Universal Pictures announced last night that they have signed on Pirates of the Caribbean director Gore Verbinski to direct and produce the video game to screen adaptation of Bioshock, the extremely popular video game from Take Two Interactive that has sold more than 2 million copies worldwide since its release last year.
Scribe John Logan, who has previously worked on the screenplays for Sweeney Todd, The Aviator and Gladiator, is in talks to write the screenplay. As Variety reports, good ole’ Take-Two Interactive appears to have cleaned house with the deal, getting a multimillion dollar advance against gross points on the film. This way if things go south on the production, a la the Halo movie, they will still make a decent amount of money. Not that they need it, because as I mentioned, their $50 a pop video game sold over 2 million copies. I’m not a math wiz, but that will pay for more than one Executive’s weekend hooker bill, that’s for sure.
As for the movie, in the hands of Gore Verbinski it is sure to come out the other side with two things going for it: It will look cool, which should be heartwarming news to Bioshock fans, as it is one of the coolest looking games around. As well, it will have its fair share of plot-lines. This is one area where the Pirates series was not lacking, as is explained in the following educational video:
So what is Bioshock going to be about, you ask? Well, for those who have not played the game, it takes place in an underground city called Rapture that is based on the free market principles of Ayn Rand. Unfortunately, those principles didn’t work out so well and something has gone terribly wrong. Players of the game control a pilot who crash-lands at a secret entrance to the city and is drawn into a power struggle during which he discovers that his will is not as free as he’d thought.
“I think the whole utopia-gone-wrong story that’s cleverly unveiled to players is just brimming with cinematic potential,” said Verbinski. “Of all the games I’ve played, this is one that I felt has a really strong narrative.”
Verbinski also noted that Rapture’s art deco design and visually arresting characters, such as the mechanical Big Daddys who protect genetically mutated girls called Little Sisters, particularly inspired him to see the game as a film.
Though no release date has been set, Verbinski did mention that he is planning on starting pre-production as soon as a script is turned in by John Logan and all involved approved — this includes Take-Two, who were very specific when they chose Verbinski to both produce and direct. “One of the things we decided early on is that we didn’t want to go through a producer,” said Strauss Zelnick, the company’s executive chairman. “It’s terribly important to us to have a meaningful influence on how this project is produced. We didn’t want any insulation between us.” So in other words, they want some creative control. I suppose I can live with that.
Alright, I am done jabbering on about this. It is time for you to weigh in…
Sound Off: What do you think of the choice of Gore Verbinski to produce and direct the Bioshock movie?
Video courtesy of Ask a Ninja