Steven Spielberg’s adaptation of the popular Ernest Cline novel Ready Player One is coming to the big screen in the spring, and the legendary director says going back to the pop culture icons of the 1980s provided for a unique kind of escapism.
Spielberg says the movie is “a cautionary tale but also an exhilarating adventure.” He goes on to say the ’80s “had a refreshing lack of cynicism, and in our story, that’s what people are trying to return to. In their real lives, they’re living in a debris field of the first half of the 21st century.”
Ready Player One tells the story of Wade Watts, a young man living in the bleak world of 2045, where people around the globe have entered a virtual Easter egg hunt that could leave the winner rich beyond their wildest dreams.
The hunt is orchestrated by dead billionaire James Halliday, the 1980s-obsessed creator of the virtual OASIS, who designed the treasure hunt to give away his fortune.
People enter the OASIS through avatars they can design, and this aspect of the story has some relevance to the way people interact today. When asked about how characters interact through the OASIS, Spielberg says: “You get to know their quirks, (but) you don’t know who the person really is until you meet them in the real world. So there’s always that doubt: Are they telling the truth about themselves?”
The movie features X-Men: Dark Phoenix star Tye Sheridan as Wade and Mark Rylance as Halliday.
Other cast members include Olivia Cooke, T.J. Miller, Simon Pegg and Ben Mendelsohn.
Ready Player One hits theatres March 30 2018.