E3 2008: Inafune, Arad, and Hayter talk Lost Planet film
Capcom dedicates its entire press conference to a panel about the upcoming silver screen adaptation of its sci-fi action game.
Before Capcom's E3 Media & Business Summit press conference, a number of the publisher's big announcements had already been made. Microsoft spilled the brains on Resident Evil 5's March 13, 2009 release date during its own press conference, while Variety reported on a movie deal for Capcom's Lost Planet series.
So what aces has the publisher kept up its sleeve? There's still the matter of two mystery projects the publisher has slated to debut at the show, one of which might be in development at a European studio using Epic Games' Unreal Engine 3. And when exactly will Street Fighter IV or Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix arrive? Will Dead Rising ever get a sequel?
At least some of these questions should be answered today at Capcom's press briefing, which is scheduled to begin at 4:30 p.m. PT. Check back here for a live blog of all the action.
[5:08] Capcom started its press conference late, but made up for that in part by quickly getting into the brass tacks and confirming the Lost Planet movie deal.
[5:08] A production team of eight creators are brought to the stage, headlined by ex-Marvel chief creative officer Avi Arad and screenwriter/voice of Solid Snake David Hayter.
[5:09] Arad says the game is perfect and has all the pieces of a hit movie, from a reluctant hero to a betrayal and an issue close to everybody's hearts due to recent world events: energy.
[5:10] Arad has worked with Hayter before on the X-Men films and emphasizes his belief that Hayter is the man to bring Lost Planet to the big screen. Arad starts to say he's sure there will be more Lost Planet games, then catches himself and says "I think" there will be more games.
[5:11] Arad passes the floor to Hayter, who talks about the genesis of the project. He said Arad brings him projects from time to time, and he always considers them seriously because of Arad's recommendation. He played Lost Planet and said he was blown away, especially with the depiction of a world that came out of an energy crisis on the losing end.
[5:12] Hayter also talks about how much he loves the arctic setting, citing his love of John Carpenter's remake of The Thing, and saying today's technology should allow them to do that on a much larger scale.
[5:13] Hayter introduces Ari Arad, president of Arad Productions and son of Avi. Lost Planet was one of the first next-gen games he played, and he felt right out the gate like he was playing something special.
[5:14] He quickly passes to Lost Planet creator Keiji Inafune, who says through a translator that he originally conceived of the game because he wanted a project that would become a Hollywood movie.
[5:15] Making something good enough to deserve a Hollywood movie was the development team's driving motivation during the making of Lost Planet, Inafune said.
[5:16] He adds that the team put movie-friendly elements into the game intentionally, like a love story, breathtaking vistas, and giant robots.
[5:17] [Correction: The panel is seven creators and a translator.]
[5:19] Inafune talks about the creative process, working with Avi, and hearing his thoughts on how to bring the movie to the silver screen. He adds that Avi is the person who understands this game the most of the film industry people he's discussed the matter with.
[5:20] The Lost Planet creator said the staff put a lot of blood, sweat, and tears into the game, and the entire team is looking forward to helping make the transition to film a successful one.
[5:21] He adds that he's delighted about Hayter's participation, and talks about how important it is to have someone that understands movies as well as games working on the project. The fact he speaks Japanese is also a plus.
[5:22] Inafune expresses how lucky he is to work with Arad and Hayter. Even though the movie isn't done yet, he feels like he's already achieved one of his dreams.
[5:23] Next up is Steven Paul, chairman and CEO of Seaside Entertainment. He also holds the same position in another gaming-friendly production company, Crystal Sky Entertainment.
[5:26] Paul recaps Arad's bit about Lost Planet's suitability to a movie adaptation, and then introduces the crowd to his "brother" and founder of GAGA Communications Tetsu Fujimura.
[5:26] Fujimura talks about how in previous years, Hollywood didn't pay enough attention to Japanese properties when it came to film adaptations. Now he says that's changing, and says it will be the biggest adaptation film of a game ever.
[5:27] Next up is Haruhiro Tsujimoto, president and chief operating officer of Capcom Ltd. Speaking through the translator, he mentions the Street Fighter and Resident Evil adaptations. Having found success with those films, the publisher is now looking to turn more of its properties into movies.
[5:29] Tsujimoto emphasizes Arad's understanding of the game, and says he's honored to work with him. He brings up Arad's success in bringing comic series to films. Capcom is aiming not only to turn the Lost Planet franchise into a movie, but to develop new games with the strategy of expanding into films in mind.
[5:30] Tusjimoto thanks the crowd, and the panel gets a round of applause.
[5:31] That appears to be it for the conference, as the crowd is thanked for attending and the lights are raised.