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Filmmakers See Future: Science Fiction : Less Expensive Effects, End of Century Have Hollywood Revisiting an Old Genre

November 09, 1994|FRANK LOVECE | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Yet there appears to be something else feeding this trend as well: the coming of the millennium. "We're going toward it like a boat toward the Niagara Falls," says Densham. "We're on a time stream, and we don't know what's on the other side. I think there's a tremendous curiosity now to try and get a vision of our future."

Michael Weldon, a genre-movie specialist and editor of the magazine Psychotronic, agrees. "Science fiction never went away," he says, "but this new interest in it I think has something to do with the end of the century coming up, and people wondering what's next for us."

Will it be the bleak future of Isaac Asimov's "Foundation" books, now in development at TriStar with a script by playwright David Henry Hwang? Will it have a techno-cool industrial look, as in Kassar's planned "Total Recall II"? Or will we look back to the future, with director Renny Harlin's remake of "The Day the Earth Caught Fire"?

"We're at the beginning of a cycle," Densham says. "And whether you're talking about making the movies or just living life, we're going through a renaissance and rediscovery of what we can do. It's truly becoming what the mind can conceive, the eye can believe."

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