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The making of movies based on video games has continued to be a difficult thing to do well. However, it turns out that one of the developers behind some of the biggest titles in gaming has begun to test the waters of bringing their games to the big screen. Take-Two Interactive is the developer behind such titles as Grand Theft Auto, Bioshock, and Red Dead Redemption and while the company says that they aren't looking at getting deeply involved in making movies, they're open to seeing their titles become films. There are even a couple titles that are already being considered according to the CEO.
We have licensed a couple of titles for motion picture production and we don't have much more to say about that yet. We are open-minded. We are certainly not going to use our own balance sheet to invest in motion pictures and TV. If other people want to license them and we can retain creative control, we are open-minded. The track record of the conversion of video game IP to motion pictures is spotty at best.
Calling the success of video game IPs as films "spotty" may be the understatement of the year. Thus far, literally none of them have been critically embraced and only a couple can even be called a financial success. Since Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick tells MCV that the company isn't looking to invest any of the company's money into making movies, seeing a box office success that's a critical failure would probably be a net loss for the company from a brand perspective. They'd probably be much happier with a better movie, even if it didn't make quite as much money.
Still, he says that the company is open to working with studios if they have creative control over their properties. Certainly, this would seem like a good move. One of the problems that many film adaptations tend to have is that they stray pretty far away from their source material. Take-Two taking an active role would seemingly help to make sure that didn't happen.
We're certainly wondering which couple of titles have currently been licensed out to studios already. There was talk a few years ago about a Bioshock movie, but eventually, that movie was put on the shelf. Depending on how the deal worked, it's possible that Sony still has the rights and could be trying to revive that property. More recently there has been talk of a Borderlands movie which is very likely one of the titles that Strauss Zelnick is talking about here. While that game is a first person shooter, like so many other titles, Borderlands does have one thing that sets it apart from a lot of games, humor, which might make it a stronger contender as a movie.
We'll certainly be keeping our eyes open for news on any future films based on Take-Two games. Which ones would you like to see become movies? Let us know in the comments below.