Talk of a Halo movie has been rattling around the web since time immemorial. Assorted directors, studios and actors have been rumoured, confirmed, denied, etc. but now the project has finally collapsed. Wired have printed excerpts from a new book by Jamie Russell, “Generation Xbox: How Video Games Invaded Hollywood” which talks about jusdt why the film tanked.
The deal was being handled for Microsoft by Larry Shapiro of Creative Artist’s Agency. He spoke out about the project, saying that “Microsoft’s unwillingness to reduce their deal killed the deal. Their unwillingness to reduce their gross in the deal meant it got too top-heavy.”
Neill Blomkamp of District 9 fame was set to direct and agreed with Shapiro. “When you have a corporation [Microsoft] that potent and that large taking a percentage of the profits, then you’ve got Peter Jackson taking a percentage of the profits and you start adding all of that stuff up, mixed with the fact that you have two studios sharing the profits, suddenly the return on the investment starts to decline so that it becomes not worth making. Ultimately, that’s essentially what killed the film.”
Blomkamp also spoke of disagreements between studios and creative talent. “The suits weren’t happy with the direction I was going. Thing was, though, I’d played Halo and I play videogames. I’m that generation more than they are and I know that my version of Halo would have been insanely cool.”
While a Halo film has the potential to be an epic, game-to-film conversions have always been a tricky prospect. We’ve all seen the Super Mario Bros movie and wept, I’m sure. It’s a shame that Halo won’t be receiving the lavish, cinematic treatment that it deserves. What it is not, is a surprise.