Earlier this week the first trailer was released for Dead Island, a zombie video game which has been in development for a number of years. The trailer was a hit and quickly went viral, creating buzz and generating speculation that a movie was in the works.
In the trailer (which is embedded below) we see a young girl laying on the ground, who is then transported via rewind mode to into the air and through a hotel window where she proceeds to take a chunk out of a guys neck. Throughout the rest of the trailer and rewinding scenes we get flashbacks from a few moments before, and discover that the girl was actually being chased by zombies. Despite attempts by her mother and father to save her she becomes zombiefied and turns on her father (the neck guy), before being thrown out of the hotel window.
It’s a very cool trailer for a zombie game and has been praised for being “well-edited and emotionally engaging”, but the reality is none of what we see in the trailer will be in the game itself. Dead Island, which allows players to play four characters who wake up on a resort island during a zombie outbreak, could quite possibly end up just like other zombie games where you mindlessly shoot, hack and slash incoming zombies. Despite this the buzz has earned it a lot of attention, and wherever there’s buzz, there’s a movie studio.
Variety claims that The Wolfman producer Sean Daniel has brought the rights to the movie and “has started searching for a writer and is currently in discussions with studios and film financiers.” Deadline also reports that “studios and agencies are all over them, suggesting talent packages and story lines to try and make a screen deal. That will likely happen in the next week or so. The film will follow a Memento-like storyline, even though the video game does not.”
However, game publisher Deep Silver today issued a press release stating that no movie rights have been sold…yet.
“Deep Silver has received a massive amount of interest in the film adaptation rights to the Dead Island IP. Contrary to rumors that have been circulating, neither the film rights nor any other licenses have yet been sold by Deep Silver, which is the sole IP holder of the Dead Island brand.
‘We are looking for quality above all else for a movie based on Dead Island. We want to do it the right way as film realizations of games (or vice versa) usually fail to deliver what the fans were looking for. We will not go down this route with Dead Island. Deep Silver profoundly believes in the quality and value of its Dead Island IP,’ says Klemens Kundratitz, CEO of Deep Silver’s parent company Koch Media. ‘We would therefore be honored to work with someone who already has a proven track record with blockbuster movies.'”
Props to Deep Silver for acknowledging that game-to-movie adaptations usually suck. They could have easily just sold the rights to the highest bidder during the mayhem.
I’m sure whoever thought of the idea for the trailer will be getting a raise, and knowing Hollywood he’ll probably end up directing.