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How do you turn a viral video short about 8-bit video game characters running amok in New York City into a feature-length movie? That remains to be seen, but at least we're getting a look at the team who'll have to save the day with this first look at the cast of Pixels in costume.
My first thought looking at this shot of Michelle Monaghan, Adam Sandler, Josh Gad and Peter Dinklage is WHAT have they done to Peter Dinklage? The dapper chap who won our hearts with The Station Agent, who became an idol (and sex symbol) to fanboys and fangirls worldwide as Tyrion on Game of Thrones, who brought terror in the form of Sentinels in X-Men: Days of Future Past is sporting a hair cut and beard combo that can only rightly be described as Dog The Bounty Hunter Chic. Woof.
EW presents this first look along with the most thorough plot description we've gotten yet for Pixels. Since Sandler bought the rights to the short film "Pixels," we've been wondering how his team might translate it into a flashy family-comedy. As it turns out, the script by Adam Sandler, Patrick Jean, Tim Herlihy and Timothy Dowling reaches back to 1982 for its inspiration and first act.
In Pixels aliens pick up satellite feeds of old school arcade games like Space Invaders and Centipede and mistake them as a declaration of war. Skip to today, where the aliens have reached Earth and use the 8-bit characters and strategies from these very games to attack the planet. What's the President of the United States (Kevin James) to do? Well, apparently call on his old arcade buddies (Sandler, Gad and Dinklage), uniting them to take on the video game-inspired baddies that they regularly defeated as kids.
Director Chris Columbus describes the central trio as "three losers." Adam Sandler's is a TV mechanic (perhaps an allusion to the short where a broken TV releases the 8-bit terrorists). Josh Gad has grown to be a conspiracy theorist, and Peter Dinklage is described as "a felon." (Who else wears fingerless gloves?) Completing the quartet assigned with taking on these out-of-this-world antagonists is Michelle Monaghan as a hi-tech weapons expert.
In the still up top, the three guys wear their "suits," which read "Arcaders." Columbus explains, "They’re actually becoming sort of cultural heroes at this point. It’s a very important shot in the film." Speaking to Dinklage's unfortunate hair style here, Columbus says, "We thought, ‘Someone has to sport the mullet in the movie,'…His character has been in prison. He’s the only one who’s still trapped in the eighties a bit."
Columbus cited some other '80s inspirations for Pixels, explaining, "It’s a little bit of an homage to Ghostbusters and all those great Amblin movies of the eighties—not only the movies that I was involved in like The Goonies and Gremlins—but the movies I loved when I was working there like Back to the Future."
Pixels will open May 15th, 2015.
To see the short that inspired Pixels, click to the next page