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Steven Spielberg's Ready Player One hits theaters in December 2017

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Steven Spielberg's Ready Player One, the film adaptation of Ernest Cline's science fiction novel of the same name, is set to premiere Dec. 15, 2017, distributor Warner Bros. Pictures announced today.

"Any film from Steven Spielberg is an event film, so it felt right to date this thrilling new project from one of our greatest filmmakers for the holiday season," said Dan Fellman, president of domestic distribution for Warner Bros. Pictures, in a press release today.

In March, Spielberg signed on to direct Ready Player One, which will be his first film for Warner Bros. since A.I. in 2001. Spielberg is also serving as a producer. The film is based on a screenplay by Zak Penn; he reworked the original film adaption, which Cline himself wrote with Eric Eason. Penn wrote and directed "Atari: Game Over," the documentary produced by Xbox Entertainment Studios about the excavation of a New Mexico landfill last year for E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial cartridges.

Cline's Ready Player One, which debuted in 2011, tells the story of Wade Watts, a skilled gamer living in 2044 who is obsessed with the 1980s. Watts goes on a virtual treasure hunt seeking fame and fortune, a quest in which the clues can only be deciphered by someone familiar with arcade games and other elements of '80s pop culture.

Production has not yet begun on the Ready Player One movie. The companies producing the film — Warner Bros. Pictures, Village Roadshow Pictures and DreamWorks Pictures — have yet to announce the cast or any other details about the project.