David O. Russell seemingly kicked the hornet’s nest when he opened up about the plot of his video game movie project, Uncharted – which had already attracted a fair amount of negative buzz (pun intended) from fans when the news broke that Mark Wahlberg will play Nathan Drake.
Uncharted 3 game director, Justin Richmond, spoke out about the movie recently and claimed that neither Wahlberg or Russell’s “family dynamic” storyline was a sure thing. However,
The Happening actor Wahlberg seems confident that he is in fact onboard for Uncharted.
Wahlberg and Russell’s most recent collaboration, The Fighter, has emerged as a serious contender (pun intended, again) in this year’s Oscar race, but the former still found time to chat with Moviehole about his upcoming projects. With regards to Uncharted, Wahlberg says that Russell is in the midst of writing the screenplay (and hopes to direct it as well), while he and fellow tough guy types Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci are up to appear as descendants and relatives of the 16th century British sea captain, Sir Francis Drake.
To recap: Wahlberg has specifically revealed that De Niro and Pesci will play his father and uncle in Uncharted, which Russell envisions as “an international action picture” that incorporates a family dynamic into the main globe-trotting adventure storyline (think the third Indiana Jones movie) – one that may or may not feature El Dorado as a MacGuffin, like in the original games.
A recorded encounter between a devoted Uncharted game fan and Russell raised the question as to whether fan-favorite Nathan Fillion could still star in the movie adaptation. As Browncoats (re: Firefly/Serenity fans) know all too well, the role of quick-witted, treasure hunter Nathan Drake seems almost tailor-made for the Castle star – or at least for someone whose screen persona seems a good fit to play the rugged but charming type.
Movie versions of beloved video games have a poor track record when it comes to quality – for every one that turns out okay, like the first Mortal Kombat or Prince of Persia: The Sand of Time, there seem to be several on par with Super Mario Bros. or… anything made by Uwe Boll. That in part accounts for why fans tend to scrutinize every decision made when a filmmaker attempts to bring a console game to the big screen. Wahlberg was already given the chance to play a video game icon in the Max Payne movie, but fans largely walked away from that film unimpressed.
Uncharted is relatively cinematic in its plot and design, so it seems a natural choice to make the leap from game to film. Russell also has a very solid track record as a writer-director, so perhaps his casting choices and deviations from the source material will turn out better than a number of fans seem to think right now.
There’s no official word yet as to when Uncharted is expected to hit theaters, but Wahlberg claims that production could get underway by this summer. While we wait to hear more, feel free to let us know your thoughts on the project in the comments section below.