It appears that one of video games' perennial early classics, Missile Command will be getting ready to hit the big screen. Coming off the game's 30th anniversary last year, 20th Century Fox has added the arcade and Atari staple to what is now a growing list in Hollywood of head-scratching brand adaptations from the world of board games and early video games, such as Asteroids, Battleship, Ouija, and Rollercoaster Tycoon over at Universal and Space Invaders over at Warner Bros. However, it's pretty clear that, much like those examples, a game where you shoot jagged-pixelated explosions at descending white lines on the screen will provide little source material for a live-action feature. So, the script will likely have to build a story from the ground-up around what is speculated to be some Cold War-themed action-drama. So, who could possibly up for that job?
Tasked with the responsibility of actually providing a workable plot, will be a duo of scribes consisting of Burk Sharpless and Matt Sazama whose work will appear in the reboot of Flash Gordon. While no director has been named as of yet, producers Peter Chernin (Rise of the Apes, Terra Nova) and Dylan Clark (Rise of the Apes, They Marched Into Sunlight) are on board and Atari head Jim Wilson will oversee the film as executive producer.
This new crop of films being labeled with classic brands is definitely an odd thing. While one could argue that the studios are simply using name recognition to promote what would essentially be generic scripts, the name brand recognition would be too old to gel with younger audiences. Additionally, it is clear that these films are being written around the classic brands and not vice-versa. It may, therefore, be an attempt from the companies who own these classic brands to rejuvenate the strength and name recognition of their property in the hopes of yielding better sales of their board games and more reinventions of the classic video games.
What's your take on the Missile Command movie project? Could this work? Or is it one more step towards Brawndo: The Movie With Electrolytes?