Prince of Persia is having a rather poor and disappointing box office performance, only $62 million domestic, proving once again that American audiences are not fond of how Hollywood does video game movies.
I wrote a recent tongue-in-cheek post on why Hollywood is picking the wrong games to adapt. The poor box office numbers and critical responses haven’t stopped Hollywood from continuing to try again and again. If anything, you have to admire their “stick-to-it-ness”.
Nu Image and Millennium announced a while back they would be producing an adaptation of the violent console video game Kane and Lynch and the project got some clout when Bruce Willis and Jamie Foxx were cast as the leads.
Until creative differences got in the way last month, stunt coordinator Simon Crane (Salt, Hancock) was set to direct Kane and Lynch. That left the studio with a short list of directors to choose from – Wayne Kramer (Running Scared), Roger Donaldson (Dante’s Peak) and F. Gary Gray (Set It Off).
It appears that F. Gary Gray was the cream that rose to the top of Nu Image’s crop, because he is now in talks to direct Willis and Foxx as Kane and Lynch. Gray has had some hits and a few misses in his career; he most recently worked with Foxx in last year’s mediocre thriller Law Abiding Citizen. His other hits include Friday, The Negotiator and The Italian Job but his misses include Be Cool and A Man Apart.
Kane and Lynch’s video game plot is a straight forward scenario allowing 1 or 2 players to work together to escape from prison. Kane is on death row and Lynch is a psychopathic killer who is broken out of jail by a mercenary group called The7. The mercenaries think Kane stole something from them and they want it back, so they kidnap Kane’s wife and daughter to force him to surrender the purloined item.
It works as a video game story because the it’s very linear – kill this guy, then that guy, then that guy and then that guy. However, as a movie plot it doesn’t seem to me that it would work very well. Greenhorn writer Kyle Ward is going to have his work cut out for him, turning this murder-by-numbers plot into a comprehensible 90-minute film story.
What are your thoughts on F. Gary Gray getting behind the camera to direct Kane and Lynch and do you think this video game adaptation has a chance at being good?
Kane and Lynch opens in 2011.
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