Hollywood director Gore Verbinski has shed light on the reasons behind the cancellation of the planned movie adaptation of Take-Two’s BioShock videogame franchise during a recent Reddit AMA.
Turns out, the big screen version of the underwater-based first-person shooter was mere weeks away from filming before bosses decided to pull the plug on the whole production, casting serious doubt on the future of a potential BioShock movie.
“We were eight weeks prior shooting when the plug was pulled,” he said. “It's an R rated movie. I wanted to keep it R rated, I felt like that would be appropriate, and it's an expensive movie. It's a massive world we're creating and it's not a world we can simply go to locations to shoot.”
The director added that the team was looking to “build an entire underworld universe,” something which caused some friction among executives at Universal Pictures.
“At that time also there were some R rated, expensive R rated movies that were not working,” Verbinski added, in a possible reference to Watchmen by Zack Snyder, which ended up pulling in just $107 million against a $130 million budget.
“So I think things have changed and maybe there will be another chance, but it's very difficult when you're eight weeks away from shooting a movie you really can see in your head and you've almost filmed the entire thing, so emotionally you're right at that transition from architect to becoming a contractor and that will be a difficult place to get back to.”
BioShock creator Ken Levine said back in 2012 that he was hopeful the movie would still get made at some point, although he has since moved onto form a smaller studio out of the ashes of developer Irrational Games, which shuttered following the launch of BioShock Infinite in 2013. He’s now working on an open-world title.
Despite Levine’s departure from the franchise, Take-Two has assured fans that the BioShock franchise is still very much alive, although we’ve yet to hear any news on a fresh installment in the series. Still, why not revisit the games with BioShock: The Collection on PS4 while you’re waiting?