Welcome to FTW Explains, a guide to catching up on stuff going on in the world. At San Diego Comic-Con this weekend, Steven Spielberg released the first trailer for Ready Player One, a movie based on the 2011 book of the same name. The internet went nuts, but if you’ve never heard of the book, you might not know why. Let us help.
So what is Ready Player One?
Ernest Cline’s book, Ready Player One, was published in 2011. It was a smash success seemingly built for cult audiences. The novel is set in 2044, where an energy crisis has the world in panic, but the main premise is about a virtual reality game that has taken on real-world stakes. (This is an admittedly reductive description, but we’re not trying to spoil anything.)
The novel is full of all sorts of references to the past, particularly 1980s nerd culture, from Dungeons and Dragons to Freddy Krueger. That nostalgia is a driving force in why so many people fell so hard for this book. If you love Freaks and Geeks and Blade Runner, there’s probably no way you wouldn’t enjoy this one.
LET’S SEE THE TRAILER, THEN!
Spielberg doesn’t get to Comic-Con very often, but he showed up to unleash this:
Yes, that’s the DeLorean from Back to the Future, the Iron Giant, some interpretation of Ninja Turtles and Freddy Krueger. Told you there’s nostalgia involved here.
OH MAN, NOW I’M EXCITED. WHO’s IN IT?
The star is Tye Sheridan, playing Wade Watts/Parzival. Sheridan has been in X-Men: Apocalypse, Mud and The Tree of Life.
Olivia Cooke of Bates Motel plays Art3mis. The wonderful supporting actor Ben Mendelsohn, whose credits are too numerous to name, plays Nolan Sorrento.
Mark Rylance (Bridge of Spies), Simon Pegg (Shaun of the Dead and Star Trek), T.J. Miller (who is in everything now but probably is best known for Silicon Valley) and Lena Waithe (Master of None) also are in the film. Check out the whole cast on IMDB.
What’s the internet think?
Oh, you know how the internet loves some nostalgia. Factor in the virtual reality, the science-fiction and the fact that this was a very popular book already, and …
No, not everyone is in love with it. The internet can’t agree on things.
So when does this movie come out?
March 30, 2018. Might want to buy tickets in advance if you want to see it on opening night.