Video game movies suck.
That simple statement stands alongside ‘Collect Stars’ and ‘Press X not to Die’ as central laws in the universe of video games and gamers. Still, it’s not like that has ever stopped anyone from trying. On the surface I guess this makes sense; After all, games now have budgets to rival hollywood blockbusters and an audience that most movies would kill to match. So surely all of that goodwill should make for some easy box office success right?
That is, unless you stop to consider that most games are intentionally light in the story department so that the player (i.e you and me) can fill the story in themselves by taking part. That approach doesn’t translate so well to film.
So, say for example you have a game franchise that’s primarily known for over-the-top gameplay, a handful of stock characters (both bad guys and good) and a juvenile sense of humor it might struggle to be adapted. You know, like Borderlands.
Wait…They’re making a Borderlands movie?
I’m gonna go lay down, in the meantime you can check out the full press release below:
Lionsgate Partners With Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc., Gearbox Software and Producers Avi and Ari Arad on Film Adaptation of Blockbuster Video Game Borderlands®Santa Monica, CA, and New York, NY, August 28, 2015 – Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), a premier next generation global content leader, is teaming with the publisher and creators of Borderlands®, and renowned producers Avi and Ari Arad to adapt Gearbox Software’s critically-acclaimed blockbuster video game Borderlands into a tent-pole feature film, the parties announced today. Borderlands is an action role-playing first-person shooter video game created and developed by Gearbox Software and published by 2K, a wholly owned label of Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. (NASDAQ: TTWO).The award-winning Borderlands franchise has been lauded by critics and over the years has built a passionate global fan base, shipping more than 26 million copies around the world since its launch in 2009, including 8 million copies shipped during Take Two’s fiscal year 2015 alone. Set in the frontier of a sci-fi universe, Borderlands is best known for Gearbox’s blending of irreverent humor and characters, with a unique comic-book art style, and co-operative four-player genre-bending, loot-grabbing gameplay. It’s a franchise that in the last six years has ushered in a new and popular category of first-person shooters.The Borderlands film creative team will be led by producers Avi and Ari Arad, who are responsible for some of the most successful motion picture and television franchises in history, including Iron Man, Spider Man, The Amazing Spider Man, X-Men, Ghost Rider and Blade.“We believe that we’ve brought together the right partners, the ideal creative team and the perfect property to launch a new motion picture tent-pole for a global audience,” said Lionsgate Motion Picture Group Co-Chairs Rob Friedman and Patrick Wachsberger. “Part of our strategy in entering the game space under Peter Levin has been to source new brands with built-in audiences that will translate into great films and television shows. The Borderlands games don’t pull any punches, and we’ll make the movie with the same in-your-face attitude that has made the series a blockbuster mega-franchise.”“Our Borderlands franchise continues to grow in popularity, and we’ve assembled a team with the strengths needed to introduce this amazing cross-platform property to a whole new global audience,” said Take-Two Interactive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Strauss Zelnick. “Lionsgate has emerged as a major creative force in the global marketplace with an incredible portfolio of brands; our partners at Gearbox have pioneered and cultivated an iconic property; and Avi and Ari Arad are two of the most successful producers of action franchises. This alliance is ideally positioned to create a bold, provocative, no-holds-barred motion picture phenomenon that will delight Borderlands’ current legions of fans and captivate moviegoers around the world.”“We’re thrilled to extend our partnership with Jon Feltheimer, Michael Burns, Rob, Patrick and the amazing team at Lionsgate and join forces with Take-Two and Gearbox on this incredible property,” said Avi and Ari Arad. “Borderlands has a unique story-driven narrative energy and rich multidimensional characters that position it to become a singular motion picture event.”“Creating, developing and continuing to build the Borderlands franchise at Gearbox Software has been an incredible ride where the most powerful fuel to our engine has been the astonishing outpouring of love and devotion from the fans,” said Randy Pitchford, President and Co-Founder of Gearbox Software. “It is the passion of the fans driving the growing success of Borderlands that brought what I believe to be the best team of film producers, marketing and distribution experts in the world together to deliver the exciting story and unique characters of Borderlands to the big screen.”The deal was orchestrated by a Lionsgate team led by President of Interactive Ventures & Games Peter Levin, Summit Entertainment President of Production Geoff Shaevitz and Lionsgate Motion Picture Group President of Business & Legal Affairs Patricia Laucella.
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