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Fox And Universal Say Goodbye To Halo Movie 310

Posted by Zonk
from the series-of-unfortunate-events dept.
Master_of_Tumbleweeds writes "20th Century and Universal Pictures, the two studios that agreed to co-finance the film adaptation of Microsoft's Halo video game, have abruptly pulled out of the project. This leaves executive producers Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh without financing or distribution. A ballooning budget (rumored to have been closing in on the $200 Mil mark) and apparent lack of confidence in rookie feature film director Neill Blomkamp are being named the major culprits for Fox and Universal's decision."
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Fox And Universal Say Goodbye To Halo Movie

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  • by manno (848709) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:14AM (#16515737)
    At .2 billion, I can't blame them.
    • by AKAImBatman (238306) * <akaimbatman AT gmail DOT com> on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:23AM (#16515861) Homepage Journal
      To put this into perspective:

      - Batman Begins was estimated at $150,000,000
      - The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring was estimated at $93,000,000
      - The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers was estimated at $94,000,000
      - The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King was estimated at $94,000,000
      - King Kong was estimated at $207,000,000
      - Star Wars Episode III was estimated at $113,000,000
      - X-Men 3 was estimated at $210,000,000

      Long story short, Jackson would have to prove that a video game movie would appeal to a wide enough audience to justify comparing it to King Kong and X-Men 3. Considering that video game movies always do poorly, I can see why the studios don't believe him.
      • by adam (1231) * on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:38AM (#16516019)
        Video game movies do not always do well.. but they don't, "always do poorly," as you've stated. Sure, Doom barely broke even after dvd/vhs rental (yet they're making a second [last I heard].. so that says something). But Tomb Raider grossed $131M in the US alone, with another $60M in rental market (plus foreign box office, merchandising, etc). With a production budget of $80M, that's a nifty return. I do agree with you though, the $141M budget that the article quotes is quite excessive for the genre. When examining whether it will be profitable you have to look at many things, and just being a video game movie isn't enough to doom you (no pun intended) to failure.

        If you look at the current trend, it seems that video game movies are getting pretty popular. Comic book movies have become insanely popular in the last 5-8 yrs and it seems to me virtually anything comic book related at all gets automatic greenlight nowadays (GHOST RIDER? I'd never even heard of this comic before I saw the trailer-- granted, i am not a comic fan, but certainly part of the draw of comic movies is a base association with a variety of users beyond just hardcore fans). Anyway, I digress, my point is simply, maybe executives are seeing some possibilities/trends in video game movies, --at least this is my conclusion based off the number that are slated for production currently..

        the list below was shamelessly poached from a wikipedia list i found, and then edited to remove probably 10-15 video games i don't recognize [see last paragraph for my reasoning behind this]

        * Castlevania (2007)
        * Doom 2 (TBA)
        * Driver (2006)
        * Duke Nukem: The Movie (TBA)
        * Far Cry (2008)
        * Halo (2008)
        * Max Payne (2007)
        * MechWarrior (TBA)
        * Metal Gear Solid (2008)
        * Metroid (2006)
        * Mortal Kombat: Devastation (2007)
        * Pac-Man (2007)
        * Perfect Dark (2008)
        * Quake (TBA)
        * Resident Evil: Extinction (2007)
        * Resident Evil 4 (2007)
        * Return to Castle Wolfenstein (TBA)
        * Splinter Cell (2006)
        * Tekken (2007)
        * Tomb Raider III (TBA)
        * Untitled WarCraft Project (2008)

        So, anyway, for the most part, I agree with you.. they have their work cut out for them, but I believe is the storyline does its own thing (And doesn't stick too much to the exact game), with Jackson behind it, it could do quite well.

        Also, as an aside, I have you "friended" on /., and do thoroughly enjoy reading most of your comments. This is the first time i've had the chance to reply to a "friend," since I mostly lurk (and generally only post in articles relating to digital cinema, or film stuff.. since that is what I do). Keep up the good comments ;)
        • Sure, Doom barely broke even after dvd/vhs rental (yet they're making a second [last I heard].. so that says something).

          FWIW, I actually thought Doom was the best video game movie ever made. I was especially impressed by the training they received to "look" like real soldiers. If it hadn't pumped up the expectations for extreme violence so much, it probably would have done even better.

          But Tomb Raider grossed $131M in the US alone, with another $60M in rental market (plus foreign box office, merchandising, etc). With a production budget of $80M, that's a nifty return.

          Let's be honest, though. Tomb Raider sold heavily on sex appeal rather than story line. The movie itself was less than spectacular.

          If we ignore that and take the profits at face value, then we're still nowhere near close enough to make a $200,000,000 movie. The total return on Tomb Raider was less than it would cost to finance a $200,000,000 movie, much less make a profit on it. :(

          I believe is the storyline does its own thing

          I agree completely. The story is key to making a good movie. Traditionally, Comic Book movies only did so-so themselves. That is, until some real talent started stepping up to the plate and adding incredible storytelling behind them. However, comic books have incredible amounts of storyline to pick and chose from. Video Games do not have that luxury, and may even be unsuitable for live-action. (Witness: Super Mario Bros.) In addition, many comic books are culturally iconic, allowing them to reach an audience far beyond the actual readership. This is something that video games rarely share.

          Also, as an aside, I have you "friended" on /., and do thoroughly enjoy reading most of your comments. This is the first time i've had the chance to reply to a "friend," since I mostly lurk (and generally only post in articles relating to digital cinema, or film stuff.. since that is what I do). Keep up the good comments ;)

          Actually, that double-green bubble means that I'm a friend of a friend. You never actually marked me as such. But thank you for your kind words. I'd try to keep my comment quality high. :)
          • by c6gunner (950153) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:25AM (#16516663)
            FWIW, I actually thought Doom was the best video game movie ever made. I was especially impressed by the training they received to "look" like real soldiers.

            That's just really, REALLY sad. Take it from a real soldier: they "looked" like a bunch of second-rate actors trying way too hard, and failing miserably. The special effects were the only cool thing about the whole movie, and the "kill mode" part (or whatever you want to call it) killed even that. I'm a huge fan of Halo, but seeing the fiasco that Doom got turned into actually makes me wish that they'd scrap the Halo movie. After playing the game and reading the books, I REALLY don't need to be traumatized by seeing it raped on the big-screen.
        • by Hoi Polloi (522990) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:11AM (#16516485) Journal
          Video game movies are bad ideas. The game is made for interactive play with a story line usually tacked on out of obligation. I'm glad Fox wised up (now if they could just dump their news division). I suspect that some consultants are going to studio heads and pushing the "Look how video games have become a $x billion dollar industry. Look at the demographics! You'd be a fool not to make crappy movies based on them." I'm surprised they aren't soing "World of Warcraft" or "Grand Theft Auto".

          I'm still waiting for "Pac Man, The Movie" starring John Goodman as a man with an uncontrolable appetite who is literally haunted by ghosts from his past. Oh shit, I just spotted it on your list. Please god, send that asteroid now!
          • by patrixmyth (167599) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:50AM (#16517091)
            Space Invaders-
            Plot- Orderly flying aliens destroy New York City, floor by floor.
            Stars- Jackie Chan, Shaquille O'Neal and love interest Paris Hilton.
            Scene Take-
            Shaq: Jackie, [mumble] aliens [mumble] have to [mumble] Wall Street.
            (Jackie Chan begins climbing UN Building, swinging from flag to flag.)
            Paris: I think the aliens are hot.

            Breakout-
            Plot- After construction fraud results in shoddy construction at a maximum security prison, a pair of wrongly convicted prisoners plot their escape on the handball court.
            Stars- The Rock, Nicholas Cage, Dave Chapelle (who dies during the escape) and Bill Mahr as the bumbling warden.
            Scene Take-
            Chapelle: Are you two stupid? You don't think anyone's going to notice you knocking the damn back wall down? Forget this! I'm gonna go see if the warden needs any more weed.
            The Rock: I don't want to do this, but the Warden's left me no other choice.
            Nicholas Cage stares out window intently.
            (Meanwhile in the Warden's office)
            Mahr (on phone): New Rule! If the prisoners have multiple life terms, they must attend the buddhist prayer services, so they will come back here in their next life too!

            Asteroids-
            Plot: A giant asteroid is heading towards Earth and the only hope is a crack team of oil drillers.
            Stars: Bruce Willis, Ben Affleck and love interest Liv Tyler with Steve Buschemi as the lovable freak.
            Scene- Oh wait, never mind....

               
          • by kbg (241421) on Friday October 20, 2006 @12:25PM (#16518369)
            No this is the ultimate Pac Man Movie :)

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fWL6j0SvqV0 [youtube.com]
        • I cannot begin to imagine what a Pac-Man film would look like....
        • by rolfwind (528248)
          Tying it to a franchise is no guarantee of failure or success, just that more people will be aware of it and receptive to it.

          A movie still has to be good in it's own right to succeed. Many filmmakers/studios seem to forget that, stick the entire budget into buying the rights, and then fail to get a decent writer/director/actors for it.
        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by nasch (598556)
          Argh, why not StarCraft?? So much material there to make a movie from!
        • by omeomi (675045) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:10AM (#16517401) Homepage
          * Duke Nukem: The Movie (TBA)

          Ha! Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!

          Man, I'm gonna start announcing Duke Nukem products that I have no serious intent or means to bring to market. Duke Nukem airlines, anyone? How about Duke Nukem cola?
      • by Lumpy (12016)
        To put this in a better perspective....

        Doom the movie $60 million.

        it sucked hard... so hard that people walking past the theatre were pulled up against the doors of the theatre it was playing in causing lots of extra work by theatre staff to pull partons off the doors while it ran.

        DVD sales were dismal, and most Sci-fi and gaming fans hate it as well.

        All other video game movies sucked as well, so going into this most everyone can see that it was pretty much a wash and was getting horribly over priced for wh
        • by twistedsymphony (956982) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:21AM (#16516609) Homepage
          I can understand why. and honestly I dont understand why directors and producers that propose a videogame movie are not beaten to death by the studios.... I dont care how good you are, Halo the movie??? I'd rather see Half Life the movie, and even then only if there is lots of crowbar action on headcrabs.
          While it's true that a lot of games just wouldn't make sense in the movie realm. The differences is in the script. In comic books characters are fleshed out, they have identities and personalities, and they have years of history with how the characters interact with each other. For a movie adaptation you can strip the story straight out of the pages, or if you write it fresh you have oodles and oodles of backstory and character traits that you can easily reference for inspiration. Not only does this keep the movie true to the comic's roots (which is important in any adaptation) but it also has the added benefit of keeping the fans happy in addition to giving the script a vast amount of depth and complexity with relatively little work on the writer's part (so long as he/she is familiar with the original work, or does their research).

          The problem is that NOT all video games have such a rich history. Games like Mario Bros and Doom in their infancy had a vague Shadow of a plot that was little more then a sorry excuse for why the pixels on the screen were dancing the way there were. Sure newer games have more of a script and are becoming more cinematic but even still the history isn't there, You might get 1 or 2 so-so game scripts to base your movie off of and that's if you're lucky. The rest of the movie's script and character design has to be invented by the writers, and to make it good enough to REALLY capture the feel of the game the writer has to do a whole lot more work to make it worth while for the audience.

          Halo is a little different though, not only doe it have 2 games with very SOLID scripts (and a 3rd with the script already written I'm sure) it also has a series of very well written novels as well as a comic book, all based in the same world. In addition it has a loyal fan base that keeps tabs on all the little nuances of the franchise, similar to what you find in other sci-fi fan bases the likes of Star Wars, Star Trek, or Battlestar Galactica.

          Halo has more then enough there to write a good movie script that will make a movie people want to watch. It's not the only game like this either, both Tomb Raider and Silent Hill have more backstory and well written game scripts then most games (though not nearly as good as what is available for Halo) and those were clearly far and wide better received films then other video game adaptations of games with little to no plot.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by soft_guy (534437)
        Long story short, Jackson would have to prove that a video game movie would appeal to a wide enough audience to justify comparing it to King Kong

        I thought King Kong was a video game movie [wikipedia.org].
    • Hell, they could have bought Youtube! What were they thinking?!
    • by Rik Sweeney (471717) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:26AM (#16515889) Homepage
      At .2 billion, I can't blame them.

      I can do better than that:

      At .0002 trillion, I can't blame them.
    • by Reverend528 (585549) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:38AM (#16516027) Homepage
      .2 billion

      Most of that budget was going towards film. After all, this was going to be the first movie shot entirely in slow motion.

    • by FofR (697088) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:41AM (#16516059)
      I should point out that the $200m mark is a rumor and Kamins, the representative for Peter Jackson and Fran stated: "The only budget the filmmakers ever spoke about was $145 million less the 12.5% rebate that you get from shooting in New Zealand, which would put it at about $128 million. That was the only number that was ever discussed."

      For more details I suggest heading to http://halomovie.trivialbeing.net/ [trivialbeing.net] where they have a video/news broadcast and some footage of Jackson's response.

      As an aside, they quote: "Microsoft is already in talks with other distribution partners and preparation for the movie will continue. Most of this development is at Peter Jackson's Weta effects studios in New Zealand, so delays should be small."
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Z1NG (953122)
        What I want to know is, where is "Minesweeper: The Movie". The story line in that game is phenomenal.
  • What huh? (Score:5, Funny)

    by iolaus (704845) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:14AM (#16515749) Homepage
    Did I read that right? Did the movie studios just make a good decision?
    • Fox and Universal, coming off a long season of shitty movies run by shitty directors, suddenly decide that it would be a bad idea to make a sci-fi epic with a potentially large cult audience, with the backing of one of the modern era's most successful names in fantasy epics... because they think the director's a newbie. Boy, smart move, there.

      • by DingerX (847589)
        Heh. You know, huge sci-fi films don't always make bank, and well, video game titles may give you success, but brand awareness in the vid field does not directly translate into box-office sales. Besides, Microsoft from the start has tried to "play" Hollywood with their Halo title. So maybe this is Hollywood's way of saying "You don't play a player".

        And what kinda spoiled rich kid gets a $200M budget as his first real job? And do you really think he would do a good job? I mean, look at the president of the
    • by Amiga Lover (708890) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:41AM (#16516063)
      > Did I read that right? Did the movie studios just make a good decision?

      They left out the most important bit of news - Fox and Universal have now gone to Uwe Boll to get the movie made.
      • by gstoddart (321705)
        They left out the most important bit of news - Fox and Universal have now gone to Uwe Boll to get the movie made.

        Careful, he might challenge you to a boxing match. I hear he throws a mean punch. :-P
    • by Dhalka226 (559740) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:02AM (#16516337)

      Did I read that right? Did the movie studios just make a good decision?

      Yes. Rest assured their lawyers are working diligently on who to sue so such a good decision never happens again.

  • Odd (Score:4, Interesting)

    by otacon (445694) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:15AM (#16515759)
    Seems like an odd choice considering Peter Jackson's track record with making money (LoTR, King Kong) and the popularity of Halo.
    • by Bandman (86149)
      I'd say the odd choice was for Jackson and Walsh to produce this.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by ProppaT (557551)
      Peter Jackson isn't behind it, he's "co-executive producer" which pretty much means he was like "Wow, I like Halo...awesome, let me attach my name to this movie." It's not like he's directing it or had anything to do with the screenplay.
      • Re:Odd (Score:5, Insightful)

        by EvilMonkeySlayer (826044) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:50AM (#16516159) Journal
        "Wow, I like money...awesome, let me attach my name to this movie."

        Fixed that for you.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Volante3192 (953645)
        If producers had nothing to do with the end product, though, mentioning the names Berman and Braga to trekkies would be inconsequential rather than invoke frothing at the mouth.
      • by oahazmatt (868057)
        Peter Jackson isn't behind it, he's "co-executive producer" which pretty much means he was like "Wow, I like Halo...awesome, let me attach my name to this movie." It's not like he's directing it or had anything to do with the screenplay.
        Good point. I learned not to trust Peter Jackson after I saw his name attached to the DVD for Cabin Fever.
    • by hellfire (86129) <(deviladv) (at) (gmail.com)> on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:38AM (#16516023) Homepage
      Peter Jackson's track record as a director is firmly established. However, as the submission said, he's not the director here. Slide Peter into the director's chair, and yes the equation does change.

      You have to understand, Hollywood's track record with movies based on game adaptations is not good. So when you say "I'm going to make a movie based on a game" you are already starting in a hole. To dig out of the hole, you have to get a great script, a strong proven director, and reasonably good cast.

      Then real hard part begins. You have to make sure the movie itself provides enough material to entertain fans of the game, stick to the over all idea of the original story, and then include enough quality to stand on a movie on it's own to draw in nonfans to make money. This is the hard part because while games don't typically require the same capital investment as movies (big name stars, directors, creative crew require much larger sums of money than your top notch game programmers).

      I'm not saying Neil is bad, but he's not got Peter's reputation. Writing a script that can do all this is hard, and the IMDB link says they've changed scriptwriters at least once. They haven't dug out of the hole, and Fox looks like it's not going to take the risk.

      If Peter looked like he had the same level of involvment in this project like he did in LotR, then this would be a great movie. It doesn't look like he does, and well he can't be perfect in all of his releases :) If it did come out bad, I'd rather it be axed now then damage his reputation later.
      • by garcia (6573)
        Then real hard part begins. You have to make sure the movie itself provides enough material to entertain fans of the game, stick to the over all idea of the original story, and then include enough quality to stand on a movie on it's own to draw in nonfans to make money. This is the hard part because while games don't typically require the same capital investment as movies (big name stars, directors, creative crew require much larger sums of money than your top notch game programmers).

        I would love to have so
  • by raffe (28595) * on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:17AM (#16515773) Journal
    I played doom before halo. Doom rocked it was...wait....movie???? Doom the movie sucked!
  • by Rik Sweeney (471717) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:18AM (#16515791) Homepage
    That film's going to be the most bloated Microsoft product yet!
    • by mgblst (80109)
      You don't think it costs more than that to produce Windows XP or Windows Vista?
  • "A ballooning budget (rumored to have been closing in on the $200 Mil mark) and apparent lack of confidence in rookie feature film director Neill Blomkamp are being named the major culprits for Fox and Universal's decision."

    Surely it's "...major factors behind Fox and Universal's decision"?
  • Good Move (Score:5, Funny)

    by vjmurphy (190266) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:20AM (#16515813) Homepage
    Spending 200 million on an untried director with a video-game property. Yep, I'd pull out quicker than you could say "Uwe Boll."
    • by ToxikFetus (925966) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:38AM (#16516025)
      Yep, I'd pull out quicker than you could say "Uwe Boll."
      ooo-weee? oh-weee? you-vee? oh crap....
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by SamSim (630795)
        I realise you're probably joking, but FYI it's pronounced "Oo-vah".
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Relyx (52619)
      Except we are talking Neil Blomkamp here.

      He's not exactly what I would call an "untried director." His background is in high-profile commercials, particularly ones featuring photoreal mecha such as the dancing Citroen transformer. His showreel [rokkit.tv] is very, very impressive (check out his documentary-style short film "Alive in Joburg".)
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by rk (6314) *

        Maybe they should get Marty DiBergi to direct. He was the one who made those commercials where the little dog chases the covered wagon under the sink.

        I think he made a documentary about some old heavy metal band, too.

  • by SethEaston (920552) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:20AM (#16515821)
    This movie was DOOMed from the begining!
  • Recipe For Failure (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Jekler (626699) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:21AM (#16515827)

    Trying to turn a game into a movie is destined to fail. Very few games are ever thought-out fully to the extent necessary for a complete story to be composed that will satisfy the masses. They're usually thought-out to the extent that a gamer in the mindset of "Whatever... what's next?" wants to comprehend.

    When you turn a game into a movie, the person watching isn't just waiting to get to the next level/area/mission, they might actually be interested in what's going on.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by cgenman (325138)
      The problem isn't that games lack intricate plot. The fact of the matter is that interesting story developments come unexpectedly, and unexpected behaviors have a habit of making games unpredictable and therefore unplayable. Likewise, the most gripping of plot elements revolve around tortured interpersonal decision making. Unfortunatley, not only can you not enforce those decisions on the player, most of those decisions are completely impossible to simulate on a d-pad.

      When working with games, you have to
  • by Rob T Firefly (844560) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:22AM (#16515833) Homepage Journal
    We've already got lots of little Halo movies [roosterteeth.com] which, I suspect, are far better than anything Hollywood could do with it.
  • just normal "business" in the movie industry...
  • by 9mm Censor (705379) * on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:22AM (#16515847) Homepage
    The budget is pretty much petty cash for MS. And entering the entertainment business means they can influence the business even more, towards MS online distribution (less iTunes, more M(S)P3s Online), and compete even more with Sony to push them out of the console market, to help the XBox360.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    No need to worry, everyone. This is Fox. I'm sure if enough of us buy the DVDs they'll realize their mistake and start making it again.
  • That sucks. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Skudd (770222) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:26AM (#16515893) Homepage Journal
    A lot of people would argue that turning a video game into a movie on the big screen isn't a good idea. I, however, feel as though the Halo storyline (at least from Halo #1) is adequate for a very impressive film.

    I was looking forward to the release of the movie, and actually had intention to see it in the theaters. I guess that's a far-fetched idea, now.
    • That would be assuming that the story-to-movie conversion was done with the same ambience, character personality, etc.

      As we all know from many many failed examples where the directors/whatever gutted or mutated the original work to fit their "vision", that barely ever happens. Just about the only "perfect" translation was Sin City. The rest are some few good efforts and a whole lot of terrible ones.

      When will the studios, producers, and directors learn to leave the original stories and characters alone? Seem
    • by Blakey Rat (99501)
      You might be interested in hearing that the fourth Halo book was recently released. And it's by Eric Nyland, the *good* author. (Sorry, but the novelization of the game SUCKED! The other two books were pretty good.)

      Anyway, I'm disappointed, too. After seeing them in the video game, and described in the books, I'd really like to see what a million dollar budget could do with an Elite, or Hunter or Ghost or Banshee with plasma blaring. Love or hate the Halo game, you gotta love the character and vehicle
  • Nonstarter (Score:5, Funny)

    by Shadow Wrought (586631) * <shadow,wrought&gmail,com> on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:30AM (#16515937) Homepage Journal
    Once they named Paris Hilton to play Cortana I knew the movie wouldn't make it.
  • Until I see a good video game based movie I would prefer they just leave Halo alone. The closest I have seen to a good video game movie was the original Mortal Combat and it wasnt exactly oscar material.
    • by mgblst (80109)
      Well come on, there is good movies, and then there is Oscar material. If you go and see a video game movie and expect Oscar material, then you will always be disappointed.

      Another point, as with all movies I go see these days, set your expectations low.
  • I find an ever increasing reduncancy between a videogame with hi-res state-of-the-art graphics, and a movie of such a game. There's a diminishing narrow gap between seeing such a movie, and the demo mode of the actual game. Let's see Peter Jackson work on something else, please.
  • by The-Bus (138060) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:38AM (#16516017)
    Was I the only one who was thoroughly impressed with Mr. Blomkamp's short film Alive in Joburg [google.com]? I thought it was a nice mix of sci-fi and realism and would love to see more movies blending that style.

    Now, a budget of $200 million is a lot for any movie. Jackson's King Kong barely broke even, so he doesn't exactly have a perfect track record.

    But, let's use some crazy gorilla math. Alive in Joburg is about 6 minutes long. Make it 90 or 120 minutes long, and you've got twenty times the budget. (Mind you, I'm using crazy gorilla math). I don't think that short film cost $10 million. Hell, I doubt it even cost $200,000. I think if they worked on a budget first (say, $75 million), and then worked backwards from there, they can still have a great product.

    Just don't make the movie three hours long. Please.
    • "Broke Even", eh? (Score:4, Informative)

      by MrChom (609572) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:49AM (#16516153) Homepage
      King Kong did not "barely break even", it's the 36th highest grossing film of all time with nearly $400m of profit to its name. The only way it could have been classed as break even is if you looked at US gross only without DVD sales.
      • "King Kong did not "barely break even", it's the 36th highest grossing film of all time with nearly $400m of profit to its name."

        Are you sure of your numbers? King Kong's domestic take was $218 million, and typically only half of that ends up in the studio's hands -- theatres and distributors taking the rest. Additionally, King Kong's $208 million production budget doesn't include its marketing budget, which was probably in the area of $50 million. In other words, they were $150 million in the hole with the
      • King Kong did not "barely break even", it's the 36th highest grossing film of all time with nearly $400m of profit to its name.

        King Kong had a budget of just over $200m, and at the start of October had a worldwide gross of about $550m. That means if the studios got every dime of that $550m there would only be a $350m profit. When you take into account all the other people who get a piece of the pie, that $350m will shrink very quickly. So unless there was a MASSIVE number of DVDs bought in the last few week
    • by mgblst (80109)
      Just watched it, it is a great film.

      Short films have many advantages over feature films. They don't have to keep the viewer entertained as long, the plot is simple if it exists at all, character development isn't important, you can get away with dodgy scenes.

      Still, I am interested if he can escape from the usual hollywood crap.
  • by the_last_tmnt (1014855) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:40AM (#16516053)
    Meanwhile, talks with Miramax still continue on the upcoming Office 2003 movie adaptation.
  • by stevedcc (1000313) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:41AM (#16516067)
    Ok, so I know he isn't published in the USA, but Halo was at least partly inspired (http://marathon.bungie.org/Story/halo_culture.htm l [bungie.org]) by an Iain M Banks book, http://www.amazon.co.uk/Consider-Phlebas-Iain-Bank s/dp/1857231384 [amazon.co.uk]). I think this means that comparison's with films like DOOM is kind of unfair. Btw, Iain M Banks is one of the best sci fi authors alive. If you don't believe me, read it. An awesome book. Steve Crawford
  • by tygerstripes (832644) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:50AM (#16516155)
    Why don't they trust Peter Jackson to make this work? I mean, LotR wasn't a great game, but what a movie he made out of it!

    I've heard talk of book-adaptations, but that's just par for the course.

  • Well, it's about time that somebody wakes up and realizes that the storyline of a video game is too thin to be attempting to base a feature length presentation on it. Perhaps the first Half-Life could be reasonable adapted, but that game was more about the story than the game in the first place.
    • Yeah, well if you choose FPS games all the time, then of course the plotline will be pants.

      I'm just waiting for that intrepid investor to finance a feature film on games like PacMan, Nethack, Tetris, or Minesweeper. Imagine the nuance of emotion and storylines that can be pulled from such a project...

  • I'd rather see Halo as an Anime series.
  • I am guessing that Larry Niven's lawyers finally contacted them...If you have read the Ringworld books by Niven, and the other Known Space books, then played the games, you will see there is enough similarities between Halo/Halo 2 that it would make investors twitchy.

    ttyl
              Farrell
  • by thedbp (443047) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:00AM (#16516309)
    I don't understand how they could have done this.

    Now the world will be deprived of another in a long line of well-acted, brilliantly-written, and plot-heavy movies based on video games. After Doom and Super Mario Brothers, I thought it was obvious that all the major advancements in cinema were being made in films that exist as a footnote to a video game franchise.

    THe world is now deprived of the incredibly complex artistic vision that would have been a movie based on a first-person shooter. Just think of all the philosophical and political discussions this movie could have motivated if it had come to fruition.

    I, for one, am saddened and disheartened by this stunning loss to western culture.
  • Final Fantasy VII - Advent Children
    Final Fantasy - The Spirits Within
    Final Fantasy X-2
    Doom
    Doom 3
    Bloodrayne
    BloodRayne 2
    Resident Evil (Special Edition) / Resident Evil - Apocalypse
    Resident Evil 4
    Alone in the Dark
    Full (?) list here... [amazon.com]

    ...is TRON really supposed to be on that list?

    Actually, the movie was stopped because MS wanted internet dist. rights and the rest of the group had already made a deal w/iTMS :)
  • I think a movie based on the Scarface video game would be a killer film (excuse the pun). They should show what leads up to the begining of the game and have Tony die in the final fight.

    Atari's old ET game would also kick ass. Where's my funding?
  • by tb3 (313150) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:03AM (#16517289) Homepage
    Go to the Halo FAQ page [bungie.net] and scroll down to the question:
    I read there is going to be a big-budget Hollywood movie of Halo starring Vin Diesel as the Master Chief and a porn star as the voice of Cortana. When should I start lining up outside my local theater?

    And here's their answer:
    You shouldn't. Lots of people have come around trying to get the rights to make a Halo movie, but Bungie has not sold the movie rights to anyone. (And yes, it IS Bungie's decision.) There are lots of bad movies based on video games, and we don't want Halo to meet the same fate.


    Obviously, Microsoft greed trumps Bungie integrity.

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