Game Rant’s most anticipated game of 2011 isn’t even releasing in 2011 anymore, but we’re still just as excited. Of course, that game is Mass Effect 3 and we’ve been loving every bit of it, from the first screenshot and trailer to our E3 demo and Comic-Con 2011 hands-on. But that’s not what we’re going to discuss here and instead, we’re going to step into the dreaded territory of video game movie adaptations…
As our own Christian Spicer put it in the latest edition of Game Rant Minute, there’s a good argument for why movie tie-ins and other licensed games shouldn’t exist, but there’s perhaps an even stronger argument for why movies based on video games also shouldn’t exist.
From Doom and Max Payne to Prince of Persia and Wing Commander, studios and the creative minds taking on the script writing and directorial duties behind some of the biggest video game adaptations consistently fail at delivering quality films. Worse, many of the adaptations don’t even stay true to key elements of the games, so what’s the point?
Because of this disastrous trend, video game publishers and film studios have learned and are not jumping as quickly or blindly into the easy cash grab. We saw the Halo and Gears of War films both stalled, and the developers behind Metal Gear Solid won’t dare let a studio tarnish their brand name. Even Valve admitted recently that if there’s a movie to be made off of their works (see: Half-Life), they’ll do it themselves.
More recently, the Uncharted film saw its director David O. Russell and star Mark Wahlberg part ways from the project due to the fan uproar against their non-Uncharted ideas for the film and while all of this is happening, major publishers have begun to start their own film studios. Ubisoft Motion Pictures and Rockstar Films are just the beginning as video game developers and publishers seek to take creative control of their own intellectual property.
What does this all mean? I’ve been saying for a few years, but the reality is that sooner rather than later, the bubble will burst and an amazing, true-to-the-source video game movie will hit theaters, become a box office success and most importantly, fans will love it. When that day comes, the film industry will push full steam ahead into the video game genre and many hot video game franchises will see their brands greenlighted into feature film projects. Video game movies will become the new comic book movie and it’s only a matter of time.
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