Iain M. Banks’ “The Culture” Is Heading to the Silver Screen

by Irma Arkus

You know how we bemoan the wretchedness of Hollywood treatments of Isaac Asimov and Phillip K. Dick works for the silver screen? Well, now the fans of Iain M. Banks can join the horrified and disappointed masses, as “The Culture” is apparently being prepped for the big screen.

Iain M. Banks has a huge following in Europe, less so in US, yet his books are considered instant sci-fi classics, imbued with both provocative prose and interesting ideas.

“The Culture” saga begins with the “Consider Phlebas,” one of Banks’ first novels published in 1987.

The novel, considered a beginning of a beloved space opera, features Bora Horza Gobuchul who is in opposition of the very culture he represents. A changling, Horza plays with his personal appearance and gender, and ultimately has to engage in a war between Culture, a technology-dependent, hedonistic society criticised for being endlessly boring and atheistic; and Indirans, made of religious zealots set on expansion of their empire.

The Culture could probably feed some 10+ films, and it is primarily shaped by socio-political ideologies of Iain M. Banks himself, prone to supporting socialist ideals and his evident lack of theology. The Culture, initally despondent to war, ultimately stands up to Indiran invasive efforts, but from a moral standpoint.

Now, Banks’ “A Gift From The Culture” short story is treated to an adaptation by Dominic Murphy, and Shane Smith.[ScreenDaily]