Grand Theft Auto film all but ruled out

Dan Houser disbelieves open-world crime games could be turned into two-hour movie, says Rockstar would have to have creative control of any such project.

This week saw Rockstar Games announce an October 29 release date for the second Xbox 360-exclusive expansion of Grand Theft Auto IV, the Ballad of Gay Tony. At the same time, one of the developer's cofounders all but ruled out the chance of there ever being a Grand Theft Auto movie.

Hollywood loves car chases.

"We don’t believe that the Grand Theft Auto games, which are massive in scope and structurally complex, can be adequately compressed into a two-hour movie," Rockstar creative vice president Dan Houser told the Los Angeles Times.

Houser, whose brother Sam is Rockstar's president and a cocreator of the GTA series, went on to bemoan the low level of game-to-film adaptations to date. "It seems obvious to us that maintaining the long-term integrity of any entertainment property has been dependent on not making substandard spin-off products to people whose primary interest is making a quick buck," he opined. Though Houser did not name any specific game-based movies, one does not need to go far to find examples of such critical and commercial failures, with the Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li being the most recent example.

But Dan Houser doesn't love Hollywood.

Houser's comments echoed those he gave in February 2008 following reports that Rockstar parent Take-Two Interactive was in advance negotiations to license a GTA film, possibly starring Eminem. However, he did lay out the conditions that would have to be met in the unlikely event a GTA movie were made.

"If we ever decide to do a film, it will be because we have resolved our creative doubts, and while retaining enough control to ensure that if the movie is terrible, at least we will know we ruined the property ourselves," declared the veteran developer.

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Discussion

299 comments
jpr60231
jpr60231

MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE MOVIE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Rx_Nightmare
Rx_Nightmare

Lawl, while we're on the subject of game movies that epicly failed, anyone remember Doom? Didnt think so. Wasnt there already a GTA movie? Actually yeah there was. Maybe the Grand Theft Auto games CAN be "adequately compressed into a(n) X Hour movie."

thomas250
thomas250

There is too much stuff goin on in gta for there 2 b a movie so i think they should make a series and put it on HBO or somthin. Then maybe it would b successful and not sell themselves out like the rest of them. And then they'd innovate somthing new 2 the world once again

ECB2POD
ECB2POD

there has been a grand theft auto movie. it was based on the 1st game

chomomon
chomomon

if they do things right, i think gta IV would make a pretty good movie. it has great characters and a great storyline. they'd just need a good director and good actors who resemble the main characters.

-HD
-HD

sounds good

gtaproz
gtaproz

actually no, gta is based off missions and side missions and besides, how can you cram a usually 15-20 hour experience into a 2 hour film? It isnt really a good idea to do so

Masters2008
Masters2008

A movie about gta would be easy, hell, I could do it. There is so much stuff to build a movie from that they could have many. However, I do think they should go in order, Vice City first, then San Andreas and either the main story from gta 3, lcs or 4. So, yeah, a movie would be really easy for them to create.

skateordie985
skateordie985

GTA4 is my favorite game, and unless ROCK* is the one in charge of the whole movie, the movie will probably be bad. especially if its turned into a movie by... *gags* disney...

gdfsgdfg
gdfsgdfg

i thought gta games where aleardy movies

waleo
waleo

@ xialon You've gotta give the kids a little respect. They are not blank slates that video games make their mark upon. They're influenced by everything in their life, video games and movies included. Do not assume something with such negative themes as GTA will imprint itself exactly upon the kid. I love the game but I'm fully aware that it's unacceptable behavior. Pretending to kill people does not make kids think it's okay to really do it. They're not idiots, they're children. Treat them as such.

Windduckelk
Windduckelk

There already is a GTA movie...it's called Crank

jmrwacko
jmrwacko

I love how Rockstar doesn't sell out its own franchises like the other studios. Way to go!

Jaydeep12
Jaydeep12

a gta movie won't work but an hbo series might work cuz all of their series are legit

hipgangsta
hipgangsta

can you two take this somewhere else?

NPX190
NPX190

@ johnryandaplin Did I? Well I guess that was pretty deceitful. Just hope that unrelated movie doesn't happen again to the GTA name.

johnryandaplin
johnryandaplin

@NPX190 grand theft auto in 1977 indeed existed but you where saying that the movie was about the game :P

NPX190
NPX190

@johnryandaplin First of all, don't be calling me a dumbass, when you apparently are for not reading all the details. Secondly, I didn't say that GTA2 vid was a movie, but proof Rockstar did at one attempt how it would look in live action. Third, Grand Theft Auto was a movie with Ron Howard back in 1977 by FOX Atomic. Try reading, and researching, before flaming. Don't even try editing your old post, its saved in my inbox.

hipgangsta
hipgangsta

They should just make Grand Theft Auto, the movie with GTA4 or maybe Chinatown wars, that would be good, but if they agree to make a GTA movie with the first GTA, then prepare for a bad rating from IMDB

tehfireballer
tehfireballer

I honestly think it would be fairly easy to make this a good movie...

xxpoo521xx
xxpoo521xx

Ifyouthink about it, if there was a movie titled "Grand Theft Auto" its main premise would have to be about stealing cars, it couldnt be an epeic crime drama because it would be too much like Gone in 60 Seconds or Fast and Furious

Sins-of-Mosin
Sins-of-Mosin

This series is 95% better than any movie so why bother?

link899
link899

Are there planned multiple movie expansions that will be exclusive to crappy theaters and overpriced?

Mister__Awesome
Mister__Awesome

Movies based from video games have had horrible adaptations. Interesting to see where this goes...

xialon
xialon

"We don’t believe that the Grand Theft Auto games, which are massive in scope and structurally complex..." Ya right. GTA is the perfect game that gives a bad image to parents. Young children learn way too many bad things from this game. GTA should have a stricter regulation against allowing parents with young children to buy this game. Parents buy anything for their children, but then complain when they start learning and applying bad ideas they get from games like GTA (even though it is hard to find a game bad as GTA). When I say GTA is a bad game, I mean that it is too mature, gory, repulsive, insulting, rude, perverted, etc. Which does appeal to a certain group. But, it should not be played by the young. What has happened to Australia in the gaming sense is lesson to be learned. GTA should not make a movie or even think about it. They are soiling the youth. They are to some degree responsible for the horrid actions that children tend to make.

Gadeos
Gadeos

I think GTA should always stay as a video game. A movie would blew away the hole GTA experience

xbox4life76
xbox4life76

I personally don't care if they make a movie or not, I'd rather them spend their time and money on solid GTA games then movies. If they are sincere about not doing movies cause of the quick buck concept, then I have respect for them for doing that.

Get_Shorty
Get_Shorty

They could film me playing the game and then sell tickets for IMAX. Maybe that will satisfy those who want a GTA movie.

necronaux
necronaux

I'd hate to see a GTA movie. The big draw to the GTA franchise is being able to do these things yourself, not to watch someone else (play) do them.

MrOfficerDonut
MrOfficerDonut

YES! Defenalty! Well, I mean they already made Lost and Damned, and Ballad of Gay Tony

driver_unknown
driver_unknown

Wouldnt it make more sense to turn it into an episodic TV show?

drangel_jam
drangel_jam

If they make a GTA film, it will be more interesting if the movie was entitled after one of the games; but the fact that most games are losely based on other properties, it just won't feel fresh. And if they make an original story for the movie, it will just feel like any other crime action drama. GTA, should remain a game, in my eyes, for now.

zouhou
zouhou

if u watch the gta cut scenes there u go a movie right there just watch the cut scened in gta 4's story mode alone theres 3 hours worth

chewitt3103
chewitt3103

I think if it is done well a GTA movie could be a good success, but it would have to be more than one movie to tell all the story. GTA is so big and non-linear that one movie would probably be impossible to make without leaving important bits of the story out. I would rather see an article that says they are working on GTA V, the greatest GTA game ever :)

Regisland
Regisland

im ok with Uncharted movie,it might be good....but GTA? o.O

soeppel
soeppel

I don't get it. If we're not talking about making one of the existing games into a movie there is nothing to make a movie about anyway. The only distinct thing you could use from the games is the sense of humor. I'm sure the writers at Rockstar could make an excellent screenplay. In fact I hope they do, it would probably be a great crime/thriller/drama, but there would be no reason to slap a GTA-label on it.

Arrondi
Arrondi

A movie would be a terrible idea! It would fail epically since a you couldn't possibly fit it all into a 2, or even a 3 hour movie! A "speed-run" in GTA IV, denoted by the achievement "Liberty City Minute", which requires you to finish the game in 30 hours. If it takes 30 hours to finish a game, while hurrying, a movie would be an abomination full of plot holes. Leave GTA as a video game!

chemicalbrother
chemicalbrother

Rockstar is awesome. A movie is a bad idea, and is selling out. It would sell just because it's a movie called "Grand Theft Auto". But they are smarter than that, and don't give in to any shhhstuff.

brok
brok

But there IS a Grand Theft Auto: the movie. It's called Crank.

MitchBAM06
MitchBAM06

I saw a fan made video for a gta movie trailer . Got my hopes up and the housers are there to ruin it for me. Ill see if i can find the link. But i dont think gta would transfer well to screen anyway. too much for the theater

GC4ever
GC4ever

i dont see rockstar selling out this is not going to happen and i'm glad

xxpoo521xx
xxpoo521xx

I will never forgive R* if they do make a movie and put m&m as any lead or co-star role. If its done right and has a great director (I'm thinking David Fincher, Wachoski's, or Martin Scorsese) then maybe for once we can kick this ever-lasting trend of video game movies sucking. Imagine a world where Ewe Boll was banned from making movies and that video game adaptations were actually great and gave the respect the games deserve. I'd rather live in that world than this one. Instead of people clinching when they read about a video game movie, they might actually bounce in their crappy computer chairs in joy. If you put the effort and make sure the audience notices it by actually making a great movie that could live as a classic on its own then this ugly trend will be burried with all the other crappy adaptations. Hell, GTA could make a great movie, kind of like the "Greatest Hits" of all action movies, who cares if its been done before, all the movies it takes after were released 10-15 years ago. Just imagine Heat with a lot more action. DO IT RIGHT AND IT WILL BE GREAT

ResidnetEvil777
ResidnetEvil777

staring eminem???? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

partytimekegs
partytimekegs

PS. If Eminem gets a role then how about Cage too?

partytimekegs
partytimekegs

I hope its three movies long and three hours each. =)

x8VXU6
x8VXU6

if they get the right writer and some unknown acters but they have to be good, they could do this

unknown2007
unknown2007

well...only way i see a GTA film being a success is if they did what the godfather did and make it three hours so the producers/writers."etc" actually get a chance to tell the story without messing up the film...because lets get real GTA base movie will in fact be a failure if the people in charge of it think they can just tell a story in 2 hours flat. making the film very choppy and unfinished..kinda like what they've done with most video games base movies. especially with a game like GTA which has so much history and stuff that writers can easily leave out if it's limited to a 2 hour film. even if they have to extend to more parts I'm all for it. great writers can definitely make it happen.

XtremeX10X
XtremeX10X

I hope GTA never gets turned into a film, Don't look at this comment as negative but GTA wouldn't work as a film, Rockstar would want full control of the project and so would the studio making the film and the end result wouldn't be what we expect in the games although the film would make a s**t load of cash from ticket sales alone.