‘BioShock’ Movie Dead in the Water?

Posted Tuesday, November 15th, 2011 07:00 pm GMT -4 by

BioShock Video Game coverIn the continuing on-again, off-again saga of a ‘BioShock’ movie being made, it looks like it is now on pause. According to Industry Gamers, creative director of Irrational Games, Ken Levine, has said a ‘BioShock’ movie “doesn’t need to get made.”

For those not familiar with the game’s development history (or lack thereof), in 2008 Universal  signed a deal with the game’s publisher, Take-Two Interactive, to bring ‘BioShock’ to the big screen and had signed ‘Pirates of the Carribean’ director Gore Verbinski to direct. A couple years later, the film was still in development as Verbinski was dealing with the movie’s budget and trying to figure out how to keep production costs down while still maintaining the game’s integrity. Then word had it that Verbinski was out as director and that ’28 Days Later’ director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo would be taking his place. Verbinski, however would still be a producer. Early last year, Verbinski told Coming Soon the reason why the movie has yet to be made:

“I couldn’t really get past anybody that would spend the money that it would take to do it and keep an R rating.  Alternately, I wasn’t really interested in pursuing a PG-13 version. Because the R rating is inherent.. I just wanted to really, really make it a movie where, four days later, you’re still shivering
and going, “Jesus Christ!”… It’s a movie that has to be really, really scary, but you also have to create a whole underwater world, so the price tag is high. We just didn’t have any takers on an R-rated movie with that price tag.”

Apparently at the time, the proposed budget to make ‘BioShock’ had risen to $160million and Universal was balking at the price tag. Now Levine has pretty much given the final word about the movie’s progress and it doesn’t look good:Ken Levine

“We got very close to having it get made – we had a deal in place and a director. But for us there’s no burning [desire] to have a movie made just to get it made. For us and for Take-Two, it’s really got to be something that will a) give the fans something that they want, and b) for those who don’t know BioShock, really introduce them to something that is consistent with the game, and is going to be a good representation of the game.”

For those not familiar with the game ‘Bioshock’, it takes place in an alternate universe set in the year 1960 where the player takes on the role of Jack, a survivor who explores the underwater city of Rapture and has to survive attacks by mutation and mechanical drones that populate it. The game carries a lot of plot twists and a morality based storyline making this a fan favorite. A sequel to the game, ‘BioShock Infinite’ is set to be released next year.

The fact that Levine wants to make sure the movie is done properly is good news for Bioshock gamers as that means a movie version of the game won’t be bastardized as other movies based on games have been. Levine added, “There are differences between games and movies, no doubt, but the movie has to draw from the same DNA in terms of the world and the story beats.” And as a final word, Levine stated, “But you know, we don’t have a need to get it made.”

  • http://www.hydeandgeek.com Scott

    Dear Hollywood, would you kindly just leave Bioshock alone. It’s better as a game.