It’s no secret that Hollywood likes to try and adapt all kinds of media into movies. Most of the time they prefer novels, but a studio executive will try and adapt anything if they think it’ll make money. Even though most attempts have failed, they’re still trying to adapt video games. For a while it looked like Neil Blompkamp would be directing a Peter Jackson-produced Halo, and there were rumblings of other major video games being adapted.
One of the biggest of those games was Bioshock, which is one of the finest video games ever made. At one point, Gore Verbinksi was attached to direct the film version, and it had even secured a budget of over $200 million. But for some reason, the film just seemed to stop production.
Ken Levine, the creator of Bioshock, recently mentioned why he thought that the project didn’t ultimately go anywhere.
“What happened was — this is my theory — it’s a very big movie and Gore was very excited about it and he wanted to make a very dark, what he would call a ‘hard-rated’ horror film — an R-rated film with a lot of blood. Then Watchmen came out — and I really liked Watchmen — but it didn’t do well for whatever reason and the studio got cold feet about making an R-rated $200 million film.”
It’s actually not that hard to see his point. Watchmen, while an overall respected film adaptation, was not truly a financial success, and that’s really all studios care about. Their bottom line will always be money.
After Verbinski left the film, Levine wasn’t able to find another director that he felt would do the project justice, and he ended up ‘killing’ the project. I have to say that I’m glad he did so. Bioshock is one of my favorite games and I don’t think that anyone could adapt it into a PG-13 film. Doing so would absolutely disembowel it.
Besides, we don’t need a movie version of Bioshock. We already have the game, and that’s more than enough for me.