Had Miguel Martins's post at The Cimmerian only been about the latest trailer to the upcoming black and white film adaptation of HPL's The Whisperer in Darkness (by the H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society), I'd probably not have given it much thought. After all, the new trailer was just released, so it makes sense that aficionados of pulp authors would all take notice and start chattering about it. That's what we do.
What's odd is that, just two days ago, I re-watched my copy of the Historical Society's earlier film, the silent movie version of The Call of Cthulhu, inspired in part by the comments to my post on August Derleth and optimism in the face of the Mythos. I'd watched the movie a couple of times when I first bought it shortly after its release and was impressed by it, but I hadn't seen it since. In doing so, I found myself not only deeply impressed by it as a film in its own right but also by how it is quite likely the best (the only?) direct cinematic adaptation of a story written by H.P. Lovecraft, which is a real feather in the cap for the Historical Society as well as yet another black mark against Hollywood.
This in turn got me to thinking not just about the paucity of faithful Lovecraft adaptations but about the even shabbier way that Robert E. Howard has been treated in film. Like Martins, I can't help but be amazed, in a dark sort of way, at the fact that, to date, no one has managed to produce a film based on a Howard story as faithful as what the H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society did with The Call of Cthulhu. All the more amazing is that, in the same year when a new Conan movie is currently being filmed in Bulgaria, the Historical Society is scheduled to release yet another adaptation of Lovecraft, which, if the trailer is any indication, will beat the tar out of Hollywood's Conan when it comes to fidelity to its source material. How the heck is this even possible?
Anyway, enjoy the trailer to The Whisperer in Darkness and imagine a world in which a Robert E. Howard Historical Society produced an adaptation of, well, any Howard story that was even half as faithful to its origins as this fan-made film looks like it'll be.