HBO's 'Fahrenheit 451' Will Stay True to Ray Bradbury's Central Themes


Ray Bradbury's novel "Fahrenheit 451" is more relevant now than ever before, director of HBO's adaptation Ramin Bahrani said Thursday.

Fahrenheit 451 takes place in a dystopian reality set in a future America where books have been outlawed, and it's the job of "firemen" to burn any books they discover.

Seeking to modernize the themes in Bradbury's 1953 novel - which revolve around the population's willing abandonment of knowledge - Bahrani said that where "Bradbury was concerned about mass entertainment and short sound bites", he is "with tweets and wiki entries".

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The trailer itself doesn't actually feature any footage from the movie itself but does give us a great idea of what we can expect, with the trailer featuring the dark imagery of books and knowledge set aflame.

The film was directed by Ramin Bahrani of 99 Homes notoriety.

The main cast of the movie includes Michael B Jordan as Montag, a young fireman who forsakes his world, battles his mentor and struggles to regain his humanity. It's after this that he begins to question everything he knows, bringing him into conflict with his Supervisor, Beatty, played by the ever menacing Michael Shannon. Sofia Boutella stars as Clarisse, an informant caught between the competing interests of Montag and Beatty. I tried to stay true to the themes, even if I changed certain characters and plot lines.

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"Knowledge is unsafe. Every book is like a loaded gun", a quick clip of the show professes.

Fahrenheit 451 will air in the spring on HBO, though it does not yet have a set release date. Bahrani conceptualized this new take on the futuristic society by imagining that "it wouldn't be very hard to start to manipulate and control what is on the Internet if things got more centralized". I don't want us to forget what Bradbury said - that we asked for this. Between the technological advancements in the last 20 years and politics, Bradbury's biggest concern about the erosion of culture is now.

"We're all guilty of just reading the headlines", the director concluded. Bradbury says we've asked for this.

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"I have always loved Ray Bradbury's prophetic novel Fahrenheit 451", said Bahrani.