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Comic-Con 2011: Mass Effect movie hopes to prove that videogames can be valid source for film

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Although the upcoming Mass Effect movie is in the very early stages of production, Casey Hudson, creator of the series, and Mark Protosevich, screenwriter, were on hand during today’s Legendary Pictures panel to discuss their desire to create a videogame adaptation worth watching.

Jon Jashni, Chief Creative Officer of Legendary Pictures, started the panel by acknowledging the disappointing transition many games have made onto the big screen and stressed that including the creators in the creation of the film would be one of the ways to prevent that.

Protosevich, who previously worked on Thor and I Am Legend, suggested that the seduction of visuals and gameplay tend to make the movie industry believe the best method of translation is to copy it directly to screen without asking necessary questions about whether that game has a good story or solid themes. And, while most games would “fail that litmus test” he stressed that Mass Effect does not. He revealed that currently they’re only focusing on the first game for the movie for now.

Hudson stated that a Mass Effect movie had been in talks since 2006, even before the first game had been released, and that several companies had approached him. However, it was Legendary Pictures’ (Inception, The Dark Knight) track record of releasing movies that are “true to subject matter” and “great” that sparked the partnership.

Jul 22, 2011

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25 comments

  • hunter565 - July 28, 2011 3:14 a.m.

    I think the director from Star Trek should make this mvie because the game is a high level time scifi, from shepherd to the krogen and other creatures. It would have to be some one with scifi type movie experince.
  • lost_samurai - July 27, 2011 4:18 p.m.

    id find it kind of interesting myself if the did a movie on the first contact war against the turians would be pretty epic dont you think?
  • Deinsleaf - July 26, 2011 12:50 a.m.

    Videogames are a valid source for a film. It's just that the directors or actors aren't up for the challenge of recreating a videogame in movie form.
  • TopNewt - July 25, 2011 3:25 a.m.

    Mass Effect Is good as it is as a game, it is really unnecessary to turn it into a movie.
  • jackthemenace - July 24, 2011 5:27 p.m.

    @Bron1417- As a Mass Effect fan, I hope this film gets scrapped. With teh track record of Video game movies up till now, I'd much rather the film was put off until such a time that Producers had PROVED they could make a good video-game movie. Maybe experiment with some of the worse games first, and work their way up to the big guns. A bad Mass Effect movie wouldn't ruin the franchise, but it'd forever do to it what Face's of Evil did to tLoZ.
  • ConVito - July 23, 2011 5:32 p.m.

    Keep a good chunk of the ME staff involved with the picture, Bring in as many actors from the games as possible (Seth Green, Keith [or is it Kieth?] David, etc.), and for the love of all that is good, keep David O'Russell away from it. Don't want Mass Effect to become a family film about a ragtag group of spunky marines who go around solving space mysteries.
  • Plan10FromOuterSpace - July 23, 2011 3:33 p.m.

    The fact this studio have previously made The Dark Knight and Inception is slightly re-assuring and I really hope they do this game justice.
  • FatDarkPlace - July 23, 2011 2:29 p.m.

    So far, we are all hoping for a good ME movie. I hope it does exceed expectations.
  • Clovin64 - July 23, 2011 12:33 p.m.

    As long as ME's writers are closely involved with the script and story, this might actually be good.
  • NotBraze - July 23, 2011 4:51 a.m.

    @Kingsman, that was my reaction as well. I had heard that they were planning on telling a completely new story set in the same universe rather than telling the story of the Mass Effect trilogy for the reasons you described. Fans were speculating First Contact Wars as the setting, and I personally thought that would be brilliant, but if they carry through with a direct adaptation of the first game, I'll be very disappointed.
  • Errrrbo - July 23, 2011 4:22 a.m.

    You know what I think? Videogames need to stop trying to play in films' backyard. We are the biggest branch of the entertainment industry, we don't need to try be relevant to film. Games have their own form of storytelling than an uninteractive medium can't replicate without fundamentally breaking it apart. Mass Effect is my favorite game of all time, but this film doesn't interest me at all.
  • xXxsilentassassinxXx - July 23, 2011 3:29 a.m.

    Edit: "not a retelling of Shepherd's story"
  • xXxsilentassassinxXx - July 23, 2011 3:28 a.m.

    I just hope that it's not retelling of Shepherd's story, but rather a completely original story that ties into the first game. It would be pointless to tell a story we've already seen.
  • rabidpotatochip - July 23, 2011 1:53 a.m.

    @Vitreosity - Yeah, you're probably right; it makes more sense than a solution no one's happy with. hehe And if that's the case, Ashley Williams would be the name of the love interest.
  • ArbokDaKobra - July 23, 2011 12:45 a.m.

    I think it has the possibility to skyrocket my favorite gaming franchise into a much broader spotlight. Which can be both good, and bad. If they stick to the game's plot, they can't go wrong. If they think they can deviate from it, the movie will suffer. BTW does anybody know for sure if its live action or anime, yet? I've heard reports of both.
  • Kingsman - July 23, 2011 12:44 a.m.

    I gotta say, I am not thrilled about this. Mass Effect is really about defining your own morality, and making decisions that won't be popular with everyone. Up until this point, they've kept a very tight leash on the expanded universe in terms of not making assumptions about what the player has done (i.e. your decisions are canon, even the 'evil' decisions). If the movie follows the video game story, it will lose some of its impact a bit.
  • Vitreosity - July 23, 2011 12:32 a.m.

    @rabidpotatochip Seeing as most advertisements show Male Shepard, I have a feeling they'll stick with him. I'm wondering which romance they'll introduce, seeing as this is the first game. I have a feeling they'll go with the human (Can't remember the name right now).
  • rabidpotatochip - July 23, 2011 12:04 a.m.

    As long as they don't make some kind of transgender Shepherd as a compromise between the male Shepherd/female Shepherd camps I'd go watch this.
  • Markoose16 - July 22, 2011 11:38 p.m.

    I think they should give up with trying to make games into films and go with the far more logical idea of making them into a TV series. Why does the industry think "20-30 hour game, make 2 hour film" and not "20-30 hour game, make into 10 hour TV series"? There's less money to be made and spent but a lot more critical acclaim and a broader audience.
  • MyCoolWhiteLies - July 22, 2011 11:38 p.m.

    It's good to see them addressing these common issues. Now they just really need to work on getting it actually into production, rather then letting it die in pre-production hell like Halo, Bioshock, and probably Uncharted.

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