If it's crap ... We'll tell you
Studios buying the rights to popular videogames in order to turn them into potentially profitable films is nothing new. Unfortunately however, neither is the practice of sitting on those rights without doing anything with them. Such was the situation facing Epic Games' 'Gears of War.' The game first hit stores in 2006, becoming an instant success, and in 2007, New Line Cinema scooped up the rights to bring 'Gears of War' to the screen. But over the years, nothing has come of that project. At one point Len Wiseman ('Total Recall') was set to direct, with the latest version of the script having been written by Stuart Beattie ('G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra'), but that too fell through. Now it appears New Line has relinquished the rights to the game, instead choosing to focus on completing 'The Hobbit' trilogy. Epic Games is hoping to meet with producers in the coming weeks to establish a new home for the project.
I have a love hate relationship with films based on videogames. On the one hand, they don't have the best track record and are often pretty abysmal. On the other hand...'Street Fighter.' What? Don't judge. The storyline behind 'Gears of War' seems custom tailored for something big and cinematic. Human soldiers traveling to another planet to defend it against an alien race called the Locust Horde? Yeah, I'd watch that. I'm a bit baffled by the stalling of both this project and the 'Halo' movie. There is of course the possibility that the studios are nervous about sinking large amounts of money into videogame movies considering their aforementioned inclination toward schlock. But if the 'Resident Evil' franchise has taught us anything, it's that a videogame movie does not have to be good to make money. Hopefully a studio with some vision and talent for quality sci-fi can do something interesting with this.
What do you guys think? Would you be interested in seeing a 'Gears of War' movie? Who would you choose as director?