Since before I even began writing about movies four years ago or video games three years ago, I’ve been preaching the imminent crossover of the two industries. Yes, there have been many films over the years based on popular video game properties but for the most part, games based on movies and movies based on games have rarely offered quality, critically acclaimed products.
This is about to change and when it does, the floodgates will open allowing for the video game movie genre to compete with and/or start to take over the comic book movie genre with a massive influx of major video game properties. One major franchise that’s had an adaptation on the back burner for years is Metal Gear Solid, a brand that now has a movie in the works (again).
When development was halted nearly three years ago, Mike De Luca said the following in talking about why he didn’t believe Metal Gear Solid would be moving forward at the time – it was an issue of the creators and the studios not coming to an agreement:
“I think there’s some things…the video game companies are very protective of their property and there are certain things a studio requires freedom-wise to market and distribute a movie effectively in a global marketplace and sometimes getting those two things to match up is really hard. And in the case of Metal Gear Solid, the agendas just….not because the parties weren’t amicable, it was just kind of impossible to get the agendas to match up.”
And rightfully so. Look at Doom, Max Payne, BloodRayne, Street Fighter, Tekken, Far Cry, and Prince of Persia for examples of video game adaptations done wrong. It’s no wonder studios have been weary of pulling the production trigger on so many of the bigger franchises. Even Resident Evil, while financially successful with its fifth installment coming next month, doesn’t tell the stories of the games, stars a character not from the games and hasn’t even managed a score above 34% on Rotten Tomatoes in any of its installments.
The voice actor behind Metal Gear Solid protagonist Solid Snake, David Hayter (and writer of X-Men), reaffirmed the developmental hurdles for Metal Gear Solid nearly half a year later, explaining that the movie would not be moving forward until Sony and creator Hideo Kojima could come to an agreement. Skip forward over two years to present, and during Konami’s 25th anniversary party for the Metal Gear franchise today, Kojima came on stage, joined by Avi Arad (ex-Marvel CEO and producer of most Marvel films) to make a special announcement.
The event was already host to several major announcements including a new ambitious video game title called Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes along with a social game titled Metal Gear Solid: Social Ops, but what Arad had to say was an even bigger surprise. The Metal Gear Solid movie is back on track and will officially be made by Sony’s Columbia Pictures. Arad:
“For many years I fought to bring comics to theater – and video games are the comics of today… We will take our time and tell the story with all the nuances, ideology, and cautionary tales needed.”
We agree! Much like Arad helped realize a large variety of comics properties into live-action entertainment, in recent years he’s been on the hunt for the next big thing. Four years ago he picked up the rights to Mass Effect before the sequels even debuted and not too long before that, he nabbed the rights to Capcom’s Lost Planet franchise as well. He’s also backing Twisted Metal and Uncharted as another two game-to-film franchises for Sony.
With Metal Gear Solid back on track, Shadow of the Colossus getting a director (after three-four years of development) and Assassin’s Creed – along with Ghost Recon and Splinter Cell – in the works at the newly formed Ubisoft Motion Pictures (a studio created to maintain creative control over Ubisoft franchises), it’s only a matter time before other canceled/delayed non-Sony properties resurface as well – like Gears of War and Halo.
The question is which one will represent the first huge success at the box office, and for fans and critics?
If you missed it, check out the badly photoshopped movie poster for Metal Gear Solid featuring Daniel Craig and Christian Bale from a few years back.
Source: The Verge