Great news! It was just announced today by the master storyteller and best selling novelist Clive Barker that his 1992 dark fantasy novel, THE THIEF OF ALWAYS, is finally in the process in getting made into a live action feature. THE THIEF OF ALWAYS has been up in the air on getting the film treatment since the early 2000’s and has fallen through multiple times. In the early 1990’s Paramount planned to release it as an animated musical version of the novel with Barker as one of four executive producers, but that plan failed. In 2004 a live action adaptation of the novel was negotiated between Seraphim Films and 20 Century Fox, but that also never came to light and since then nothing else has been heard of on the project until now. Clive Barker today announces that his old friend, director Oliver Parker (DORIAN GRAY, OTHELLO) will be directing the live action feature adaptation of the novel. For those of you who might not know, Oliver Parker played the character Peloquin in Clive Barker’s cult classic film NIGHTBREED and also had small acting roles in HELLRAISER and HELLBOUND:HELLRAISER 2. Peloquin will be directing this adaptation, how cool is that!
“THE THIEF OF ALWAYS tells the haunting story of Harvey Swick, a bright 10-year-old boy who is suffering from winter boredom and makes a wish to escape. Shortly after Harvey is visited by a creature named Rictus, who lures Harvey to a place called Mr. Hood’s Holiday House. A place where you can have all your desires fulfilled. Where every season happens every single day. Where you get to celebrate Halloween and Christmas every night and eat all your favorite foods. Where every childhood whim may be satisfied, but all for a price to be paid by an evil that lurks in the shadows of Mr. Hoods Holiday House. Young Harvey Swick, bored with his life and beguiled by Mr. Hood’s wonders does not stop to consider the consequences.”
Being a longtime fan of Clive Barker, I always try to keep up with all updates on any of his upcoming projects. I have read many of his books, THE DAMNATION GAME, THE HELLBOUND HEART, WEAVEWORLD, CABAL, but the one book that has always stayed with me and I can’t seem to stop thinking about and is one of my personal favorites from Clive Barker, is THE THIEF OF ALWAYS. It’s one of the best books I’ve ever read, because it where it takes me and it’s message and mostly because it is so saturated in incredible imagination, darkness and unforgettable characters. Barker, of course is known for all of these trademarks in his past works, but this is a different breed. He has created some of his best characters ever in this book! I love the creature Rictus, but he also really scares the shit out of me. For instance, how he arrives into Harvey’s life in the beginning of the book is spine-chilling and sort of funny. Just the description of his presence and smile alone gives me the creeps. You’ll see what I mean when you read the book. So much fun!
The book is also filled with amazing illustrations of many characters and scenes in the story by Clive Barker . It’s a beautiful and terrifying story full of magic, malicious demons, nightmarish and mesmerizing characters in a world of innocence and evil. It is written as a children’s book and believe me, this is the only book Barker has ever written to be ever so closely considered as a children’s book, but is obviously intended for adults. I have read the book several times, but ever since the first time I delved into THE THIEF OF ALWAYS, I’ve always dreamed and fantasized of experiencing it as a film in cinematic form and to see all of these intricate, complicated creatures come alive before me and now it seems its finally happening. This is big news for fans of his book that have been teased for the past 10 years on rumors and talk about this project getting underway, but never reaching any sort of certainty of it becoming manifested for the big screen.
Reading this news today has put the biggest smile on my face. Im so excited. The kind of doing flying ninja-kicks and back-flips-in-the-air excitement! Although, I would have loved Barker himself to be the one directing his own dark fable, because I think he is great as a director and hasn’t made a film in so long, but I couldn’t be more happy that Oliver Parker is taking it on and THE THIEF OF ALWAYS is finally get the attention and love for the adaptation it deserves.
Stay tuned for more upcoming news in the future. You can always follow Clive Barker on Facebook.