Prince Of Persia & Other “Game-to-Movie” Thoughts

Published 7 years ago by

prince of persia Prince Of Persia & Other Game to Movie Thoughts

If you’re keeping track, or looking for any tidbits, the much anticipated translation of the Ubisoft game, Prince of Persia, has reportedly started filming on the 16th of September.

As we’ve noted previously, Jake Gyllenhaal of Brokeback Mountain fame, stars in Prince of Persia: Sands of Time. Also starring in the flick are Gemma Arterton, Sir Ben Kingsley, Alfred Molina and Toby Kebbell.

The project is an effort between Walt Disney Pictures and Jerry Bruckheimer Films and is slated for a 2010 release. It’s about a prince who teams up with a rival princess to stop an angry ruler from doing some evil deeds.

So why am I not jazzed about the upcoming new video game-to-movie effort?

At the moment it seems to me that Prince of Persia has some serious industry backing with Disney and Bruckheimer. This combination alone gives me the sense that it has potential.

But what tempers my anticipation for Prince of Persia are the writers.

  • Carlo Bernard: Very limited experience of writing credits.
  • Jordan Mechner: Limited experience in writing credits, and most of them are related to video games.
  • Doug Miro: Three credits: One of them is Prince…, another is still to be released.
  • Boaz Yakin: Boaz has the most experience, and a few flicks I’ve actually heard of. Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights, From Dusk Till Dawn 2. Hmm… vampires and dancing. That should mix well with Persian prince politics. (I said “heard of”… I missed these two fine literary contributions to the annals of film.)

Besides filming having commenced, the only other news that’s come out of the project is about the new 22-year-old Bond girl, Gemma Arterton, moving in with the 19-year-old stuntman Eduardo Munoz, who was hired to teach her to ride horses for Prince. They said horses Eduardo. Horses! It must be chemistry because he’s already moved in with Gemma and she hired a translator to teach them each others language so they can understand each other… verbally. Kids. Sheesh. I give it till he end of filming, at best. Maybe they’ll learn enough vile language to learn how to break up properly.

The only salvation that keeps my eye in this direction is the director, Mike Newell. Newell has a history of success behind him, including putting the fantasy genre to screen. (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire) But he just may have his job cut out for him.

How Many Video Games Must We Suffer Through?

I have to confess that with my digital, 5-speaker surround sound computer system I like gaming. When I’m pinned by two armored vehicles and only 2 rockets and a couple of satchel charges to my digital name, it’s fun. Or when I’m driving my NASCAR simulator, the place shakes, windows rattle and the animals run for their lives in my place – hehe. But my motivation, my story is to destroy the other guy and not be destroyed or just move that other car… who cares what happens or why. Just go go go. My first online win came from a move sort of like that. Hehehe.

The aspect I ponder is how video games translate as a story into a movie? What’s my motivation? It’s a single emotion, maybe two. Escape some of my daily woes, destroy the enemy. But yet, on that premise alone, it seems that many games have been made into movies.

Many game-to-movie efforts have floundered, heck there were many I didn’t even know were translated to movies. Sometimes it seems that they hire actors who look like the game characters, hand them props from the game and thell them to run that way, and pull the trigger. Go go go!! That’s a wrap! Now jump through the window. That’s a wrap! If he survives, we’ll have him jump over a car! Dialog… Oh yeah… forgot that. Propmaster!!?? What do you think he might say here?

At the front of my brain is Dwayne (The Rock) Johnson in the translation of one of my old favorite first-person shooters, Doom! Despite the fact that I tend to gravitate to action oriented, lead splaying movies that just make me feel better after a rough day, it was just OK. Even I need some story behind the bullet distribution patterns.

The video game-to-movie rendition I’ve enjoyed was Resident Evil. I never played the game. I was too busy with Doom and all the add-ons, add-ins and add-to’s, but I liked the premise of Resident Evil, not to mention really enjoying watching Milla Jonovich kick butt.

Speaking of watching, I think when you “cross a Playboy Bunny with Bruce Wayne” archeologist type character in the Lara Croft films with Angelina Jolie, and add semi-Ok writing, it’s bound to be a hit and is one of my perennial favorites on the tube as repeats when nothing else is competing for my writers eye. (I hope my wife isn’t reading this.)

A lot of the time I can’t imagine trying to create a story out of a first person shooter that is a compelling tale to tell. To further complicate the situation is not committing the money and nabbing up-and-coming actors that may not have the draw of big names. The one flick I am not even holding my breath on is Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li starring Smallville’s Kristen Kreuk. Without a Clark to pine about, what will she do? Oh… did I just say that?

One movie that I think has a lot of anticipation is Max Payne. It stars Mark Wahlberg, and written by Shawn Ryan, whose latest endeavor includes The Shield. This flick is due to come out October 17th. The previews look like it doesn’t suck and it’s got me interested, unlike most previews of game-to-movies previews.

Yes, I’ve left out a lot of game-to-movie names. And there are a lot. So like I said, or recommend to the game / movie makers: If you don’t have the bucks, and can’t hire the big names, maybe it would be best if you just waited a bit to get the mula. I’d rather have a movie I’ve made to have a lasting impression than something that only gets remembered because it’s added to a list somewhere.

Just ask Bruce. He’ll tell ya’ like he sees it.

DISCLAIMER: When I say I enjoyed a game-to-movie translation, I did not say it was a fantastic, earth shattering story captivating movie. I just enjoy it for what it is. I thought I’d say that before you started slamming me for calling something good. It is good for the moment. Kind a’ like candy or beer.

Sources:, Daily, IMDB

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  1. I would think mass appeal is very critical. Without some form of marketing attraction, a game or movie won’t sell. On either platform.

    In the game, the appeal of being the hero up against incredible odds.
    In the movie, associating with the character.

  2. Yeah funny thing Ken, is that when I’m playing a game, I usually find myself board with the story and just want to get on with the game.
    The Cut scenes in HL2 annoyed me because you can’t skip them…
    Sometimes when that happens I become even less interested in the story,,,

  3. LOL, you’re like my friend, he only likes multiplayer since there is only action, no story to sit through. I’m the opposite, I enjoy my games like I enjoy my movies, I love a great story to pull me in. Makes the action more intense too, since I feel personally involved. Especially Half Life 2: Episode 1. In HL2, you see Alyx every now and then, but in HL2:E1, she’s basically your AI sidekick through the entire game, and you actually start caring for her safety. Because even though she’s AI and not real, they programmed her pretty well in E1 and sometimes if you get lost in the story you’re able to forget she’s not real.

    But yah, my friend usually hates single player. We have Call of Duty 4, which is a VERY short game, it’s like a 6-10 hour game I think, lol. And he hasn’t beat it yet, and I doubt he ever will.

    But he actually did play through all of Half Life 2, Episode 1, and Episode 2. So I guess he’s found one game where he liked the story. You should play Portal in the Orange Box, it’s a puzzle game with a little bit of a story, it’s pretty fun. :-)

  4. Well if the stories good I’m there, I personally don’t play online so the story means a little but not a lot. ;-)

    That’s funny about your friend, I beat Call of Duty 4 in less than 4 days.
    It was short but great. The Sniper level was the best also the gunner aircraft was awesome.
    It also had the BEST ending I’ve ever played in a game.

    BioShock also had a great story.
    I guess I do like the stories but the Half Life story didn’t blow me away. ;-)

    I’m ready for “Gears of War2″. If there’s a story in there I missed it.
    Just a bunch of crazy mutated beasts and some fun toys to blow them away with. (Good times)

  5. Yah, COD4 was about as short as games come, lol.

    I was thoroughly unimpressed with Gears of War, and when they said that those are some of the best graphics on the consoles, I had to laugh. The only reason why they THINK the graphics are good is because of the overuse of bump mapping, and bump mapping has been around in PC games for YEARS… And they WAY overdid the bump mapping in that game, even smooth surfaces were bump mapped like the fuselage of the Helicopter. It makes everything look like they are made of stucco for goodness sakes, lol.

  6. “BioShock also had a great story.”

    Glad to hear that team hasn’t lost their touch. I’ll have to make sure to buy the game one of these days.

  7. FlameStrike did you see (play) both endings to Bioshock ?

    I’ve heard one of the Studios is producing Bioshock, btw.

  8. I’ve never played BioShock at all, but it’s been called the “spiritual successor” to the System Shock games, of which I am a big fan. Both were made by many of the same people, thus my comment about the team not losing their touch.

  9. FlameStrike, when you play the game (BioShock) you can ether choose to be a hero to the little sisters or harvest them for there ADAM (power).

    If you only intend to play the game one time through, (imo) choose to save All of them,,, overall you get more power, achievments and the happy ending.

    If you choose to harvest them, the endings different, and you get less achievments.

  10. Cool. Knowing me, I’ll eventually try it both ways.

  11. Yeah the second time around you’ll know all the tricks, the Bid Daddys become easy to kill.
    Allways take advantage of attacking a Big Daddy by a Vita_chamber.
    They take on damage acumilativly, so you wanna keep nailing them with weapons. They eventually turn orange and explode.

  12. I’ll try to remember that. First things first, though, I’ve got to get a computer that can run the game, and I’ll probably play both System Shocks again before then as well.

    Which reminds me, does the game use audio logs to fill you in on the story, or some other means?

  13. You interact with characters around you. There’s also a man that will ask you kindly, to do things. 8-)

  14. Cool, that should make for an interesting change from being the only human survivor, and taking orders by email.


    Soul Calibur movie was going to be directed by Sammo Hung but things did not work out,so there could be some European and Japanese production companies to get the rights to adapt Soul Calibur in the future.

    The movie Onimusha has been put on hold so they would give them a chance to rewrite the plot to get rid of the Big Trouble In Little China storyline of the script and rework on the plot to follow the Onimusha Warlords storyline.
    Onimusha will be financed by Japanese and French companies plus there will be some Japanese music based on the games to be feature in the film by some Japanese music composers who did the Onimusha games.

    There is some talks on Japanese anime going itno live action movies like Akira,Dragonball and Ninja Scroll,Ninja Scroll will be developmed by the US production company Threshold Entertainment of Mortal Kombat movies and TV series.
    Ninja Scroll will have the music cover with techno with some Japanese electronic music composed by Ben Watkins and Jonathan Sloate.

    Thank you.

  16. “Boaz Yakin: Boaz has the most experience, and a few flicks I’ve actually heard of. Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights, From Dusk Till Dawn 2.”

    You mean you’ve never seen Fresh?
    A Price Above Rubies?

    Ok. Your critical cedibility has just dropped ten-fold.

  17. Sigh… I can only aspire to be such an experienced critic!

  18. So no one’s posted on this thread for awhile, so I doubt it will even be checked but I need to point out, I can’t believe no one mentioned Double Dragon. That was the first Video Game Movie to actually be done well. and of course Resident Evil, aside from that I haven’t been a fan of any. Prince of Persia had potential, cause I actually enjoyed the story to the Sands of time game as I played it, but from what I have seen so far I don’t think i’m going to be impressed. I’ll give it a chance tho, but only cause I’m a fan of the games.

  19. AhA! We are watching Gambit and good recall on Double Dragon there. And yea, we’re all waiting for decent game to movie rendition