While a Sonic The Hedgehog movie is in the works that could be the greatest thing ever or a total disaster (Jim Carey as Eggman could go either way), another lesser known video game is getting the Hollywood treatment. Reports indicate that Fox 21 has obtained the rights to Vampyr in order to make a television series based on the game. While details are still sketchy at this early stage, McG is confirmed to be directing and executive producing.
Vampyr, released in June of this year, certainly has a TV-worthy premise. It follows Jonathan Reid, a doctor in 1918 London, who suddenly finds himself a vampire. As a viral outbreak ravages London, Reid delves deeper into the supernatural side of the city, all the while torn between his thirst for blood and the Hippocratic Oath he swore to uphold.
The game received mostly positive-to-mixed reviews. A lot of the praise went towards the premise and character development, while criticism was aimed at the combat and technical side of the game. That being the case, one could argue that Vampyr is a fascinating story and setting held back by the need to conform to the conventions of video games. Perhaps the TV medium will allow it to better reach its potential.
There to help the story achieve that potential will be Joseph McGinty Nichol, better known as McG, a seasoned director and producer who worked on the Charlie's Angels movies and the show Nikita. Joining him will be Mary Viola and Corey Marsh of Wonderland Sound and Vision. DJ2 Entertainment's Dmitri Johnson and Stephan Bugaj are also involved, according to Deadline.
Making a video game into a non-interactive story is always a tricky task. There's a reason the history of video game movies is full of flops. Most games, or at least the popular ones Hollywood picks for movies, don't have characters or plots deep enough to carry a narrative. Being part of the story is what allows gamers to forgive clichés and plot holes. Taking away that agency often leads to soulless action-fests like the recent Tomb Raider or mountains of bland exposition like the one that buried Assassin's Creed. But maybe Vampyr is uniquely qualified to make for good television. If nothing else, it has to be better than that new Mega Man cartoon.