"I saw your piggy do a wee."

I didn't have the faintest idea that someone was making a (live action) TV version of Terry Pratchett's Hogfather. But they were, and they have, and it just screened on Sky One in the UK. Dunno when it'll make it to other parts of the world. Those of us with little patience can, of course, find it for download in the usual hives of scum and villainy.

Good points: Effects more than good enough. Most acting fine. Stuff that'll severely bother small children and delight larger ones all intact. Three hours long (different sites have different estimates, but without ads, it's three hours), so it doesn't rush through the story. And, despite that, there's little spoon-feeding, yet people who've never read a Discworld book should be only mildly puzzled.

Also, "Ian Richardson as the Voice of Death" is a good thing to have in the credits for any show. Imagine what it'd do for The Bold and the Beautiful.

Bad points: Susan Sto Helit played by attractive piece of wood. Mr Teatime played by British actor doing strange American accent for no obvious reason, beyond the director's warped desire to have Scorpio from Dirty Harry in his film. Not the quickest-moving story in the world, but better some slow scenes than everything mashed into 75 minutes, if you ask me.

Given the hideous violence that a TV movie could do to a Pratchett book (and Hogfather's one of the better ones, too), this is an excellent result. Four stars.

(See also: The animated version of Soul Music, which I've now watched enough of to be quite sure that it's not nearly as good as Hogfather. Christopher Lee as Death's voice is even better than Ian Richardson, but most of the actual book dialogue is gone, and that kills the whole thing for me just by itself. I keep thinking I'm watching Masters of the Universe In Discworld, or something.)

Posted in Movies. 3 Comments »

3 Responses to “"I saw your piggy do a wee."”

  1. fruitbaticus Says:

    As well as Soul music, they produced an animated version of Wyrd Sisters, I didn't really like the animation style much though.

  2. Jaymis Says:

    Wow. Hell must be freezing over a little, although it's a UK production, so the execs will probably have marginally more sense than the US ones who back in the day were working on Mort:

    A production company was put together and there was US and Scandinavian and European involvement, and I wrote a couple of script drafts which wet down well and everything was looking fine and then the US people said 'Hey, we've been doing market research in Power Cable, Nebraska, and other centes of culture, and the Death/skeleton bit doesn't work for us, it's a bit of a downer, we have a prarm with it, so lose the skeleton". The rest of the consortium said, did you read the script? The Americans said: sure, we LOVE it, it's GREAT, it's HIGH CONCEPT. Just lose the Death angle, guys. Whereupon, I'm happy to say, they were told to keep on with the medication and come back in a hundred years.

    Terry Pratchett

    Then there's this one on Good Omens, which still hasn't appeared (but will ROCK if it ever does)

    The difference between me and Neil in our attitude to movie projects is that he doesn't believe they're going to happen until he's sitting in his seat eating popcorn, and I don't believe they're going to happen.

    -- (Terry Pratchett, alt.fan.pratchett)

    I'm not nearly as much of a Pratchett nerd as I used to be, but this can only be a Good Thing. I thought Wyrd Sisters was basically teh suck. Ian Richardson is a reasonable choice.. Although Terry always had a certain leaning which may have biased me:

    Death isn't on line. If he was, there would be a sudden drop in the death rate. Although it'd be interesting to see if he'd post things like: DON'T YOU THINK I SOUND LIKE JAMES EARL JONES?

    -- (Terry Pratchett, alt.fan.pratchett)

  3. marius-the-mad Says:

    It would be great to see "Good Omens" (finally) turned into a movie! :) The book is one of my all-time favourites.

    And since we're somewhat dreaming, I'd *really* like to see "The Colour of Magic", "The Light Fantastic" and "Interesting Times", preferably with Johnny Depp as Rincewind. :)

    Thanks for the "Hogfather" news, Dan! :)

    P.S. "Soul Music" was... bad. :( IMO. YMMV.

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