wars.

    • Tmcaurinus says:

      Oh man. I re-read The Silver Metal Lover recently, and it was just as much of a tear-jerker this time around. I wonder if the TV show "Almost Human" took any inspiration from it. (SO sad that's been canceled, btw!!)

  • Waganga says:

    So, the initial shout was over 3 years ago ... now what?

    • Bobbie says:

      Now we hold our breaths and hope that the right director/producers/actors are involved. It could be ruined if someone tried to may it "campy"

  • ron s says:

    I just looked at David Hayter on facebook and his official website Nada for Pern

  • Thomas L. Jenkins says:

    ABOUT TIME! I have read these books over and over and over praying as I did that someone would have spine enough to give it a go!!!!!

  • gunavexu says:

    I'm so excited, I don't know what to do other than spread the word!

    A Dragonriders Of Pern Movie May Finally Happen! - io9
    1 day ago ... Warner Bros. has optioned Dragonriders Of Pern. With The Dark Knight series
    done, Harry Potter over, and The Hobbit winding down, it's only ...

    Warner Bros' New Franchise Play: 'Dragonriders of Pern' Book ... book-series/Cached
    1 day ago ...

  • David Hayter is no longer on board. Warner Bros now has the franchise rights

  • jeff peasley says:

    I have been wanting to see a pern movie for a very long time ..even thought of cast directors etc...for example ....lessa ( Ann Hathaway )...F'lar (the guy fron John carter.....Robinton...(Actor who played Dumbledore )..Flander..(guy who play Hagrid) ...Director either Lucas or Speilburg would be great..and dragon voices oh man a great field to choose from for example ramoth..(drew Barramore)

  • Ron Stetson says:

    Variety has it listed with Warner bros.

  • Martha Gunnoe says:

    2016 and still nothing? I wish the books could be given life by Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh. There is so much life and strange but familiar stories in these books.I've read and re read them many times.

  • Debi says:

    any updates on this movie?

  • Ron Stetson says:

    in Sept 2014 it was listed in Variety as being taken up by Warner bros.
    checked today and there is no entry

  • T'mas rider of Bronze Warmoth says:

    I hope it is never animated. That would ruin it for me. I wanna see dragons in flight. I wanna hear Robinton and Menolly jam on some real fingerstyle guitar! I want to see Ramoth blood her kill! And yes the real excitement of a mating flight! A hatching! I want to see and feel all of the range of emotions Anne ran us through in print! Can you imagine a top flight(no pun intended) 3 hour movie! It could blow our minds, leave us exhausted as if we just fought a full fall at the height of a pass! And then wanting more because that's who we are! We are the fans of the Dragonriders of Pern!