Dreamworks is finalizing a deal now that would acquire the rights to the sci-fi novel, I Am Number Four, for Michael Bay to produce and possibly direct. Steven Spielberg, as he’s done with the Transformers franchise, will play an active behind-the-scenes role in the production of the movie, which is about nine earthbound teenage aliens whose planet is destroyed by a hostile species. The teenagers manage to fit in at an American high school, but the title character — Number Four — discovers that he’s being hunted down by the alien folks that blew up his planet.
The real intrigue in this item, however, comes in knowing who one of the two authors of I Am Number Four is: Embattled author, James Frey. As you may recall, Frey published a memoir, A Million Little Pieces, with quite a few untruths in it and was subsequently sandbagged on national TV by Oprah Winfrey.
I actually have nothing against Frey. I loved A Million Little Pieces and its follow-up, My Friend Leonard. In fact, I thought his third book — A Bright, Shiny Morning — was his best work (although, it got slammed by several publications). I really dig the man’s writing style, whether he’s telling the truth or not. Plus, the guy’s brilliantly self-deprecating — in 2007, he worked as a fact-checker for Gawker one day, which is as close as an author can get to a celebrity involved in a scandal appearing on “SNL” to poke fun at him or herself. He earned my eternal forgiveness for that.
The point is: I have no idea whether Frey can write sci-fi, but I know he can write, but it doesn’t really matter how good the novel is, anyway because Michael Bay is sure to fuck it up. The end.