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Mass Effect To Invade the Big Screen 142

Posted by Soulskill
from the seth-green-seems-like-a-lock dept.
UgLyPuNk writes "This could be a good thing or a bad thing: EA has just confirmed that it's making Mass Effect into a movie. The franchise has been acquired by Legendary Pictures, which is best known for its co-productions of The Dark Knight, Clash of the Titans, 300, Watchmen, and, um, The Hangover, as part of a co-financing agreement with Warner Bros."
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Mass Effect To Invade the Big Screen

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  • Jack Shephard lives!

  • by tingeber (1129619) on Thursday May 27, 2010 @02:23AM (#32358896)
    Maybe we'll get Zach Galifianakis as Shepherd.
    • by XiaoMing (1574363)

      Hahaha he should totally do the voice. But I'd go with Channing Tatum for the lead.

      • Hahaha he should totally do the voice. But I'd go with Channing Tatum for the lead.

        That would be nice. Then I'd have an excuse to skip the movie. Seriously, that dude makes Keanu look like Marlon Brando.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      But Shephard is a woman!
      • This is a very legitimate point. I don't know how they're going to avoid letting down all of the people that made their OWN version of Shepard, from his/her look & sex, to all the myriad of decisions made throughout the game. They're basically going to pick one story out of thousands that have been created by the players and say "This is the right one". I love the game, and thought I'd love to see it as a movie, but this is just going to piss a lot of people off.
  • by atheistmonk (1268392) on Thursday May 27, 2010 @02:24AM (#32358906) Homepage
    I'm in the middle of some calibrations.
    • You sure? We could talk a bit about reach and flexibility...

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by atheistmonk (1268392)
      Seriously, though. Reading TFA (I know I know) it is somewhat comforting to know that Bioware dudes are going to be involved. I'd prefer to know if their writers were in on it, though. Hell, Mass Effect blew my mind with its cinematic integrity. Will it get the Hollywood treatment and everything we know and love about it is raped and murdered before our eyes? Yeah, probably. But who knows, 300 and Watchmen were pretty faithful adaptations and maybe we won't have Johnny Fucking Depp or Robert Downey Jr play
      • Re:Can it wait? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Rogerborg (306625) on Thursday May 27, 2010 @04:11AM (#32359390) Homepage

        Bioware dudes are going to be involved

        And if they're really quiet and well behaved, they may even be allowed to stay on set and fetch coffee for the guy who walks the dog of the broad who puts the makeup on Johnny Fucking Depp.

      • Re:Can it wait? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by shadowknot (853491) * on Thursday May 27, 2010 @04:14AM (#32359400) Journal
        I agree and, of course, the really good news is that Uwe f*cking Boll isn't involved.
        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by gwslyon (1678876)

          I agree and, of course, the really good news is that U** fucking B*** isn't involved.

          Fixed that for ya.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Homburg (213427)

        Watchmen was such a faithful adaptation of the comic that it was unwatchable as a film; this kind of mechanical "faithfulness" to the appearance or minor details of the source material is rarely a good thing. A similarly faithful film of Mass Effect would presumably keep interrupting the plot for a quick tour of the 15th more-or-less identical mining station or military outpost.

        • by rant64 (1148751)
          The Mass Effect universe is so big, the movie does not have to replicate every element in the game to be faithful. The universe may even be suited to make it an Umptilogy, progressing storylines of several species throughout the universe. Like LOTR, but less boring.
          • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

            by zill (1690130)

            Umptilogy

            It's as if millions of grammar nazis suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by Von Helmet (727753)

          Watchmen was such a faithful adaptation of the comic that it was unwatchable as a film

          One of the main aims in producing Watchmen, the comic, was to show what a comic can do that a film can't. So they went ahead and made the film, it didn't work terribly well, and the circle is complete.

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by L4t3r4lu5 (1216702)
            They didn't make a film of The Watchmen; They made the Watchmen comic book move.

            The only adaptation was the ending, presumably because explaining Barbastus to the peons who think Die Hard 4.0 is technically accurate [penny-arcade.com] would leave most cinema goers with a sore head. The rest was, scene for scene, the comic book main story.
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by BForrester (946915)

          A similarly faithful film of Mass Effect would presumably keep interrupting the plot for a quick tour of the 15th more-or-less identical mining station or military outpost.

          Not to mention a four-minute elevator ride every time the scene changes.

        • by lymond01 (314120)

          Watchmen was interesting in its time and was likely the harbinger of bringing reality to comic book characters. But by the time the movie was released, most mainstream heroes, at least in the Marvel universe, had been given flaws and deeper personalities. The art direction in the Watchmen was cool but I think what made the book interesting in the 80s doesn't hold up in modern times. Still a good movie for me though.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by PanzStrata (1768658)

          Watchmen was such a faithful adaptation of the comic that it was unwatchable as a film

          One thing that Watchmen taught me about adaptations is you can never please everyone. You will either get castrated for getting too far off path from the original or you will get burned alive because you had no originality.

          I never go into a movie comparing it to the original, you will never win because the entire time you will be critiquing and not enjoying. I have know doubt that a good number of people will be very vocal about how much they thought the Mass Effect movie sucked (when it comes out), but n

        • by Z8 (1602647)

          Watchmen was such a faithful adaptation of the comic that it was unwatchable as a film

          That's certainly a matter of opinion. I really liked the film and most of my friends did also.

        • by 0xABADC0DA (867955)

          It should be shown with 24-style action panels simultaneously showing what Paragon Shepard and Renegade Shepard do at each conversation. Also sometimes the panels should show male Shepard and other times female Shepard.

          Also if you watch the DVD a second time it should skip some scenes because you already started with Paragon left over from the last viewing.

        • Watchmen was such a faithful adaptation of the comic that it was unwatchable as a film

          And yet, interestingly, I wasn't particularly aware of or into the graphic novel previously, thought the film was terrific, and now like the book too. I know I'm not alone in that experience, either.

          Hell, the movie was worth it just for the opening credits.

      • maybe we won't have Johnny Fucking Depp or Robert Downey Jr playing Commander Shepard.

        That is of course assuming they choose a male for the lead. It seems a little difficult because some of us may have associated Shepard with a female character. Others may have chosen a male. It's tough when you have characters that aren't clearly defined in the game, especially customizable ones.

        • That is of course assuming they choose a male for the lead. It seems a little difficult because some of us may have associated Shepard with a female character. Others may have chosen a male. It's tough when you have characters that aren't clearly defined in the game, especially customizable ones.

          That is, of course, assuming that Commander Shepherd is even in the film. Commander Shepherd has not appeared in either the comics or the novels for this very reason.

          • Thats the thing though, I don't know how good the response would be if it didn't involve Shepard, I personally think their best bet is to just go with the discovery of Mass Relays and the Human/Turian War, but that's just me. I know some people would feel ripped off, like it wouldn't have touched half of the content made in Mass Effect.

      • Will it get the Hollywood treatment and everything we know and love about it is raped and murdered before our eyes?

        I've never understood the sentiment that "if it's turned into a movie, that ruins the source material." The movie mario bros was bad even by videogame movie standards, yet over a decade later I'm still loving Mario games. It didn't ruin anything. No matter how bad the movie is, Mass Effect is out there, it can't be "murdered" by a movie.

        And they really need to change some things about it. Specifically the elevators. [penny-arcade.com]

      • by dj245 (732906)
        Watchmen might have been a faithful adaptation, but as a movie it wasn't that good. The first 6 minutes or so are terrifically well done- That's about as far into the poor-quality CAM copy before I decided that this movie was worth my money and I ran to the theater. The rest of the movie though was a huge disappointment. I still want my $8 back.
      • by smcn (87571)

        But who knows, 300 and Watchmen were pretty faithful adaptations and maybe we won't have Johnny Fucking Depp or Robert Downey Jr playing Commander Shepard.

        I don't understand why discussions of the movie always come around to who should play Shepard. The only way this movie can be faithful to the Mass Effect universe is if it's not about Shepard. The crux of the entire series is that Shepard looks and acts differently in the hands of each player. The universe is so deep and there are so many historical events that could be portrayed, it would be a shame to simply remake any part of the games.

        But, this is Hollywood, and the fact that Drew Karpyshyn's name is no

    • by AP31R0N (723649)

      Leave me alone... i'm 'bratin.

      To Miranda Lawson.

  • Females! (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Why does it have to be a man... I want my hot commander bouncing around!

    And making sweet love to kelly.

  • by deniable (76198) on Thursday May 27, 2010 @02:30AM (#32358938)
    Since he's made so many other game adaptations.
  • by blahplusplus (757119) on Thursday May 27, 2010 @02:31AM (#32358944)

    ... Commander Shepard and this is my favorite store on the citadel!

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      Oh god... I can't imagine the marketing spin offs of this. I mean Iron man was bad enough, but can you imagine Sheppard with every possible product he could endorse?:
      -I'm Commander Shepard and this is my favorite hamburger
      -I'm Commander Shepard and this is my favorite battery
      -I'm Commander Shepard and this is my favorite shoe

      It will be epic.
  • EVE Online (Score:4, Interesting)

    by DigiShaman (671371) on Thursday May 27, 2010 @02:33AM (#32358960) Homepage

    My vote goes for a Movie based on the EVE Online universe. Keep it very dark, moving, and awe inspiring.

    I bet you could get away with multiple franchise spin-offs too. Just like with Star Trek and Stargate.

    • I am so for that. Some of the recent EVE trailers would make fantastic parts of movies.
      Can you imagine a story following someone through becoming a pod pilot, running a mission against pirates (say, the classic "worlds collide" rescue mission, you could have them sneak the first areas and then uncloak to expletives from the pirates, always a good scene), and as a result, getting embroiled in a war for the galactic civilisation's very survival!?

      At some point there has to be a scene where their poor little fr

      • by dkf (304284)

        Ok, I'm no writer. But damn I would like to see an EVE movie.

        The problem is, in order for the movie to not suck like an overblown arthouse film, it has to have a good story. OK, the story can have loads of cheese, but it still needs to be there. Getting a good story out of EVE would be tricky precisely because the game (as with any MMORPG) is so much about users making their own stories.

        By that criterion, Mass Effect is much simpler to make into a movie because it is so much more focussed on a single player being the badass hero in a pretty strongly-determined story.

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by TechnoFrood (1292478)

          Well there have been 2 official EVE books, EVE: Burning Life [amazon.co.uk] and EVE: The Empyrean Age [amazon.co.uk], which admittedly I haven't read so I can't comet on their suitability for conversion to a movie. However there is the fan made Clear Skies [clearskiesthemovie.com], using a combination of footage from EVE mixed with footage shot using Garry's Mod (Source engine sandbox mod) for interior shots, which I think could very well be expanded to a feature length movie (hell Clear skies 1 and 2 together are 1.4 hours long) and seems to capture the unive

          • Apparently not using Garry's mod, seems it was with the Source SDK.

          • Hey, just wanted to say thanks for linking to Clear Skies. I found myself enjoying the story and characters, the pacing was decent with animation and voice acting that was surprisingly good for a fan made video. My only real critique was there being a serious need to fix the audio levels when talking over explosions.

    • by Rogerborg (306625) on Thursday May 27, 2010 @04:08AM (#32359372) Homepage
      That would be awesome. The movie could start, we could get up and go play some frisbee, come back in 2 hours, and get the "movie watched" experience without the tiresome business of having to sit through it!
      • Just remember that with a 2 hour watch time for Mass Effect 1, Mass Effect 2 will take 7 hours, Mass Effect 3 will take 21, 4 will take 3 days 4 hours, and 5 will take a month at least. Best to go to the bathroom first.
    • by amn108 (1231606)

      I don't see any voting bins...

    • Best part would be most charachters wouldn't need actual actors. Would probably make the movie cheap to make, especially since the 3d models are already there and done and it's mostly in CG.

    • Half Life? (Score:2, Interesting)

      by phorm (591458)

      How about Half Life + HL2?

      The old "portal to a dimension of baddies" has been used before, but there's plenty of other plot in there. Aliens preventing human conception. Traitors/Quislings. The combine. Headcrabs with headcrab zombines. A wacky scientist in the resistance. Ravenholm...

      There's plenty of stuff in there for a good movie.

  • Shepard (Score:5, Funny)

    by fightinfilipino (1449273) on Thursday May 27, 2010 @02:37AM (#32358982) Homepage
    Wrex
    • Actually, if you take the time to talk to your team-mates etc, MA did a pretty good job of fleshing out their personalities, etc. There were also quite a number of offside jokes etc, though sometimes you had to think a bit to catch them.

      For example, the bit on "Krogan Testicles"

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=05Nl4KmGxYQ [youtube.com]
      "Why would anyone want Krogan testicles" ...
      "They'll pay up to 10000cr each, that's 40000 for a full set"

  • Can I chose how I want the story to develop?
    • by XiaoMing (1574363)

      Yeah! I strongly suggest they allow that, especially if they want it to turn out as popular as SnAKeS oN a PlAnE!!11one.

    • by ClubStew (113954)

      Like "All My Circuits: the Movie"?

      • Movie:If you want Calculon to race to the laser gun battle in his hover-Ferarri, press 1. If you want Calculon to double-check his paperwork, press 2. Enter now.
      • (Fry presses 1)
      • Movie: You have pressed 2.
      • Fry: No I didn't!
      • Movie: I'm almost positive you did.
  • drm? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    The movie can not start. For security reasons, only a limited number of machines can ever be licensed by a single purchase. This limit has been reached. Please purchase another registration code, reinstall, and then try again.

  • Don't go spreading it around
  • Hollywood rarely gets it right. It's not impossible that they'll do a good job but, based on their track record, the odds aren't great.

  • Nethack or Dwarf Fortress.

    Nethack. A medieval version of The Cube but with the characters entering one at a time.

    And for DF... Something from the PoV of an immigrant that just arrives to the fortress. Something between Brazil, Fortress and LotR. With Orlando Bloom as the elf merchant. And Gerard Butler as the hammerer.

    • by alexhard (778254)

      I would pay very large amounts of money for the DF movie.

      • by mcvos (645701)

        I'd love to see a Nethack movie. Even just to see what kind of weird stuff they polymorph the dog into.

      • by muridae (966931)
        Can you imagine what would happen if it was bad? Everyone walking out of the theater in a bad 'mood', and no forges in sight. Think of the tantrums. . .

        Actually, yeah, I would pay to see the reaction of that many fell and possessed fans.
  • Uwe Boll (Score:2, Funny)

    by jaryd (1702090)
    is rumored to be attached to direct! EPIC WIN!
    • I doubt it. Legendary Pictures has a better than decent track record, and they are associated with the Warcraft movie in development, and Boll was told in no uncertain terms to f off when he expressed interest in directing that.
  • There is enough story in the first game to make a good 2-3 movies. The problem would be costs causing cuts in parts. Imho, taking the engine and upping it to do prerendered scenes and packaging that as a movie would be the best way to do it, at least until Mass Effect 3 comes out.
    • There is enough story in the first game to make a good 2-3 movies. The problem would be costs causing cuts in parts.

      That's gonna be the big problem...if they go episodic, as the game franchise has gone, it's still going to be hard as hell to fit into a reasonable film (100-130 minutes); you can't segment it much more than the games have been, because the cliffhanger effect would wear out very quickly.

      In any case, this has a good chance of being a trainwreck, a pretty good chance of capturing the fan audience, and a slim chance of being a box office champion. On a semi-related sidenote, it has an excellent chance of be

      • But I won't pay to see it in 3-D. Ever. Biggest ripoff in cinema EVER--I go to see a movie to escape reality, not have shit 'flying' at me.
        • by znerk (1162519)

          But I won't pay to see it in 3-D. Ever. Biggest ripoff in cinema EVER--I go to see a movie to escape reality, not have shit 'flying' at me.

          Didn't see Avatar, I take it? I've never been big on 3D, either, but in my opinion, Avatar is the first (and so far, only*) movie to have done 3D without shoving the 3D in your face. In other words, "they done it right".

          * The new Clash of the Titans didn't shove it in your face, either, but then again, half the scenes in the 3D version were in 2D.

  • Filmatise events of "Star Control 2" instead. The story is just as rich, if not richer. One could even keep most of the stage props from an already started ME filming production :-)

  • by ronoholiv (1216262) on Thursday May 27, 2010 @04:09AM (#32359378)
    My recommendation? Leave Shepard alone. Work on another point in time in the universe,preferably in a spot where all the back-story that would have to be told is either integral to the story or doesn't limit people from understanding the story. Maybe pluck stories from the First Contact War, or events just before the start of Mass Effect.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Unkemptwolf (915070)
      Mass Effect: First Contact

      That would be awesome. Its even already got a cool story line: Humans encounter Turians. Turians blow up Humans. Humans send a small fleet that blows up the Turians, Turians send a bigger fleet to capture Shanxi, thinking it is the Human homeworld. Humans send a bigger fleet, kick the Turians in the teeth, and take back Shanxi. Council realizes that the whole thing was a big misunderstanding and brokers a peace treaty.

      I would pay to see that. It sounds pretty awesome to me. C
      • by ElKry (1544795)
        Sound like a Dragon Ball Z script to me. Powerful entity 1 meets less powerful entity 2, and overpowers it. Later, powerful entity 3 kick's less powerful entity 1's ass, and in a great twist, powerful entity 4 arrives to totally destroy powerful entity 3. Rinse and repeat.
      • by WCLPeter (202497)

        Actually what you have there is a bit too much for one film, but it would make a great trilogy:

        Part One: Humans encounter Turians. Turians blow up Humans. Humans send a small fleet that blows up the Turians
        Part Two: Turians send a bigger fleet to capture Shanxi, thinking it is the Human homeworld. - Movie ends on a down note making it "dark", will probably become the fan favorite.
        Part Three: Humans send a bigger fleet, kick the Turians in the teeth, and take back Shanxi. Council realizes that the whole thin

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by mkairys (1546771)
      Totally agree with you on that point. If they choose the First Contact War as the story for the film, they could easily focus on Captain Anderson being the lead character. He was an interesting and developed character in the series and his back story could translate into a good film if done right.
    • There are several Mass Effect books that explore the early days and talk about when humans first discover the relays and subsequently, other races. I figure that's the territory any movie adaptation will start with.

      They are worth a read if for no other reason than to get Anderson's story. Check out Mass Effect: Revelation, Mass Effect: Ascension, and Mass Effect: Retribution.

  • I think will bring in characters/Actors from Mass effect 2 Adam Baldwin, Tricia Helfer, Claudia Black, Yvonne Strahovsky, at the very least
  • Clash of the Titans (bland movie, with bland writing, starring a bland lead actor) gets listed among a bunch of moderate to great movies without so much as a hiccup and The Hangover gets a pretentious "um"? WTF.
  • You think they will keep Seth Green as joker? Kind of makes me wonder if they will replace him with some other guy.
    • by wjousts (1529427)
      Uh, good point. I love Seth Green's work on Family Guy (as Chris) and Robot Chicken, and even the work in Mass Effect was almost tolerable, but he has made some truly awful movies.
  • In fact, just get the lady who does the voice to play it. She's awesome, and I can't imagine the story any other way (my Shepard is a skinny black woman with a buzzed head--she looks Ethiopian or thereabouts).
    • Agreed—she was a good 75% of why I even liked the game. And my Shepard looked the same, although Jen Hale herself is an early-middle-aged pretty white lady, which would be fine with me as far as action film stereotype-breaking. I can't remember the last time we've seen that kind of thing since Sigourney Weaver herself .
      • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Sadly, the studio's thought process is likely to be along the lines of: "This is a video game movie. Therefore, the target audience is 13-year-old boys. Therefore, the lead must be male. Oh, and forget realistic armor -- extra-skimpy outfits all round for the token females we deign to include!"

        Wait, they already did that second one in ME2 ...

  • As long as it's not like Clash of the Titans, the rest of Legendary's films have been pretty awesome. How are they going to get the hours spent driving the mako through rocky terrain into the film though?? I at least hope they stick the to game's storyline rather than "interpreting" it.
  • No thanks (Score:4, Insightful)

    by elrous0 (869638) * on Thursday May 27, 2010 @08:43AM (#32361290)
    I loved Mass Effect 1 and 2. I have almost every achievement known to man in them, even in the DLC. I am a major fan. But I have no interest in a movie. Playing Mass Effect has, in fact, made me much *less* inclined to see a movie. Why? Because any Shepard on that screen won't be *MY* Shepard. Any story on that screen won't be something I will play a part in. The only choice I will have in that theater is which size popcorn to buy. That's not Mass Effect--it's just a glorified game trailer. I am no more interested in watching it than I would be in watching a video of someone else playing through ME1 or ME2. I couldn't give a shit less how the director wanted to play *his* Shepard.
    • When i finished ME2, i put down my controller and stated "This was a better story then 90% of science fiction movies I have seen in my lifetime."
    • by Shihar (153932)

      I agree that I don't really have much desire to see Shepard running around killing things. I mean, the ME plot takes three 40+ hour video games to tell... it probably isn't going to translate in any friendly way. That said, the ME universe is awesome and interesting. I would LOVE to see a movie set in that world. Frankly, I think a lot of video games would make horrible movies, but the universe that they are set in would be completely worthy of a standalone movie. From a financial perspective, it makes

  • People, stop whining that the movie will suck because the Commander Shepherd on the silver screen won't be your Commander Shepherd from the games. Shepherd has not appeared in any of the Mass Effect comics or novels for this very reason. Most likely the movie will not have Shepherd in it, either. It will be a separate story set in the Mass Effect universe.

  • Every playthrough I've done on Mass Effect 1 and 2 was with a female character. Why? Two reasons: for one thing, Jennifer Hale is a fantastic voice actress, and her work on ME 1 & 2 was truly great. (The male voice actor, not so much - his performance seemed flat by comparison.) Second, I figured if I'm going to have to look at an ass for 50+ hours, it might as well be a nice one.
  • Once upon a time, adapting video games to film made a kind of sense. You take the low-res pictures from a much-beloved digital property, and pump millions of dollars into a really pretty film. Sure you lost interactivity, but you gained some things early games didn't have--plot, characters, and eye candy.

    We're not there anymore. Mass Effect was essentially interactive cinema. With lots of eye candy, production values comparable to a big-budget film, more characters, plot, and character development tha

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