H.G. Wells

Aug. 08, 2012 | 11:42 a.m.

Our favorite Martians: The red planet, a pop culture history

Carl Sagan once said, "Mars has become a kind of mythic arena onto which we have projected our earthly hopes and fears." Click through the gallery to see how that projection has glowed in pop culture and the arts.
After traveling 352 million miles, NASA‘s Curiosity rover is rolling into history amid the rust-colored ridges of Mars. But pop culture and the arts have been mapping an imaginary landscape on the Red Planet for centuries. So move over, rover, and let fiction take over — flip through the photo and image gallery above to revisit a planet that invades our dreams more than any other. – Geoff Boucher RECENT AND RELATED ‘Twilight Zone’: Step through a doorway… Mars as muse: The planet’s sci-fi history The Sci-Fi 50: TV’s greatest characters ‘John Carter’: Andrew Stanton’s Martian history Moebius: The Hero Complex interview Ridley Scott: Magic comes over the horizon ‘John Carter’ set visit: Martian dreams in Utah Jonathan Frakes light years past ‘Farpoint’ ‘Star Trek’: Benedict Cumberbatch lights up RARE PHOTO: When Spock met Hendrix
March 12, 2012 | 11:06 a.m.

‘John Carter’ and the bright red history of Mars as sci-fi muse

John Carter (Frank Frazetta) (featured image)
It was 100 years ago last month that author Edgar Rice Burroughs introduced the character of John Carter — an ornery Confederate soldier, mysteriously transported to Mars, who tangles with green men, and then red ones, from an ancient civilization. Over that century, Mars has been rivaled only by our moon when it comes to off-planet fantasies, and it’s maintained a mystique with no heavenly rivals. On the page and on the screen, our cosmic neighbor has been spun every way imaginable: “The Martian Chronicles,” “My Favorite Martian” and “Total Recall.” The list is growing in another direction as video games such as Red Faction and Doom draw audiences into the Red Planet’s gravitational pull. Disney’s just-released “John Carter” film, a tale of epic fantasy directed by Andrew Stanton at considerable expense, comes after centuries of Martian fascination. “Mars has […]
Aug. 24, 2011 | 5:07 p.m.

‘The Invisible Man’: Universal sets sights on remake

"The Invisible Man" (1933) was the breakthrough role for Claude Rains, who impressed director James Whale with his stately speaking voice. Boris Karloff was the first choice for the job. (Los Angeles Times archives)
Hollywood is taking another look at “The Invisible Man.”  The see-through scientist was introduced by H.G. Wells way back in 1897 but a feature film now in the works would broaden the mythology and reach for an aesthetic closer to Guy Ritchie’s action-packed “Sherlock Holmes” franchise and the effects spectacle of “The Mummy” franchise, according to writer-director David S. Goyer. “It’s a period film but it’s period like Downey’s ‘Sherlock Holmes,’” said Goyer, whose writing credits include “The Dark Knight” and the upcoming “Man of Steel” project that will put Superman back on the big screen. “It’s period but  it’s a reinvention of the character in the sort of way that Stephen Sommers exploded ‘The Mummy’ into a much bigger kind of mythology. That’s kind of what we’ve done with ‘The Invisible Man.’” The Invisible Man — be it the actual classic character or the latest newcomer using the nickname  – […]
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