Drew Karpyshyn Gives His Advice To The MASS EFFECT Feature Film

Drew Karpyshyn, who was the lead writer for BioWare's critically acclaimed Mass Effect 1 & 2 has spoken quite true words about how Hollywood should handle their upcoming film that may not make certain fans very happy...

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By Alex Lynch - 4/11/2013

One of the best parts of the Mass Effect franchise is how expansive it is with it's huge cast of species, characters and content. Each game can be spanned over dozens of hours of content depending on how the player progresses through the story. The series has also been expanded through novels, comics and animated movies. Other than knowing that the film is confirmed to feature a Male Shepard and center around the first game, we don't know much else.

While speaking to Kotaku, Drew Karpyshyn (who was the one of the biggest creative forces behind the series) let loose his thoughts on the Hollywood adaptation. “I think taking a video game and putting it into another form—book, movie, or whatever—is very complicated, especially a BioWare game. We have 30 hours of content!" Karpyshyn first noted. He then went on to say how most fans and players will be annoyed that their Shepard won't be featured in the film, saying “Obviously, you’re going to have to define Shepard which is going to annoy a lot of the fans. ‘Hey, my Shepard was female.’ ‘Hey, my Shepard was Paragon.’ Or ‘My Shepard didn’t have a romance.’ That is something you just can’t avoid as a film.”. Karpyshyn also noted that one of the negatives of adapting Mass Effect is that you'll have to remove many of the elements or fan-favorite characters. "What you have to do, and I know fans don’t want to hear this, but you have to remove some of those characters. I think you just have to realize we can’t tell everything that’s in the game in a two-hour movie. Some of them are just going to be cameos. Sometimes, Hollywood doesn’t want to annoy anybody. But to make it work you have to say, 'OK, you know what? I don’t know, maybe there’s no Tali." he said.

Later on in the interview, Karpyshyn finally gave his thoughts on what's absolutely NEEDED in the Mass Effect screenplay, so let's hope current scribe Morgan Davis Foehl is reading this. “As far as what I think they really need to leave in, for me, [Mass Effect is] really about this idea that humanity is the newcomer and trying to prove themselves to the other races or trying to find their place. Humans as newcomers will allow you to have these different species and lets viewers react to them. [...]It’s important to see that element in there as well and really get a sense that everybody is watching what humans do and the humans are trying to figure out their place in the universe. For me, I hope that’s one of the things I really hope they’re able to capture in the film if and when it ever gets made.” Karpyshyn explained.

There is currently no tentative release date for Mass Effect, but do you agree with everything Karpyshyn said? Do you think Mass Effect needs compression, and if so, who would you remove? Head over to Kotaku to read the interview in full.

Source: Kotaku
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gillri - 4/11/2013, 8:51 AM
Mass Effect > Star Wars & Middle earth

I just wish if they make a film it has more the retro 70's stylings of ME1...although ME2 is still my favourite
StrangerX - 4/11/2013, 8:52 AM
Mass Effect is cool and all, but Drew can you get on Disney about making one of their solo films into Darth Bane: Rule Of Two.
ndwwrestler2 - 4/11/2013, 8:53 AM
I would LOVE a Mass Effect Movie directed by Danny Boyle, and although I'm not too big on leaving characters out, it might actually be a good idea for them to do so.
Christuffer - 4/11/2013, 8:53 AM
If there is no Tali, I'm going to assassinate whoever made that decision.

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R888 - 4/11/2013, 8:56 AM
Mass effect film will be great :) tomb raider doing it
R888 - 4/11/2013, 8:57 AM
If there no garrus I will kill someone
jj2112 - 4/11/2013, 8:57 AM
Before seeing the movie, audiences should vote if they want the red, the blue or the green ending.
InfiniteMonkey - 4/11/2013, 8:59 AM
Neil Blomkamp should do this bit if they know what's good for them.

[frick] Khan!
Kayo - 4/11/2013, 8:59 AM
please be good

SwingsetKnight - 4/11/2013, 9:00 AM
No Tali? [frick]ing blasphemy. Eliminate Liara or Williams if you must, damn it, but Tali stays!

Or, actually, leave Williams in the movie, but have Shepard "accidentally" back over her with his insane, back-flipping jeep thing.
TheRationalNerd - 4/11/2013, 9:01 AM
Shepard, Garrus, Liara are they key characters needed for all films!!!!
MrMartinMarvel - 4/11/2013, 9:01 AM
Still waiting on those Assassin's Creed, and Uncharted movies.
TheRationalNerd - 4/11/2013, 9:02 AM
prettynucIear - 4/11/2013, 9:02 AM
maybe they can fix the ending. get this, the reapers could be time travelers. they don't wait 50,000 year to harvest and they just travel to the future.
TheRationalNerd - 4/11/2013, 9:03 AM

Especially Uncharted! It has enough potential to be this generations Indiana Jones if directed and casted right! Really hope we see an Uncharted film series sooner than soon.
Cass808 - 4/11/2013, 9:06 AM
If they want to do a Mass Effect movie they should really feature none of the game elements at all. Fair enough that stuff about Earth being the newcomer and everything, but i dont think it would be a good idea to spoil shepherd for anyone. I dont think even the reavers are necessary.
ForeverPowerful - 4/11/2013, 9:11 AM
Just make the movie set in the universe, make nods to Shepard, have Garrus and Tali and whoever cameo, but make new characters and a new threat.

Then when the new games come out, have nods to the movies or have the characters show up as cameos.

And JJ Abrams for Mass Effect.
TheRationalNerd - 4/11/2013, 9:11 AM

ForeverPowerful - 4/11/2013, 9:13 AM
If its set in the timeline of Mass Effet 1-3 that is. Shepard wasnt the only one fighting the reapers.

If its set in Mass Effect 4s timeline, then I dont know, because they havent said how far in the future it is yet.
gillri - 4/11/2013, 9:13 AM

cant see an uncharted movie being any good seeing how much derivative it is

he Mass Effect universe is so vast and enticing its begging to be expanded upon, an AC movie seems like a good idea though
JeffG - 4/11/2013, 9:22 AM
Would prefer A TV show that spans 6 seasons. 2 seasons for each portion of the trilogy.
SuperLuchador - 4/11/2013, 9:29 AM
This would be a golden opportunity for Hollywood to make female shepard as the main character. I like Garrus and Liara but I must say that Wrex and Grunts are very memorable characters.
DarthDan - 4/11/2013, 9:34 AM
DarthDan - 4/11/2013, 9:35 AM
Hey Gusto, why is your pedo van parked in front of my house?
DarthDan - 4/11/2013, 9:37 AM
@StrangerX - I cannot agree with you more.... his books are the prob the best from the Star Wars EU
ParisSun - 4/11/2013, 9:40 AM
You probably just go without Ash or Kaiden. Wrex would also be better as a cameo. Don't see how you can lose Garrus, Liara and Tali.
mumbz - 4/11/2013, 9:44 AM
very interesting hmmm
Ocelot - 4/11/2013, 9:53 AM
@ParisSun Wrex is just as important as garrus or tali, so no a cameo for Wrex wont be good enough.

Dont know how they would solve the whole renegade/paragon thing and the morality decisions, also what class would shepard be? Also Shepard would have to be the main character
DioFoRio - 4/11/2013, 9:59 AM
LMAO@ Gusto's "playpen". Creepy bro ,creepy....should I bring chips and pop?
DioFoRio - 4/11/2013, 10:00 AM
they should tell a parallel story that takes place during the main time and only mention Sheppard by name and leave it ambiguous.
agentmi5 - 4/11/2013, 10:01 AM
Vadakin - 4/11/2013, 10:04 AM
He didn't write Mass Effect 3 and look what happened - Casey Hudson stroking his ego, trying to be profound and instead presenting something that ended up being nonsensical and illogical. ME3 broke my heart with that ending. One 20 minute sequence in a hundred hours across three games ruins a trilogy and makes it all pointless. If a movie ever gets to the story of ME3, changing the ending would be a huge improvement.
Vadakin - 4/11/2013, 10:05 AM
As for what they should do with a Mass Effect movie, they've said it won't be based on the games and it doesn't have to be. Just make a prequel about the FIrst Contact War between the Earth Alliance and the Turians. If that's a success, then you can get into the whole Reaper thing.
DanielSon15 - 4/11/2013, 10:05 AM
I think they should do female Shepard

I played a male and I'm not to crazy about game fem shep

But how many strong female protagonists are in movies, especially sci fi saving the universe type movies

Make her a slight renegade and don't call into attention she's a girl and you'll make movie history
Mars3times - 4/11/2013, 10:14 AM
Very well put. Very realistic and understandable. Theres so many people who create things that get adapted and just bash the people adapting it because they dont understand how movies work.
Ocelot - 4/11/2013, 10:27 AM
@Vadakin basing it on the first contact war, would just turn it into another typical alien invasion movie, mass effect is more than that, also the first contact war was a relatively small conflict which only lasted for 3 months. Though they could change it for the films
TheOnlyWoj - 4/11/2013, 11:53 AM
wrong. you use the WOJ model.

two films, same cast EXCEPT for Shepard.

one male, 70/30 Paragon, save Ashley, with a Liara/Tali romance
one female, 70/30 Renegade, save Kaiden, with maybe Kaiden/Thane romance

money would be saved using sets/effects, non-lead character (Shepard) scenes, reusing actors

example: entire crew might be on missions with Shepard, but he always goes out with 2 others (separate into small groups).

this allows the characters to still get featured time in the opposing films, especially with regard to how they pair with Shepard's class (which I see as maleShep as Infiltrator and femShep as a Vanguard).

there could also be things like maleShep rescuing Liara before going after Benezia, and the reverse happening with femShep.

only constant in ME1 is Wrex ... keep that [frick]er alive.

ME2, a few of the loyalty missions could be used (I really liked Samara's, Grunt's) but others could be montaged or just excised competely. Or maleShep does a few, femShep does a few -- each for different characters depending on choices made and their relationships. for the suicide mission, maybe a few different characters are lost. since Thane isn't as important to maleShep's story, he might die there, but not in femSheps.

what I love about my idea is that, by ME3, you have two very different scenarios set up, regarding Shepard's relationship with the characters, who is alive, etc.

this would be an opportunity to do something really unique on film, as opposed to a singular translation.

and the most important part of Mass Effect that would be translated? the importance of CHOICE.
MisterNiceGuy - 4/11/2013, 12:22 PM
the Tali romance was the best one IMO
Kyos - 4/11/2013, 2:18 PM
Mass Effect movies are a bad idea if they try to adapt the games. Just... don't.
DrainBamage - 4/11/2013, 2:44 PM
And on that note, DO NOT make a Mass Effect film.

I love ME. Played through each game multiple times. Just like Karpyshyn said, it would be difficult to convert this kind of game to film.
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