Back in June Gore Verbinski said that he was unsure if he could still direct Bioshock as he could not commit to the lengthy overseas filming. Universal wanted to take advantage of overseas tax breaks in an effort to trim down the budget, which apparently spiralled to $160 million. Well now according to Variety Verbinski has stepped down as director, however he will still produce, and a new director is in talks to direct the game adaptation.
“28 Weeks Later” helmer Juan Carlos Fresnadillo is in talks to direct “Bioshock,” the Universal Pictures adaptation of the Take-Two Interactive videogame.
Fresnadillo directed the 2001 Spanish thriller “Intacto,” and made his Hollywood breakthrough with “28 Weeks Later.”
With “Bioshock,” Fresnadillo is stepping into one of the highest-profile projects on the Universal roster. Verbinski came attached as director when Universal made a multimillion- dollar against gross percentage acquisition from Take-Two. Verbinski then stepped away from directing his fourth “Pirates of the Caribbean” film because he expected to be in production on “Bioshock” last spring in Los Angeles.
Once it was clear Verbinski wouldn’t direct, he and the studio sparked to Fresnadillo, whose deal is contingent upon the thumbs-up from Take-Two, which maintains director approval. Fresnadillo’s producing partner, Enrique Lopez Lavigne, is in talks to become a producer.
Both 28 Weeks Later and Intacto have just over 70% on Rotten Tomatoes which suggests Juan Carlos Fresnadillo is a capable director, and Universal will need one. Bioshock takes place in an alternate 1960, and in the game the player takes the role of a plane crash survivor named Jack, who must explore the underwater city of Rapture, and survive attacks by the mutated beings and mechanical drones that populate it.