Uncharted movie shouldn’t be an exact adaptation, says the game’s lead actor, Nolan North. After over a decade of development hell, the highly popular action-adventure video game adaptation from Sony is finally moving toward a confirmed release date. Slated for July 16, 2021, fans can be forgiven for looking upon the date with slight skepticism. The film, which focuses on treasure hunter Nathan Drake as he journeys around the world, battling villains, has been bumped back three times now by Sony. The most recent change of release date came as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic – an unforeseen challenge to the film industry.
None the less, the wait for Uncharted has been a frustrating one for video game fans. Its primary cast has been in place for some time now, with Tom Holland portraying Drake and Mark Wahlberg on board as Drake’s trusty father-figure/mentor, Victor “Sully” Sullivan. As previously revealed by Holland, the Uncharted film will focus on Drake’s origin story – something that hasn’t been completely covered by any of the four games in the series. It’s a step away from simply fitting the games’ most memorable moments into one wholly faithful adaptation, and while that may trouble some fans, at least one person who’s been extremely close to the series over the years is happy about it.
In a new interview with Screen Junkies, North, who is the voice of Drake in the Uncharted video games, said that he doesn’t think the upcoming film should be an exact adaptation. Citing the immersive nature of Uncharted for gamers, North pointed out that the games already have elements of cinema in them and that those elements are largely controlled by the player. The statement seems to be in line with the direction that the film is reportedly taking, as it doesn’t aim (as of this writing) to recreate the events seen in the Uncharted games. Said North on the topic:
“If they were going to do a one to one type thing – which again, I don’t think is a very good idea for video games, because Uncharted is a movie and you’re the star of that game. You’re the star of that movie because you’re Nathan Drake, not me. It’s my voice, it’s my movements, but you’re Nathan Drake. You make the decisions to jump, run, fall off a cliff – like I do – whatever.”
North does seem to have a point in his quote above, especially since video game adaptations have a lengthy history of not going over as well as intended upon release. Exactly why the “video game curse” exists is a matter of debate, but one of the key factors in the phenomenon could arguably be attributed to video games – particularly open-world ones – being a somewhat personalized experience. Those personal choices that players face with Uncharted or Grand Theft Auto are what the games are created for. A film on the other hand, is typically not participatory in the same way.
While games allow players to charter their own course and tackle the challenges how they see fit, a film adaptation faces an impossible uphill battle. There’s literally no way to capture all those experiences and put them within the context of a solid narrative. It’s still a long way off until next July when Uncharted is due to release, so it’s possible story details for the film could still change at this point. Given the film’s difficult development up to this point, fans can only hope that Sony will continue with their current plans and not do a straight adaptation of the Uncharted games.
Next: Why A Young Uncharted Movie With Tom Holland Is A Bad Idea
Source: Screen Junkies