Warner Bros.’s pending Dune sequel stands to be one of the more exciting highlights for moviegoers this year. It’s certainly helped put Jon Spaihts on radar after penning the first one, adding to his resumè notably topped off with Marvel’s Doctor Strange (2016) before now.
gears of war
Following its announcement last October, Universal’s forthcoming Gears Of War adaptation has now found a writer in Shane Salerno (Armageddon, Savages, the Avatar saga). The film is inspired by the popular Epic Games publication which took off in 2006 and followed with four titles thereafter.
The adaptation, accorrding to Microsoft’s The Coalition head, Rod Fergusson late last year, will reportedly focus its narrative on a new story set within the universe, about a squad of commandos in a post-apocalyptic war with alien Locusts on the fictional planet of Sera. Universal’s Dylan Clark is producing the film. (H/T: Deadline)
I have a pretty short list of video games that I would love to see transition into live-action feature film territory. It’s a short list, but a list no less and one that I would love to live long enough to see through, and I will expand on those thoughts at the right time.
One other game property not in my list is the 2006 Microsoft publication, Gears Of War, from Epic Games, the first of a four-game series focused on a team of soldiers taking on the Locust Hord and other enemies. I’ve never played the games so I can’t relate, save for the fact that heavily armed protagonists who can kick ass and fight subterranean being will undoubtedly serve the masses well enough to garner support for a feature film.
Thus, it has now become the goal of producers Scott Stuber (Ted, The Kingdom) and Dylan Clark (Rise of the Planet of the Apes) to oblige the fanbase accordingly with word from Variety of the film’s development at Universal. The film was reportedly mentioned during a livestream for the upcoming fourth installment of the game series which releases next week on Xbox One and Microsoft Windows.
Says Rod Fergusson, studio head of game developer, The Coalition:
“As a way to support the franchise the next logical step was to make the movie,” Fergusson told Variety. “We’d done comics and novels in the past but the opportunity to work with Universal to bring the movie to life was perfect.”
Variety also reports that is currently unclear whether the game will be a straightforward adaptation to bring the Marcus Fenix character to life of if the film will reiterate the game through a new protagonist.
“I think you have to let the movies be the movies,” Fergusson said. “They’re two different mediums, and two different audiences in some cases, and I think some video game movies in the past have failed because they tried to make a movie for gamers. If you have this great IP with a deep backstory and lots of lore that you can make interesting stories out of it’s great, but if you just go after the gaming audience then it isn’t going to be a successful movie.
“That’s one of the great things about working with Universal,” he continued. “We’re finding that line where we can say it has enough lore and canon that it feels genuine to the game while at the same time going beyond that and asking ‘OK what makes a great movie?’”
Let’s hope Fergusson is right, otherwise something tells me he’s about to miss the point here; Whether or not the film is made for gamers and moviegoers is irrelevant. In my view, what really matters is that said film adaptation has a good director and crew with the acumen and capacity to put in the work needed to fully tap into the source material and bring out the film’s best, and the ability to do so without the unnecessary involvement of studios trying to follow a formula for the sole purpose of making money, lest they forget the *other* purpose behind making the film in the first place.
At any rate, it is early and only just now circulating, so we’ll see how this goes in the next few years. My money is still on Assassin’s Creed this December, adding to my list, that is.