Michael Grodner’s Beyond Apollo Rockets Towards Production

By Brent McKnight | 9 years ago

An adaptation of Barry N. Malzberg’s 1972 science fiction novel Beyond Apollo has been in development for a number of years. Now the film is finally heading towards the big screen, with music video director Michael Grodner at the helm.

Bill Pullman (Spaceballs, Independence Day), Scott Speedman (Underworld), and Ali Larter (Heroes) headline the cast of this sci-fi thriller. Let Me In and Cloverfield director Matt Reeves signed on to executive produce, and principle photography could begin as early as this fall.

Beyond Apollo proved controversial upon its release, dividing the science fiction community. Harlan Ellison praised the book, saying that it “put me out of commission for three days after reading it.” On the other hand, Bob Shaw called it “the epitome of everything that has gone wrong with sf in the last ten years.” High praise and harsh words.

To help raise funds for the film, Grodner has maintained a website that offers news, concept art (like the above picture), cast and crew bios, and updates on the project. It’s cool, and definitely worth checking out to get an idea of where the film might go and what it could look like. Here’s the synopsis…

The first two-man mission to Venus is aborted in mid-flight and abruptly returns back to Earth. When rescue crews go to retrieve the space capsule, they make a startling discovery: The Captain is missing – there is no sign of his body whatsoever – and strangely enough, the lone surviving astronaut has no clue about what took place.

Beyond Apollo tells the riveting story of when that astronaut, Harry Evans, returns to earth and must answer to the authorities about what really happened on board the doomed flight to Venus. His mind-bending struggle to figure that out is a harrowing journey through the possibilities: Was the Captain murdered? Did he commit suicide? Or were alien beings responsible for his demise? The answer, as Evans will eventually discover, is far more terrifying than anything he could possibly imagine.

Grodner also adapted the script, and Beyond Apollos will be his first feature film. There’s even already an ominous, catchy tag line ready to slap on posters and at the end of trailers: “Some Worlds are Better Left Unexplored.”