R-rated BioShock movie couldn't get funding - Verbinski

Would-be director of big-screen version of Irrational Games' underwater actioner says he could only raise capital for PG-13-rated adaptation--which he didn't want to do.

267 Comments

In 2008, Hollywood was abuzz with news of a hot new game-to-film project. The title being adapted was BioShock, the undersea shooter from Irrational Games, then called 2K Boston. The director linked to the project, Gore Verbinski, was no stranger to aquatic adventure, having directed the first three Pirates of the Caribbean films. If anyone could help BioShock get the big-budget treatment many felt it deserved, it was Verbinski.

Disturbing elements such as injections necessitated an
Disturbing elements such as injections necessitated an "R" rating for the BioShock movie, felt Verbinski.

Only Verbinski didn't. Just under a year later, reports of budgetary problems surfaced, eventually leading the director to abandon the project altogether.

So what happened?

Speaking with ComingSoon.net to promote his latest film, Rango, Verbinski explained why he dropped out of the BioShock project.

"I couldn't really get past anybody that would spend the money that it would take to do it and keep an 'R' rating," he said of the big-screen version of the M for Mature-rated game. "Alternately, I wasn't really interested in pursuing a 'PG-13' version, because the 'R' rating is inherent--Little Sisters and injections and the whole thing. I just wanted to really, really make it a movie where, four days later, you're still shivering and going, 'Jesus Christ!' … It's a movie that has to be really, really scary, but you also have to create a whole underwater world, so the price tag is high. We just didn't have any takers on an 'R'-rated movie with that price tag."

Verbinski went on to say that had he directed BioShock, it likely would have been in 3D. "[BioShock] would be a great movie to do in 3D," he explained. "I'd like to go into that world wearing a pair of glasses. I think in general, gaming is perfect for 3D. Anything where you're the protagonist. The kid in The Shining on the Big Wheel, going around corridors. That's what 3D is perfect for. To make people feel on edge."

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Avatar image for Owner34
Owner34

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Its a shame because it would make such an unbelievable movie, but I guess no movie at all is better than a pg-13 one.

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Dynamo11

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Kinda happy it didn't get off the gorund. Bioshock was so original (inb4 System Shock 2) that not even Bioshock 2 did THAT well. It's one of those games where one was enough

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gawthy

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@NeilCardiff they will sing songs about little sisters sticking needles into dead people. There would b no possible way to make it a pg movie without it being unwatchable

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gawthy

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@gamepunk86 you rarely see a good movie- game or game- movie.

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BigJohnWV

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I can hear Uwe Boll counting his cash and getting ready.

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gamepunk86

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bioshock the game will always be better than bioshock the movie. you can't get that same experience by merely watching the screen. i'm tired of games into movies and vice versa. they're two entirely different mediums for a reason.

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gbrading

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Doesn't surprise me particularly. After all, video game film adaptations have a notorious reputation these days.

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cjf187x

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I think the problem is that people didn't want to go in on an R-rated movie because the "customer base" isn't there or some B.S. like that. Personally, when I look at action movies now compared to the violence and gore of action movies from the 80s to early 90s, no we have the technology but when you're watching Die Hard and you see people's knee caps being shot out, you don't get that in an action movie today. Just pure balls to the wall R-rated movie. It's too bad Bioshock would've been AMAZING in 3-D

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Avatar image for Bozanimal
Bozanimal

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The loss here is to non-gamers: Bioshock fans already enjoyed everything a movie might offer in terms of story, immersion, and atmosphere.

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0Aragorn0

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Amazing how a game like Bioshock that has the ground work for a good story and characters can't get funded but a movie like Splicer can. The content would definitely warrant an R rating (can you imagine playing a rated "T" for Bioshock?) Oh well, as much as I'd like to see what they'd do, I don't want Bioshock franchise tarnished if they make a bad movie.

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Avatar image for DanielL5583
DanielL5583

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I think BioShock would work very well as a movie. It has the setting, the characters, the story... It's all good.

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jgracingfan09

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two movies i want infamous movie and bioshock movie

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dkdk999

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I think it's just fine as a video game.

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wolf3ax

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It's unfortunate that producers don't feel they can make a profit from special effects intensive R movie. I say don't worry about the money and uphold integrity, making a faithful adaption of the game is more important. I tell you, if he was to start a gamer's fund to help contribute to the making of an R rated version I'd throw money into it, but I doubt that'd do any good considering the budgets for films these days keep creeping up on billions. Money sucks.

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Grimkillah

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If the mainstream Hollywood "producers" don't like the idea of the R rated movie, then I say lets do an X rated version. I mean little sisters and giant needles, there are enough innuendos to make it work, Besides, Hollywood is a dying industry, while adult entertainment is booming. Porn and gaming are meant to be together.

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Avatar image for syafiqjabar
syafiqjabar

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@GodGundamNT1 And the game's technical graphics have anything to do with the film, how? You are not supposed to play it like a normal shooter anyway. Levine has said that if you play it like that you need to use the Very Easy difficulty. Otherwise you need to play with a slower pace, and use the environment and plasmids. And I can tell you the story is not predictable at all. @mrhagane No, he doesn't want the movie to be PG-13, he wanted it to be R. But nobody wants to produce a movie like that. And Verbinski has done way more films than the Pirates series. @Richmaester6907 The way people react to 3D films, they are like the half-black, half-jew muslim gypsies of the movie world. @NeilCardiff Disney produced Kill Bill and Saw films.

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flammable_zeus

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I wonder how the potential financiers intended for a PG rated Bioshock to make more money than an R rated one.

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ffviiifreak

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It will be good either way but it should've recieved more support for any direction.

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FarmFreshDX

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*SPOILERS MAY FOLLOW* This is sad. BioShock has more morality and thrills than 99% of the movies out there. I think people would greatly benefit from the moral dilemmas and psychological aspects that the game brought. That said, the whole "would you kindly" reveal would not have been nearly as original in a movie. In the game, you realized at that moment that you had done those things thinking they were a good idea too, much like Jack did since he was under mind control from the phrase. Aside from that, I'd have loved to see the plastic surgeon's story arc or the artist making the statues of corpses. @GodGundamNT1: If nobody cares, why is BioShock hailed as one of the deepest games in our time? If it's a Doom 3 ripoff, why are there no demons in it, a true cast of characters, and a completely different combat system? You, sir, are probably angry that the game was too deep for you, or that you couldn't blast your way through carelessly, or that the words were too big for you to understand.

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RamonTrojan74

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they need to make a bioshock movie!!!!!

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GodGundamNT1

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And no one cares, Biochoke was an overhyped wet Doom 3 rippoff, just watch the live action Doom movie and keep throwing water at the screen and you will have biochoke. Anyways the first game was mediocre, with a crappy predictable storyline, even Gundam Crossfire's storyline was better than biochoke, meanwhile on PC it was hyped as a Dx 10 game... and let me tell you, I played xbox 360, my rig with a Geforce 6800gt aka Nv40 and later with a Geforce GTS 250 aka G92b, not only does the game run in high quality settings on the 6800gt with 256MB and a single core Athlon XP 32bit only cpu but there is no difference other than enabling/forcing more useless AA/AF settings that overpowered cards deliver, you are better off playing it on x360 or PS3 because Dx 10 was and is a lie just like Dx 11, its only usefull for watching a benchmark that is just not impressive or as impressive as the 06 version.

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Tennies07

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Well I guess this will be one of those "what could have been" movie proposals. Never played the full games but from playing the demos I would've been extremely interested in seeing a movie adaptation especially in 3D, correction good 3D. Oh well maybe some day we'll a good BioShcok movie.

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SmileyJam

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A MOVIE?

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senorbusyman

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i dont care if the movie came out in 3d i just wish that the movie would be rated "R" which is the same rating as "M" for games.

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Richmaester6907

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Yay one less 3D piece of crap to oversaturate the market!

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juliano001

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Agree with syler4815162342. 18 years for a good film or please dont make one.

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syler4815162342

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Bioshock=horror movie must be for +18 people end of story

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Aletunda

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im glad he respects the content of the game and doesnt just make a crappy pg movie, 3D is a really new hard medium to work with and i dont no if this would be a good film concept to use it with

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jmace1

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I appreciate his refusal to maime the series. It shows a respect for the medium and mature games in general.

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liam82517

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R rating is for babies. NC17 is for real men!!!!!

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NeilCardiff

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How can you make a Bioshock movie thats suitable for kids? You might as well give it to Disney. They could make it an animation including the characters from Finding Nemo, even have songs and crap

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ColJendon

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I was right there with him until he said all that about 3D. I agree it must be rated R, and I really hope it will get made some day, but I swear, this 3D crap has got to stop.

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Adam_the_Nerd

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That sucks. R would have been nice. I mean, the game had an M-rating, right? So it only makes sense.

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E-i-N-e

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He does sound like the person to do the job properly. It wouldn't be easy making a multi-million dollar project based on a videogame.

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BloomerNYC

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good for him. the only way to make a successful bioshock film is to go all out. at the same time, video game films are known for failing so I can see how production companies would be hesitant to invest in this. I do believe however, that bioshock is such an original game and story that if the film was given a transformers-sized budget it could be really special. never gonna happen though.

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rht992

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thats a shame. sounded like he really wanted to give it his all and create something that would do the game proud

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Avatar image for deactivated-57fce817a4cf5
deactivated-57fce817a4cf5

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Why spend millions to make a movie of a game which cost millions to make in the first place. I mean, the games are always better anyway! (I mean films of games of course, not games of films)

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NuclearTactics

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but will a good movie of it be made!?!?!?!?!?!??? >:/

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BubbaEgge

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Well I guess I'm not bio-shocked...

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Land-0-Funk

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"Rob Schneider is the stapler!..rated PG-13!"

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amerxenos76uk

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Uwe Boll does alot better these days now that hes doin non video game movies. I believe his next project. is Auswitz: The Ultimate Concentration Camp Movie of all time. lets hope rockstar dont try and do a sandboxed game tie in

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amerxenos76uk

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the director of hellboy and pans labyrinth would have been a good director

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F-14-D_TOMCAT

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Am disapointed, I would have loved to see it on TANG ;D

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StJimmy15

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As disappointing as this is, its probably less disappointing than the actual movie would have been. Game movies are cool in theory but rarely come out good... Just as Uwe Boll.

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Timmy_Gwar

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Awwwwwwww! It's kind of sad that this wasn't done. The investors fears where completely debatable. It's as simple as "look at how much money the "Saw" films made". Plus, we don't have to see the injections, just have the actor/actress crouch facing away from the camera and pantomime the injection. There, I just saved you a harsh rating and a few bucks for special effects. Other than that an R rating doesn't mean that everyone below the proper age can't be considered a potential viewer. I bet the majority of the money made on R rated films is from teenagers so don't try and tell me that it's a massive risk. So help me, if another stupid summer comedy with ice cube or Dwayne Johnson comes out instead of more movies like Bioshock then I will be angry...oh so angry!

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5cott

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Although it's sad to see, i'm really glad he's stood his ground and rejected the thought of appealing to the younger audience. It wouldn't of been bioshock film if it had. Instead, it would of been a film without the bioshock mechanics, but with the bioshock label creating probably a flop. Gratz to the director for not changing to the pressure on this one and one day, a real bioshock movie is made.

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thribs

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They should have a rating between R and PG-13, like the Brits.

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markh117

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@monson21502 your a sad little mad dude a sad little man. I can't say I am totally shocked by this, fair play to the director for walking away.

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deactivated-5f26ed7cf0697

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That's Hollywood for ya. PG-13 has been the bane in the industry for years, but studios WANT IT for the sole reason of making money, yet at the same time sacrificing content and sadly, to A larger extent....QUALITY.

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monson21502

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im sick of no rated r movies anymore. these actresses get payed millions of dollar and i dont get to see their goods. but on cable tv i get to see 2 guys kisssing:? cmon now thats bs

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