Here’s just a small list of some of the many projects Michael Chabon is currently working on. If you know of one that I do not, e-mail me.
Chabon is currently at work on an adults-oriented fiction book taking place in contemporary Berkeley and Oakland called Telegraph Avenue. Chabon described the book to the Miami Hurricane in 2009 as “sort of a family story” and told the Wall Street Journal in December 2010 that he is “going to try to turn it in 2011.”
The previously untitled novel was first described while Chabon was promoting Yiddish Policemen’s Union in 2007. At the time, Chabon said he wanted to write another adults-oriented novel. The book is said to be based in and around the contemporary Bay Area.
“I would like to get a new novel going,” Chabon said during a chat hosted by The Washington Post. “I would like it to be set in the present day and feel right now the urge to do something more mainstream than my recent work has been.”
During a Q&A session in January 2009, Chabon said he was writing a “naturalistic” novel about two families in Berkeley, author Frances Dinkelspiel wrote on her blog. Dinelspiel speculates that Chabon’s previous writings on Berkeley may suggest what themes may appear in the book, including suburban homogenization.
Chabon previously has said the novel would be set in and around the contemporary Bay Area. “I would like to get a new novel going,” Chabon said during a chat hosted by The Washington Post in 2007. “I would like it to be set in the present day and feel right now the urge to do something more mainstream than my recent work has been.”
“Telegraph Avenue” was also the name of a pilot script Chabon worked on for TNT some years ago that he said in a Random House interview was “the story of two families, white and black, in Oakland and Berkeley, CA.”
UNTITLED YOUNG ADULTS NOVEL
Details are scarce on this project, a young-adults novel. “This young-adult novel I’m working on now has some fantastic content,” Chabon told Entertainment Weekly in May 2007. And that’s almost all he’s said so far on it. It’s possible, though highly speculative, that Chabon is writing one of two previously discusses sequels to Summerland.
Chabon said in June 2007 that he’d put the novel on hold.
“Just wasn’t working for me; I’ll get back to it eventually,” he said.
JOHN CARTER OF MARS (MOVIE)
Chabon is revising the script for Disney’s John Carter of Mars, which is expected to hit theaters in 2012.
“I’ve been hired to do some revisions to an already strong script by Andrew Stanton and Mark Andrews,” Chabon said. “I wrote my original screenplay The Martian Agent back in 1995 because I wished I could do [Edgar Rice] Burroughs’s Barsoom. So this is pretty much a dream come true for me.”
Disney got the option rights to Burrough’s 11-volume series in 2007 after the rights lapsed at Paramount Pictures. Andrew Stanton, the writer and director of Finding Nemo and WALL-E, is set to direct. It’s expected to hit theaters in 2012.
THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF KAVALIER & CLAY (THE MOVIE)
Chabon was hired to adapt his own novel for the big screen. The movie remains stalled. To get the whole scoop on the movie, head to the movie section.
THE YIDDISH POLICEMEN’S UNION (THE MOVIE)
Joel and Ethan Coen, of Fargo and No Country for Old Men fame, agreed in 2008 to write a screen adaptation for Chabon’s 2007 novel The Yiddish Policemen’s Union. “I am, of course, over the moon about this,” Chabon told this site at the time. “They are among my favorite living moviemakers. Three or four of their films are on my all-time favorite list. They are geniuses. What’s more, I think they are perfectly suited to this material in every way, from its genre(s) to its tone to its content. I can’t wait to see what they eventually do with it.”
Scott Rudin is set to produce the film for Columbia Pictures, Variety reported in February 2008. But the project is not the first on the Coen Brothers’ plate: Variety reported in March 2009 that the duo would instead adapt Charles Portis’ True Grit first.
SNOW AND THE SEVEN
Chabon was the first writer to sign on to Snow and the Seven for Disney. Directed by Hong Kong martial arts master Yuen Wo Ping (The Matrix, Iron Money), the movie will set the classic “Snow White” story in 1880s British colonial China and feature martial arts and fantasy elements. The film will be darker than the Disney Cartoon, borrowing from the Grimm Tales instead. The seven dwarves have been replaced by seven Shaolin monks.
By August 2006, Chabon had been replaced as the writer. A brief recounting by Chabon of the end of his job on the film went like this: “They love you, but they want to go in another direction.” “What kind of dir–” “More of a fun direction.” “Oh.”
For more info, read the Hollywood Reporter article.
Chabon was for a time said to be planning to write two Summerland sequels. Additionally, the original novel has been optioned by Miramax, though no word yet on how Chabon would be involved in the production of a movie. No news, though, has emerged on either front since Chabon’s original novel hit stores in 2002.