The Borderlands franchise for PlayStation, Xbox, and PC has dropped millions of digital guns into the hands of players and earned millions of dollars through the process of bringing over-the-top, comedic action to an alien wasteland. Lionsgate and 2K Games announced a partnership Friday to bring that same formula to a “tent-pole feature” film. Yes, this means Claptrap will be fully realized on the big screen.
The Borderlands franchise first dropped on the PS3, Xbox 360, and PC in 2009 and turned into a surprise breakout hit thanks to its irreverent humor and sci-fi western atmosphere full of monsters, robots, and loony characters, plus its four-player co-op gameplay. That successful blend curated by developer Gearbox Software also spawned Borderlands 2 in 2012, followed by Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel! in 2014, and the episodic Tales from the Borderlands in partnership with Telltale Games this year.
The movie version of Borderlands is being produced by Avi Arad and his son, Ari Arad. The pair are behind many of the Marvel Comics super hero films such as Iron Man, Spider-Man, The Amazing Spider-Man, X-Men, Ghost Rider and Blade.
— Borderlands (@Borderlands) August 28, 2015
Attempts at translating video games to film have largely met with failure, either through poor budgeting or due to the creative team not understanding the source material. There’s been a renewed effort to bring video games to film recently, though. Production for an Assassin’s Creed movie will kick off next week as fans got a first look at Michael Fassbender in his assassin’s garb yesterday. Meanwhile, a World of Warcraft movie is in the middle of post-production and even a Minecraft movie is in the works.
“We believe that we’ve brought together the right partners, the ideal creative team and the perfect property to launch a new motion picture tent-pole for a global audience,” said Lionsgate Motion Picture Group Co-Chairs Rob Friedman and Patrick Wachsberger. “Part of our strategy in entering the game space under Peter Levin has been to source new brands with built-in audiences that will translate into great films and television shows. The Borderlands games don’t pull any punches, and we’ll make the movie with the same in-your-face attitude that has made the series a blockbuster mega-franchise.”
“Our Borderlands franchise continues to grow in popularity, and we’ve assembled a team with the strengths needed to introduce this amazing cross-platform property to a whole new global audience,” said Take-Two Interactive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Strauss Zelnick. “Lionsgate has emerged as a major creative force in the global marketplace with an incredible portfolio of brands; our partners at Gearbox have pioneered and cultivated an iconic property; and Avi and Ari Arad are two of the most successful producers of action franchises. This alliance is ideally positioned to create a bold, provocative, no-holds-barred motion picture phenomenon that will delight Borderlands’ current legions of fans and captivate moviegoers around the world.”
“We’re thrilled to extend our partnership with Jon Feltheimer, Michael Burns, Rob, Patrick and the amazing team at Lionsgate and join forces with Take-Two and Gearbox on this incredible property,” said Avi and Ari Arad. “Borderlands has a unique story-driven narrative energy and rich multidimensional characters that position it to become a singular motion picture event.”
“Creating, developing and continuing to build the Borderlands franchise at Gearbox Software has been an incredible ride where the most powerful fuel to our engine has been the astonishing outpouring of love and devotion from the fans,” said Randy Pitchford, President and Co-Founder of Gearbox Software. “It is the passion of the fans driving the growing success of Borderlands that brought what I believe to be the best team of film producers, marketing and distribution experts in the world together to deliver the exciting story and unique characters of Borderlands to the big screen.”
[Images courtesy of 2K Games]