SIDEBAR: Just over a year ago, Epic Games confirmed that New Line Cinema would be bringing its hit Xbox 360 shooter Gears of War to the big screen, with responsibility for the screenplay entrusted to Stuart Beattie (Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy, Collateral). The crushing weight of Gears fans' expectations for the big-screen adaptation of their favored fragfest apparently wasn't heavy enough, as film site LatinoReview reports that in Beattie's spare time, the scribe has been working on the script for a flick based on another Xbox 360 shooter. (The site does not identify its source on that news, nor its source's relationship to Beattie or the project.)
Beattie has reportedly been writing a screenplay for the on-again, off-again Halo film in hopes that it will spark some movement on the moribund project. Though Beattie has had no problem finding work (he is also reportedly writing the Spy Hunter film adaptation and penned the screenplay for the G.I. Joe movie), the writer is apparently a big fan of the sci-fi shooter series and wrote the script without actually having a contract to do so.
According to LatinoReview, Beattie's Halo script is based on the Halo: The Fall of Reach novel, and follows the Master Chief from his conscription into Spartan training at a young age up through his first encounters with the Covenant. Beattie has also reportedly plotted out a second and third film that would bring the story up through the events of Halo 3.
As for the Xbox 360-exclusive sci-fi shooter adaptation that Beattie is already confirmed to be writing, ComingSoon.net is reporting that fans looking for Gears of War to hit the local megaplex will likely have to wait a good long while. The site quotes producer Wyck Godfrey as saying that the filmmakers are about to sign a director to helm the project, and are hoping to get the movie in theaters for summer of 2010. When the project was originally announced, the target date was summer of 2009.