The Examiner has posted a list of 28 videogame movies that are currently in the works – that’s twenty-frikkin’-eight of them – and offers a brief look at each to determine which ones will suck. (Hint: The answer is “yes.”)
The videogame movie genre is like the cockroach of the industry: It’s indestructible. You could nuke Hollywood into smoldering, black glass and a month later you’d be watching a trailer for the Joust movie. And in case you’re curious, yes, there is a Joust movie in the works, “a mix of Gladiator and Mad Max, but futuristic.” Setting aside for the moment the fact that Mad Max was futuristic, what’s not to love? You might think they’d have more important things to worry about, but Midway is apparently looking to restart the franchise in the wake of the movie’s release.
You’ve almost certainly heard of some films on this list: The BioShock movie, for instance, directed by Gore Verbinski and set for release in 2010, and Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, starring Jake Gyllenhaal and also scheduled to come out in 2010. Others are a bit more obscure, however, like the Cold Fear film, which may or may not still be in production, or Fear Effect, based on the 2000 PlayStation title from Eidos.
A number of properties in the list have been licensed by studios but either haven’t entered production or are hanging in development limbo. The Suffering, for instance, was announced in 2005 but still doesn’t appear to have a writer or director, and the problems surrounding the on-again/off-again Halo film have been well-documented. And despite the dark history of videogame movies, there are at least a few projects in here that shouldn’t suck, even though they will: There’s no inherent reason why Splinter Cell, for instance, can’t be cool (at least as long as they hire Michael Ironside to overdub the actor playing Sam Fisher) and Driver could be a decent action-adventure flick along the lines of The Transporter.
On the other hand, the world needs another Street Fighter movie about as much as it needs a new Mortal Kombat movie. What’s that? Oh yes, we’re getting one of those too, and the rumor is that Christopher Lambert will once again portray Raiden, the god of thunder, lightning and awful, awful movies.