UNCHARTED Movie Close, MASS EFFECT Movie 5 To 6 Years Away
Producer Avi Arad is seeking to work the same magic for video game movies that he did for comic book movies (see Spider-Man and Blade). In a new interview, Arad updates the status of the Uncharted, Mass Effect and Metal Gear Solid movies.
Producer Avi Arad has his hand in a lot 'jars' these days and not just comic book movies. His new Pac-Man animated television show on Disney XD is a surprise hit but he's got bigger plans for video games. Arad wants to make the genre of video game movies just as big as comic book movies. Arad praises the success of the Resident Evil film series but thinks video game movies have yet to have that game changing production that changes public perception. "Converting games to film hasn’t been done yet successfully, though Resident Evil did very well—it was actually a great series. I remember when [producer] Bernd Eichinger started it,” said Arad. He continued, ”I was working with him, I just couldn’t do that at Marvel but I had a good feeling about it, it’s a fantastic franchise. I think that film studios are bankers and filmmakers are risk takers and somewhere in between we meet on the battlefield. And the moment one video game movie goes through the roof, it’s the same thing that I’ve been through with comic books.”
In a new interview, Arad made it sound like the Uncharted movie is furthest along out of his many video game movie projects that also include Mass Effect, Metal Gear Solid and inFAMOUS.“I think the Uncharted movie will be very successful. It’s a father and son game. There are things about it that are interesting. I think the world of antiquities theft, there are many countries in the world that realized they’re being robbed and they’re trying to recoup these important pieces. Now, the script has a lot of character [and] I think that has a shot at being the first one [to succeed].” Uncharted is currently set up at Sony and features a script that was originally penned by Joshua Oppenheimer and Thomas Dean Donnelly (Conan the Barbarian) but has since been rewritten by Marianne and Cormac Wibberley (National Treasure). At one point in time, director David O. Russell (Silver Linings Playbook) and actor Mark Wahlberg (The Fighter) were both attached to the project but they’ve both departed to pursue other endeavors.
The next closest project to fruition appears to be the Metal Gear Solid movie. However, that's still three or more years away according to Arad. Like the Uncharted movie, the Metal Gear Solid adaptation is set up at Sony yet, Arad cautions that negotiations between Sony and Konami could take a while. In the meantime, Arad says he remains in close contact with Metal Gear creator Hideo Kojima.
The movie that seems to be the farthest away is the Mass Effect adaptation. The project is currently set up at Legendary Pictures, who just jumped ship from Warner Bros. to partner with Universal Pictures. “It’s a big idea, that we, humans, are the least developed, the least trusted, it’s an interesting image of our world, we are the aliens now,” said Arad of the adaptation. ”Love the project, it’s getting there, it’s been a lot of work; some movies take five, six years before they’re ready.” Legendary is currently working on bringing a World of Warcraft film to movie screens, whose success I imagine, will ultimately dictate the fate of Mass Effect.
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