Richard Matheson: RIP to a real legend

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Neroon, Jun 24, 2013.

  1. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2003
    Location:
    RJDiogenes of Boston
    He is legend, indeed. A quiet legend, but still a legend. It's mind-boggling to think of the extent of his work and the influence he had on many generations of readers and fellow writers.

    When I was a young man in the early 80s, I read an interview with him in Twilight Zone magazine, in which he talked about The Night Killers, his third Kolchak script, which went unproduced in favor of the TV series. I wrote him a letter, asking if he had a copy of that script that I could buy, since I was such a huge Kolchak fan (heh-- I was about twenty, so perhaps a bit naive). Of course, he didn't, but he sent me back a very nice letter telling me so and explaining why, which I thought was great of him.

    Years later, a hardcover collection of all three of his Kolchak scripts came out, which I bought-- when it came, it was autographed, which I hadn't even expected.

    RIP, Mr Matheson. The world would not be the same without you. :(
     
  2. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Location:
    Oxford, PA
    If anyone is interested, I wrote an essay on working with Matheson for io9.com.
     
  3. Neroon

    Neroon Mod of Balance Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2000
    Location:
    On my ship the Rocinante
    Definitely interested. Link?
     
  4. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Location:
    Oxford, PA
    Alas, I'm not not sure how you post links here. (I'm old and grew up before computers.) But it's titled "Remembering Matheson" and can be found at io9.com.
     
  5. Out Of My Vulcan Mind

    Out Of My Vulcan Mind Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Location:
    Wherever you go, there you are.
    Here's the link to Greg's io9 article.
     
  6. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Location:
    Oxford, PA
    Thanks!
     
  7. Sindatur

    Sindatur The Grey Owl Wizard Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2011
    Location:
    Sacramento, CA
    You can do it old fashion like, like I do: Copy (Ctrl+c) URL and paste into post (Ctrl+v). That just shows the URL. Other Folks, like Out of My Vulcan Mind, are able to be fancy and add formatting that allows you control the text that shows, but, Copy/paste the URL works just fine.
     
  8. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2003
    Location:
    RJDiogenes of Boston
    It's easy. You just highlight the word or words you want to attach the link to, as if you were going to bold or italicize, then click on the "insert link" button on the menu, then ctrl-v the URL into the pop-up box.
     
  9. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Location:
    Oxford, PA
  10. kirk55555

    kirk55555 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2011
    Location:
    Washington State, USA
    I didn't know who this guy was when I was first reading this thread, but I've apparently seen a few of the things he was involved in. I actually really enjoyed the What Dreams May Come movie with Robin Williams (even if it seems to get a lot of hate, I enjoyed it, and I didn't know it was based on a book) and (looking on wikipedia) it looks like he also wrote The Enemy Within for TOS, which was also very good.

    RIP Richard Matheson
     
  11. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Location:
    Oxford, PA
    Kirk55555, you're not alone. Everyone knows Matheson's work, but, sadly, not everyone knows his name. He was possibly the most influential science fiction/horror writer in America who wasn't a household name.

    Among other things, he was the grandfather of the entire zombie apocalypse genre. His 1954 novel, I Am Legend, inspired Romero's Night of the Living Dead, which led to The Walking Dead and every other variation on the theme. And, of course, he wrote many of the most famous episodes of The Twilight Zone.
     
  12. Sindatur

    Sindatur The Grey Owl Wizard Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2011
    Location:
    Sacramento, CA
    Google

    Oh, Cool, Thanks RJD

    I just realized I haven't commented on the thread topic. I haven't read any of his written work, but, I've seen and enjoyed Will Smith I am Legend, and Vincent Price Last Man on Earth, of course The Enemy Within. I'm sure I've enjoyed several of his Twilight Zones and of course there's Martian Chronicles. A true loss
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2013
  13. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2003
    Location:
    RJDiogenes of Boston
    ^^ You're welcome. :)
     
  14. E-DUB

    E-DUB Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2011
  15. Sindatur

    Sindatur The Grey Owl Wizard Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2011
    Location:
    Sacramento, CA
    Writer on the 1980 Mini-Series (Usually IMDB credits "Screenplay" or "novel/Book", but, The Martian Chronicles just credits him as "writer", so, I was unsure exactly what that meant)

    I also noticed just now Stir of Echoes Novel is his as well.
     
  16. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Location:
    Oxford, PA
    That's correct. Matheson wrote the screenplay for The Martian Chronicles miniseries back in the 1980's.

    As a screenwriter, he also wrote movie adaptations of MASTER OF THE WORLD (by Jules Verne), DRACULA (starring Jack Palance), THE NIGHT STALKER (based on a novel by Jeff Rice), THE DEVIL RIDES OUT (based on the occult novel by Dennis Wheatley), and, of course, various Poe movies with Vincent Price: HOUSE OF USHER, THE PIT AND THE PENDULUM, THE RAVEN, and TALES OF TERROR. He also wrote a TV-movie biography of L. Frank Baum, THE DREAMER OF OZ, among many other projects.

    Someone was just pointing out on Facebook that Matheson is the only writer whose TWILIGHT ZONE episodes have been remade as feature films twice, with THE BOX and REAL STEEL. (Three times if you count the "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet" segment in TWILIGHT ZONE: THE MOVIE.)
     
  17. Mistral

    Mistral Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2007
    Location:
    Between the candle and the flame
    Greg, sorry, perhaps I was not clear. The suits in Hollywood seem to have a thing for PKD, despite Matheson's contributions. Anytime I read an article about scifi and Hollywood, PKD comes up. I used to get a perverse joy when I worked at Borders out of suggesting Matheson's work. No one ever seemed to know who he was-but they knew his work/movies. The look of wonder on their faces when I started listing some of the movies you wrote above was priceless.
     
  18. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Location:
    Oxford, PA
    I know how that goes. I've been doing the same for years! :
     
  19. gblews

    gblews Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2004
    Location:
    So. Cal.
    I know this is probably considered one of his lesser works, but I read this book as a kid and loved it. The story of this guy shrinking and the effect on his wife and child and the practical stuff like having to wear kids clothes just fascinated me. The movie of course, didn't do justice to the book. I was blown away when I found out he was a Zone writer.

    RIP to a rare talent.
     
  20. E-DUB

    E-DUB Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2011
    In both "Shrinking Man" and "Legend", the horror isn't found in the situation , but in how one man reacts to it. In both works the protaganist finds himself isolated, and the first person narrative only hightens that effect.