Details of the scrapped Grand Theft Auto film unearthed

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GTA liberty city.JPGMovies based on games are invariably bad. Resident Evil, Mortal Combat; both naff. Don’t even get me started on the Chun-Li movie, though I do have a silly soft spot for the Bob Hoskins-fronted Mario Bros. film.

One game that could make a very slick console-to-silver-screen transition however would be the Grand Theft Auto games. They drew heavily from mob flicks like The Godfather and Goodfellas, evolving into cinematic masterpieces in their own right come the release of GTA IV.

And, from the sounds of things, a GTA movie very nearly happened. In an interview with Game Culture, Mark Neveldine, the writer and director of recent video game-influenced flick “Gamer” was approached to get a GTA film off the ground.

“We actually were going to be hired to write GTA,” revealed Neveldine “That was after we wrote and directed Crank, so I got involved with GTA pretty heavily, I didn’t grow up with it. I came back and dove in…like when you don’t watch TV for three weeks, then when you do you watch it for 24 hours straight. I was playing GTA from the first game to the latest edition all the way through.”

But complications concerning Ron Howard’s 1977 directorial debut “Grand Theft Auto” brought the project to a halt.

“There is a rights issue. It was a movie originally directed by Ron Howard. And because RockStar games made a videogame, there is some battle of who can use the title. You can’t make it about the game. It got to be a headache and we said we would rather not get involved in it. I think someone ended up writing some version of it to re-make the movie, but that isn’t our interest, ours was bringing a videogame to life.”

So close yet so far. Still, while the high-octane tone of the earlier GTA games may suit the style of a director responsible for the ludicrous Crank, perhaps it’s a good thing Neveldine didn’t get his hands on the GTA franchise considering its now more mature direction.

If we lived in a world where any wish could be granted and a GTA film went into production, who’d fill your director’s seat? Who’d be your Niko? Liberty City, Vice City or San Andreas? Let us know!

Via: Game Culture

Gerald Lynch
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One thought on “Details of the scrapped Grand Theft Auto film unearthed

  • Scorsese or Paul Thomas Anderson. Maybe both Co- Directing! Should start with Vice City, it’s where the popularity came from. But who could play Tommy? I’m sure Scorsese would arrange something. šŸ˜€

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