Best known as an "adventure" writer contributing to the likes of National Geographic and Outside, Peter Heller embarked on a different sort of professional journey last year, and wrote a novel. The result of that detour, post-apocalyptic novel The Dog Stars, has just been picked up for a film adaptation by Constantin.
The German production and distribution company is the home of the Resident Evil series, so they're no strangers to the end of civilisation as we know it. But there are no zombies or corrupt corporations in The Dog Stars; the premise is that 99% of the world's population has been wiped out by a flu pandemic. So far, so The Stand.
The story centres on a survivor, Hig, who ekes an existence based out of an old aircraft hangar, accompanied by his dog Jasper and his crazed ex-military neighbour Bangley. In one of his frequent short foraging trips in his vintage Cessna, Hig picks up a transmission that leads him to believe there's something more out there than holing up with a survivalist. So he embarks on a final flight to find the source of the message, knowing he only has enough fuel for a one-way trip.
Heller cites his inspirations for the book as ranging from the doom-mongering of a palaeobiologist friend, to his own trips with bush pilots in Cessnas much like the one in the story. The video below goes into more detail. There's less to learn about the film so far: it's early enough that it doesn't yet have a screenwriter or director attached. The producers for Constantin are Margo Klewans and Robert Kulzer however. As well as the Resident Evils, Kulzer is also behind the forthcoming adaptation of Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instruments.
The Dog Stars is published in hardcover in the UK by Headline. the paperback's out in May.