‘Ender’s Game’ Director Talks Potential Sequel Based on Upcoming ‘Fleet School’ Book

Published 10 months ago by , Updated March 3rd, 2014 at 8:57 pm,

enders game movie sequel Enders Game Director Talks Potential Sequel Based on Upcoming Fleet School Book

It may’ve taken 28 years, but the Ender’s Game movie adaptation finally opened in U.S. theaters this past weekend. However, between the lukewarm critical response – our own Kofi Outlaw’s review wryly notes that the adaptation defies expectations (good and bad) by falling “squarely in the middle of the pool” – and a respectable box office opening around $28 million (but against a $110 million budget), there’s no guarantee yet of a sequel; much less, that the film will birth a new franchise that goes beyond movie #2.

Fans of author Orson Scott Card’s source material will be aware that the Ender’s Game sequel novel, Speaker for the Dead, is a far cry from its predecessor. Indeed, the sequel installment in Card’s Ender Saga takes it cues from the Alien franchise and jumps ahead far in time, some 3,000 years after the events that transpire in Ender’s Game. Question is, if the Ender’s Game movie franchise lives to see another day, will it follow down that same path? There’s a reasonable chance that the answer is “no,” in part because Card is currently writing a novel that could be the basis for a more traditional Hollywood sequel.




Enders Game Reviews starring Asa Butterfield Harrison Ford Viola Davis Ben Kingsley and Hailee Steinfeld 2013 570x294 Enders Game Director Talks Potential Sequel Based on Upcoming Fleet School Book

Speaker for the Dead catches up with an older Andrew Wiggin – who has long abandoned the name Ender because of its association with his genocide against the Formics – after he’s spent thousands of years searching for a plant where the Formic Hive Queen may rebirth her species. Thanks to the benefits of relativistic space travel, Mr. Wiggin is only around 35 years old when he sets out to another planet colonized by humans – called Lusitania – which is also home to a different sentient extraterrestrial species, known as the Pequeninos (a.k.a. “piggies”).

Ender’s Game writer/director Gavin Hood told Hero Complex that a movie sequel – in the event that it does get a greenlight – might not go that route:

“[Would I make a sequel is] a great question, but I think it’s such a difficult one to answer, because the sequel ‘Speaker for the Dead’ takes place 30 years after, so we’re in an interesting place. I think we have to hope that audiences respond to the film… And Orson is apparently writing something that’s more of a direct follow called ["Fleet School"]. Obviously, from the studio’s point of view, they’d almost certainly want to move the characters from this film into the next journey. So it may be that ‘Speaker for the Dead’ is not the sequel now…”

Indeed, Speaker for the Dead is such a far cry from the storyline featured in the first Ender book, one could argue that it essentially forms a separate trilogy with the third and fourth installments, Xenocide and Children of the Mind. With that in mind, it’s easier to understand why Hood is doubtful about Speaker‘s prospects of getting a film adaptation, even though it would be saddled with fewer of the artistic compromises that come with creating an easy-to-follow continuity (for a related discussion, see our pros/cons list for original cast members returning in Star Wars: Episode VII).

Moreover, in the case of the Ender series, the producers might be all the more hesitant about straying too far from the young adult narrative template, given its lucrative nature (see: Twilight, The Hunger Games). That wouldn’t be a concern if the Ender’s Game movie sequel were to be based on Card’s upcoming “Fleet School” book, which the controversial author – and Southern Virginia University professor – discussed in a video recently posted to the SVU official Youtube account.

Here is how Card summarized the beginning of the “Fleet School” saga:

“[The new book is] for a YA audience, but it’s about what happens to Battle School after the International Fleet loses its purpose of war. It becomes what is called Fleet School and it prepares kids to be commanders [and] explorers in the colonies that are forming. [We] get to see as the school administrators repurpose the school. The Battle Room is still there, but it’s a whole different kind of education…”

Thing is, though, Card has spent a lot of time playing in this sandbox already, having published the Ender’s Game book quartet, additional novels set in the universe and the spinoff book series, The Shadow Saga (which revolves around Ender’s Battle School peer, Bean) – but, arguably, with depleted quality, despite healthy book sales. Between creative burnout and the indication that Card is writing these new books with a potential film adaptation in mind (because that approach worked great for Mark Millar on Kick-Ass 2), there’s reason to be cautious about these novels serving as inspiration for the movies iteration hereon out.

Then again, said Ender’s Game movie sequel is far from a sure thing right now, so we’ll have to wait and see how all this pans out. In the meantime, feel free to share with us your own thoughts about the first movie (and whether or not you’re even interested in seeing this franchise live on).


Ender’s Game is now playing in theaters.

Source: LA Times

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  1. I bought the Ender’s game book back in 1985 and it was one of the best books that I ever read and just got to watch the movie and it was as great as the novel. I can’t wait for the second movie if they make it.

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  3. Really? Are we just going to ignore the direct sequel to Ender’s Game that he wrote a few years ago? You keep talking about how “Speaker for the Dead” is a “far cry” from Ender’s Game, but… There’s a direct sequel.

  4. I read the entie ender series and bean series when I was in high school due o my english teacher because ihated reading. But those books changed that for me and for you to no make movies in accordance to how the series goes would disappoint me greatly. Eventhough speaker of the mind happens so far down the line you can aleas get an older actor as long as the suite the part. And as for enders shadow I have mix feeling about it. Yes it should have been shot at the aame time as ender’s game and I can agree it might be to late to try and shoot the film without new actors which would probably ruin the film anyways but I’m just not so sure it could make it though being a tv series eventhough i’d definelt watch it

  5. So you love Ender’s Game do you?

    I think Mr Card has a right to his own opinions… And… How is any of this even remotely related to Ender’s Game?

    It’s just as primitive to not be able to accept a mans views, as it is to have that view in the first place.
    You are no better than him, in my eyes.
    You people are not open minded.
    I’m not anti gay, or pro gay.
    I’m sort of neutral. I think everyone is allowed to love, but if I saw a gay couple kissing on an escalator, I wouldn’t start clapping, I’d just probably stare at the roof, or maybe winkle my nose like I do with straight couples.
    So don’t throw stones at me. Please.

    … Anyone ever hear the saying: “Every time you spend money, you are casting a vote for the kind of world you want”?


    Well, all you lot from site Nerdom or whatever it was, that put that thing up about … “BOYCOTT ALL THE ENDERDISE”…
    Do you realise what you people have done?
    You might think you don’t agree with Mr Card’s thoughts, but you do.
    If you didn’t, you wouldn’t be able to read his works.
    Not because he forces his opinion on you, but what he writes about… Is what he sees… Yes?
    His… View…
    I’m sorry, but if you don’t think reading a book by someone, counts as agreeing with their opinion, then you try writing a story and see how easy it is not to put your bias’s and life experiences in there.
    Or, if Suzanne Collins wrote it, don’t you think she would have written it differently? Suzzane definitely puts her views into her work!
    Tell me, if you all hate “Orson Scott Card” so much, why don’t you just set him on fire?!!!!
    The movie flopped thanks to you, his opinion is unchanged, and…

    Ender’s Game is something else.
    It says it all.
    And now it’s going.
    The man is alive, he is on his Earth, with his own opinion, completely unchanged.
    Your achievement…
    You morons went to see Thor and floppified Ender’s Game.

    You have just said that you don’t love the underdog, the victim who fights back, and his friends. The person who refuses to be defied by anyone, and put in a box.
    The person who accepts genoside, and starts over.
    Ender Wiggin. You have killed Ender Wiggin.
    I don’t know how you did it.
    But you did.
    Congratulations, you buggers.

    Yours truly,

    A 14 year old female git, and you just got Demosthenes/Locke-d.

    For all you people know, I could be a 50-year-old coot, or a cat.

    • I couldnt have written that any better than you.

      Thank you!

    • wow, that was exactly what I was thinking but whats even worse is that the awesome actors in the movie didn’t get what they deserved (the good ratings, etc). The movie was clearly epic no matter how much money they made.

      • I agree, the actors and the movie on it’s own didn’t receive the feedback they deserved. This was a very well made movie. To my opinion a successful one. Although, I think they didn’t promote the movie that well. I’m a person that has a habit of going to the movies and I don’t remember seeing trailers or something about this movie. So, again in my opinion, it didn’t make much money because people didn’t know it was out there.

        • I totally agree, if I had seen a trailer then I would have paid to see it.

    • While I recognize you’re not directing your thoughts at those of us that value Card and his writings, his musings on Hatrack or Ornery American, or additional concepts like the failed Advent game/almost-series; you are mistaken about Ender’s demise. If you read the comments around the web in general, this very site, and even herein, you should be heartened by the number of fervent supporters for Ender, Bean, and all things OSC.
      The proto-story that many of us love truly is just a door opening upon the rest of the verse. We should be finding ways to impress upon each other the need for unity, even with those of differing opinion. It is not necessary that everyone recognize the value in the stories, only that we actually take the lessons therein to heart. For my part, I would say that OSC cares more that his art teaches us to come together rather than drive us apart, regardless of any unintended divisiveness that slipped in from his psyche during composition. As supporters, we too should shy away from unnecessary conflict.
      And, to be fair, you can’t be both Demosthenes and Locke, as you didn’t present and support two opposing sides in separate antagonistic flare. =D

      Blessings, Maya et alia.

  6. i loved this movie!! MAKES ME WANT TO READ THE BOOK PLZZZ MAKE A SECOND MOVIE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

  7. I just watched the movie and I’ve gone through Enderverse with the audiobooks and a few paperbacks, but I knew this movie would be tricky from the amount of internal dialogue in the book. The movie looks fine, but I really had a way different representation in my mind from the book what battle school and life was like. Where there was once a heavily psychological scene there is now playful joking. But hey that’s fine, Ender’s Game branches many age groups. But the minute they talk about doing Speaker for the Dead as a movie they have got to move away from a family friendly box office hit. Speaker for the Dead is not a story I can see being a strong seller, the scenes Card illustrates are spectacular and perhaps are best left at that. That is a real tough movie to make, I would love to see a good one, but never if they have to sacrifice as much of the character building as they did in Enders Game.

  8. i was skeptical about hearing what the movie was about, i thought what most people would think “the idea is good but im sure i will be disapointed like most other sci-fi movies” i watched and well to put it short i was blown away from what i expected. i expected a cheesy movie and what i ended up watching was a master piece. if someone important does read this, 10/10 and i would be grateful if u could get a second one started ASAP!

  9. I loved the movie. Even though I’m 13 and they changed it to look more military stiled I still loved it. It influenced me to read the entire QUINTET. Not only the first 4, but the direct sequel( ender in exile) and the short prequel war of gifts. I have been checking since the movie first came out for any sign of a tv series, mostly becuase they did awful with how much they made. I bought the movie off of iTunes and watched it twice in theaters. Even though I don’t think a lot would watch it they could still make it really cheaply? Right? I’ll keep dreaming

  10. After watching Ender’s game I felt tha I was recharged, full of hope. I love the message and if other people continues to compare theoriginal book to the movie well one thing is for sure that Imagination is limitless while a movie production is not.
    I hope for a sequel and I really do love to watch the sequels please make them.

  11. Just loved this movie, and I hope a sequal does come out hopefully ! :)

  12. I will say this. I loved the books but I was a greater fan of beans story.

    Honestly I see enders shadow doing much better than this film.

    • I 100% agree, Shadow series would touch so many people. Change perception of orphans on the streets. I have read everything Card has written. Not fanatically, but at least once… :)
      What sent my threw loops was after reading E.G, I read Children of the Mind. The jump between those two. Although when I went and read them in order, It widened this picture I had of the “Enderverse” from The conquest in the first book, (to me) This crazy religious colony world. I could reread Card’s books for life!. Please make another movie, go with the battle/training school movie but leave it open for shadow to come out. PLEASE

    • I agree. I thought the story in Speaker, Xenocide, and Children was great, but I can’t honestly say that I think it would make awesome movies. (They could, I don’t know.) I loved the Shadow Quartet, it was just amazing. The whole war with Achilles and the world thrown in chaos thing was something that was really interesting to read. I could easily see them turning The Shadow Quartet into movies and lot easier than Ender’s Quartet. Great action, plus a great story in them.

  13. Hello umm I am pretty sure that speaker of the dead will be very hard to do but you have to think about ratings and how much the fans loved your movie card it was an fanastistic piece of art and I am sure you will make the right call by going g the direct series and do speaker the dead followed everything else and make your country proud

    I believe in you you are my hero

  14. I can’t say that I have read the books, I didn’t realize this was based off a book until the ending credits of the movie. Regardless, that movie was beyond brilliant (as I am sure the book and whole series is). There was not a minute that I got bored and I am just so enamored with the growth of Ender’s character as well as his comrades. There was little or no defeat in Ender’s training, he was always moving forward but I still never knew what he was going to do, and wasn’t like “of course he’s going to win.” I still had doubts in my mind of which way it would go, and I didn’t get bored or annoyed with the fact that he won without much of a struggle (and I mean as in movie terms, there seemed to be little to no resistance to the team annihilating the Formics). There are too many things for me to praise in the movie, I really am just blown away by the entire story and world created, I really hope they do another adaptation. But in the meantime, I will hit the books.

  15. The movie to me was just ok. Nothing overly spectacular or intriguing such as Avatar. Its hard for me to believe the budget for it was 110 Mil. I dint read the books but judging by what i read about Speaker of the Dead, I can see where it might be difficult to make that a sequel. The film was lukewarm overall. I can see the hesitance on a part 2.

  16. Please, please, pleaseeeeee… make a sequel for this movie.. I love it so much. It teach me a lot of how to be a great magnanimous witty leader.. and please 1 thing for sure is.. make Asa Butterfield and other casts the stars of this sequel too.. don’t change actors!!! Thankyou for your kind attention :*:*:*

  17. I really like the movie and I really hop that there will be another one. Because I felt like I was on a cliff wondering if there was going to be another. But turns out you guys aren’t quite finished getting your thoughts together onto the makings. And yes I will be waiting for another because I was quite fond of the movie.

  18. I will start out by saying I am a 49yo man, and I do like some sci fi movies, where they dont get too cheesy. With that said, I found this page searching for information on a sequel to this great movie. I had never read the books, or even heard of them. I had really no idea of what the movie was about, but I was bored one night and decided to watch it, and have seen it numerous times now. The cast was great, and the movie was never cheesy. I love Star Wars and saw some of the emotion Hayden Christenson had in his acting in Asa Butterfield’s portrayal of Ender Wiggin. You cant stop now… why would you even think to stop here??

  19. I think this movie was phenomenal. & I hope there’s going to be a second third and fourth

  20. Just watched this movie with my wife and kids…we were all surprised how good it was!
    The previews made it look a little cheesy and thats what kept us from watching it in the 1st place…
    I guess others thought the same thing…hopefully it will b a lesson learned and if they do another movie
    They will market it a little better! Look forward to going back and reading the book series!!!

  21. I have seen a lot of movies, good or bad, it just all depends on how to advertise them properly. Some movies even though its bad but has a good trailer, so lots of people are encourage to watch it, good movies sometimes don’t reach a lot of country or places. But i think this movie deserves to have a sequel in big screen. hope to watch it soon…

    • like any transformers movie. terrible, zero story. but action packed trailer and makes ridiculous money.

  22. I just got round to watching this movie, and BOY DID I LOVE IT! I usually dislike space like/themed movies but i thought this was amazing! I really do hop they make another movie. I really loved the main actor Ender also (played by Asa Butterfield)

  23. For me the movie was awesome, I was a fan of the books, but been that an older franchise it wasn’t written like today commercial series, say Harry Potter.
    If I can remember it, more or less, in the first movie Ender’s about 13 year old, in the second book 30 something and then in third he’s in his eighties and even have grandchildren, then is 20 again in the four.
    make it really hard if you want to use the same actors.

  24. I loved the movie! I was glued to the film the second I started watching it. I have watched it several time and can’t get enough of it! I was love to see a sequel come out for this and I will have to check out the books as well but I would be very excited to hear if a sequel for this is coming out! I would love to see it!

  25. If you want something with less of a time gap go with beans storyline. Simple fix and it follows the original books.

    • if they split the movie between the shadow storyline and the fleet school and enders journey towards the speaker for the dead storyline they could probably do it. I know it’s a lot to jam in, but compressing the story lines and doing a more reasonable time jump between speaker of the dead and the rest of the story.

  26. I first want to say I pretty much never read. Moments or post them but because the article made it seem as if people with actual influence might read my comment.
    I watch a lot of movies and tv and never watch something twice there is just too much new stuff that is good to watch something again.

    Enders game is no different however my roommate is opposite he watches things many times over. That said I have seen pieces of EG several times. Every time I am re blown away by the awesomeness of this movie.
    I truly put this movie in my Epic category in which there are few.
    I have never read the books but because of the Enderverse that I watched come to life in the movie makes me want to run out and read the books.
    Just like all the marvel and dc movies and walking dead make me want to read the comics.

    Whether I do or not is yet to be determined I read for learning not for pleasure. I leave the pleasure for the big screen or my 60″ plasma.

    I am 40 years old Andy roommate is 37.

    I could go on and on about how much I loved the movie but I think that would not be as beneficial as what I am going to say next.

    I want there to be a sequel very bad and to create such
    an amazing new world and leave it at just one movie would be such a shame and such a waste.
    Whoever did the marketing for this movie should be fired and never hired again.
    They deserve to castigated and reamed for there poor marketing efforts.
    After watching the movie with my roommate who was watching it for the second time. He was convinced they ended the movie in such a way there could be no sequel. I on the other hand laid out a completely plausible story and scenario as to how there could be a sequel. He then was like oh your right there could be a sequel.
    Now I vaguely remember hearing it was based on a book but not sure if it was someone who told me or from the trailer.

    Having some experience in marketing this is how I would have marketed it.


    Of course get the awesome voice over guy to say all of this.

    You will not believe who is chosen to save the World

    You will be blown away by the gravity of the situation

    Welcome to a world where the leaders are anyone but who you expect.

    In this game they are playing for keeps

    This is Enders Game

    You will fall in love with this new world

    You will be craving the sequel

    Welcome to a new universe welcome to Enderverse

    Based on the best selling books by Orson Scott Card

    I would not show anything that gives away who ended is

    I would not show that the kids are warriors.

    I would show some of the awesome special effects

    I would show some of the adults conversing and the children playing in the anti gravity area.

    Any way I think had it been marketed much better and marketed to be the first of many movies in a series it woild have do a much better.

    Lions gate has a gem on their hands they just need to use it correctly and market it correctly.

    • I typed this all out on my iPhone which the website was not very friendly too. I tried my best to proof all of what I wrote but there was an area where things got blocked so I could not see.

      Anyway I am writing this to apologize for any typeos and at least correct the first one.

      ****I hardly leave comments or read comments.


  27. I read the Ender series many years ago when they first came out and really liked the books. That being said, I have now seen Ender’s Game 5 times. Once when the DVD first came on to the internet, and 4 times recently since HBO has been showing the movie this month.

    I rarely watch things more than once, but for some reason I find the Ender’s Game movie very re-watchable and it’s simply a great, well paced and well acted movie. I came to this place because I was googling around to see if there was going to be a sequel made. The fact that I even got *that* interested in something should say a lot.

    The less than expected performance of this movie at the box office can be best placed on terrible marketing. I never saw anything about this movie even being made or it coming to theaters, and to release it against ANY Marvel movie is horrible decision making. Marvel is already an established movie franchise, you DON’T try to release something new like Ender’s Game the same weekend Thor is coming out, that’s just stupid. How and why was that decision made, whoever made it should be fired.

    This is a really good movie, and it deserved better than it got from Marketing. Like I said, I rarely re-watch anything, but I have seen this movie 5 times so far. They should make a sequel, although I do agree with others that following the books in the series without taking some serious creative license is probably impossible.

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