Daniel H. Wilson must be a happy man. Last week, the author learned that none other than Steven Spielberg would direct Robopocalypse, an adaptation of Wilson’s novel of the same name. Now, Wilson’s first book, the satirical survival guide How to Survive a Robot Uprising is being turned into a movie by Jack Black and director Steve Pink (Hot Tub Time Machine).
How to Survive a Robot Uprising has been touted as a possible movie before and was even optioned by Mike Myers at one point, but it seemed to have fallen by the wayside. Luckily for Wilson – and for fans of robotic mayhem – the project was picked back up by Black and Pink, with the latter man already working on the script.
According to io9, who broke the story, the project could be the “Dr. Strangelove of robot uprising movies,” which sounds pretty awesome. The question remains, however, whether Black will star in the movie himself or simply act as producer. The same goes for Pink, who also has not officially been confirmed as director. In any case, those two pairing up should make for good comedy.
I recall reading How to Survive a Robot Uprising when it first came out and thinking it was good, though not great. The book is very tongue-in-cheek and is not meant to offer any real survival advice. It’s an interesting contrast to the Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks, which finds its humor in its dryness. When you read the Zombie Survival Guide, the tips are actually well-founded and meticulously thorough (all the more amusing since zombies aren’t real…or are they?)
Steve Pink is definitely a capable comedy writer, and it will be interesting to see how he takes a book with no real plot and carves a narrative from it. Of course, this is nothing new in Hollywood. Consider the glut of new movies inspired by board games. At least with How to Survive a Robot Uprising, there’s a couple hundred pages of inspiration to chew on, not just a board and a pair of dice.