Throughout the years there have been quite a few video game adaptations to film. It’s likely you’d be able to name a few: Need for Speed (2014), Doom (2005), Super Mario Bros (1993), Final Fantasy VII Advent children (2005/2009) and the most recent Warcraft (2016) come to my mind, but naturally this list continues.
The vast majority of all of these types of film share one thing in common; they are almost always seen as a critical flop and some are even hated by fans of the game. Crossing the medium from game to film seems to ruin the essence of a game. Whether this is because the full immersion of the game is lost in cinema, or whether it’s the fact that the game is able to invest so much more time in telling the story and developing the character than any film ever could.
Regardless of the reason, as soon as we hear ‘film adaptation’ be placed next to a bestselling game, you can’t help but hold your breath. Especially if that game is as critically acclaimed as the Playstation 3 hit, The Last of Us.
It has been a while since we got this news of the adaptation, and after that time you’d have thought more information would have been released on it. Yet at a recent press event for the film, Don’t Breath, producer Sam Raimi explained why this wasn’t the case.
He said: “Well, unfortunately that one [The last of us]– when we went to Neil with Ghost House Pictures we were hoping to get the rights like we do any project and then we’d take it out and sell it but we’d control the rights. With this one he went to Sony — who I have a very good relationship with — but they have their own plans for it and I think Neil’s plan for it… is not the same as Sony’s.”
Raimi did later confirm that even with this rights battle he will still be attached to the film as an executive producer: “Yes, I’m attached to it.” Raimi explained, “I’m not too sure what that means. Right now it’s just sitting there. They don’t want to move forward, and it’s not my place to say why.”
It seems that The Last of Us has fallen into the cliché development pit that so many before it have never been able to climb out if. I hope that it is made, since if it has a mere fraction of the film’s style and experience, it will be a very good film indeed. Yet there is always that part of us that shouldn’t thing too highly of it, given what happened to those before it.