It’s been a mixed week so far in the mysterious land of video game adaptations. We got word yesterday that Dwyane Johnson was officially in board for a big screen take on monster mash gem Rampage. But now we have some bad news from the Uncharted camp. Although I suppose you might think this is all bad news if you’re not a fan of video game adaptations.
Empire is reporting that Seth Gordon has left the project as director. According to those in the know, Gordon left when the studio decided to shake things up with the creative direction of the film, which would result in trimming the budget here and there. As a result they’ve got a cheaper project and an empty director’s chair.
The majority of adaptations that don’t come from popular comic book or literary characters often had speed bumps getting out of development, but Uncharted has had more than most. In its brief infancy the project has gone through a mess of writers, including Kyle Ward, David O. Russell, Marianne and Cormac Wibberley, David Guggenheim and Mark Boal. As for directors, Neil Burger was involved before heading over to Divergent.
It’s a shame because the way the Uncharted games were designed makes them ideal for adaptation. The lots are engaging, in depth and self contained whilst still retaining the rocksteady simplicity required to make a lasting third person shooter. The button sequences alone take most of their cues from cinematic action sequences. However, while that might make storyboarding a doddle it doesn’t help when it comes to the cold, cold labyrinth of big studio logistics.
It’s unclear at the moment when Uncharted will resurface out of development, or if it ever will, but hopefully enough people want the project to succeed to keep the project alive. Should Uncharted remain uncharted?