New Line Cinema has begun development on a feature film adaptation of “Rampage,” a classic video game about monstrous apes and lizards that reduced cities to rubble.
John Rickard, who co-produced the A Nightmare on Elm Street remake and Final Destination 5, is meeting with writers, according to the story handed to the Hollywood Reporter. Before 2010 Rickard is credited only as an assistant to Brett Ratner, the director and former Oscar producer who resigned in disgrace this month.
The game centered on three ordinary citizens who morphed into a Godzilla-like lizard, a King Kong-like gorilla, and a giant werewolf. The object was to destroy climb and destroy buildings while battling the military (and I played it every day on Nintendo). The movie will essentially borrow the title and visuals, and take on a somewhat comedic tone “in the vein of Ghostbusters or Independence Day.” A big budget movie that relies on an existing ’80s brand and evokes the universal appeal of successful franchises. What else is new?
The strangest piece about this development isn’t that there is a movie being made from an arcade game with no discernible story. It’s where the movie is being developed. Warner Bros acquired Midway Games, which created Rampage, in 2009 (for $33 million) and New Line Cinema merged into WB in 2008. Also at WB, Legendary Pictures is developing a Godzilla reboot and Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim, both essentially about massive mutant monsters attacking cities. Three monster movies emerging under one roof.