Properties are optioned by movie studios all the time. It doesn't always mean that the property is going to be actively developed into a film. So, when Universal Pictures picked up the rights to turn arcade classic Asteroids into a blockbuster release--overseen by Lorenzo di Bonaventura, producer of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen and G.I. Joe: The Rise Of Cobra, we all had a good laugh about the futility of adapting the story-less game into a watchable film.
But neither logic nor reason stand in the way of exploiting/ruining every major franchise/property to come out of the '80s, and the result is that di Bonaventura is actively talking about the development of an Asteroids property with press outlets. It can't go away and vanish into a locked file cabinet in an executive's office forever if people keep asking him about it!
== TEASER ==But that's exactly what film site Coming Soon did when interviewing di Bonaventura about the release of the Angelina Jolie vehicle, Salt. And di Bonaventura is still thinking about how to turn the arcade game into a damn movie.
Says di Bonaventura:
Immediate reaction. Atari says Asteroids and di Bonaventura jumps at the chance. What did he see in the game that would make a successful producer jump at the prospect of making a movie?
"When I was called about the property - I was called because of what I'd done with 'Transformers' and 'G.I. Joe.' Atari reached out to me and said, 'We have Asteroids,' and I had an immediate reaction 'Yes.'
So then why call it Asteroids? Why does the movie need to be based on the arcade game? Atari doesn't own the right to rocks what float in space.
The reason was not because playing the game, we thought somehow that game could be translated into a movie, it can't.
Wait a minute... mythology.... you don't mean....
The word 'Asteroids' conotates a large-scale experience, so the challenge, which was great, was 'Okay, so how do you get a mythology that will support that?"
Done. Sold. Day one. Here's my $20. I need two tickets, in case the first one catches on fire, because this movie sounds too hot.
We really went after a mythology on the level of 'Star Wars' and we'll see if we succeeded or not but it's not a simple thing of the asteroids are going to hit the earth. We never come to earth.
The entire movie takes place in the asteroid field.
Oh, and di Bonaventura says that the movie will finally reveal who has been flying inside those spaceships that keeps you from destroying Asteroids. You'll get to see the aliens inside.
I'm going to the theater right now. Who else is with me? And by with me, I mean behind me.