Valve: We Would Make Our Own Half Life Film Without Hollywood
When you leave a theater after watching a film adapted from a videogame, how times have you felt cheated? For me, I can honestly say every single instant. It seems like Gabe Newell, the co-founder of Valve, feels exactly the same way.
While having a conversation with PC Gamer, Newell admitted Hollywood would constantly approach his company and try to convince them to develop a film based off the first Half Life. According to him, the pitches that presented to his company were terrible; furthermore, the film executives were baffled onto why gamers had such a connection to the original story.
“Where we got into this direction was after Half-Life 1 had shipped. There was a whole bunch of meetings with people from Hollywood. Directors down there wanted to make a Half-Life movie and stuff, so they’d bring in a writer or some talent agency would bring in writers, and they would pitch us on their story. And their stories were just so bad. I mean, brutally, the worst. Not understanding what made the game a good game, or what made the property an interesting thing for people to be a fan of.”
Due to the poor propositions made by Hollywood, Newell feels if a Half-Life film is ever-to-be, then his company would develop the project and not rely on any outside interference.
“That’s when we started saying ‘Wow, the best thing we could ever do is to just not do this as a movie, or we’d have to make it ourselves.’ And I was like, ‘Make it ourselves? Well that’s impossible.’ But the Team Fortress 2 thing, the Meet The Team shorts, is us trying to explore that.”
Making a movie might seem easy, especially if you make high-production videogames; but reality says it’s not. Jordan Mechner, the man who wrote three of the Prince of Persia games, also penned the film adaption. According to critics and fans, one of the bigger problems of the PoP movie was the story, and how it was chaotic — and not in a good way. So even Valve’s passion for Half Life would be in the evident in a film adaption, it doesn’t automatically make it good.
If Newell is ever interested in the possibility of Half Life becoming a summer blockbuster, and at the same time please the fans of the series, he should just hold out until he or the company can have creative control. Instead of relying solely on outside studios. Plus, having there resources would be much more beneficial to them, rather than depending on yourself.