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Bioshock on hold

04.24.2009

Videogame fans were fairly thrilled when PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN director Gore Verbinski decided to make the acclaimed BIOSHOCK into a feature film -- after all, someone coming from such grand-scale special effects extravaganzas seemed perfect for adapting the brilliant game.

Verbinski's plans now appear to be in danger, and for the expected reason given today's climate: money. Universal decided $160 million was a bigger withdrawal than they wanted to take out of the bank, so the golden property is now in dry dock (despite Verbinski's track record of profitability from expensive epics).

The studio and filmmaker both vow the project won't become another "HALO situation" (that game adaptation was dumped due to ballooning price tag) and are considering options that might lower costs, like moving the production to somewhere with substantial tax incentives. But some of the staff has already been let go, so that could be later rather than sooner.

BIOSHOCK is set in the 1960s and follows a man whose plane crashes near the underwater art-deco city called Rapture. Built by a wealthy businessman as a sanctuary for brilliant scientists and artists to freely practice their crafts, Rapture fell into chaos as the inhabitants slowly became obsessed with genetic modification.

The videogame's sequel is due later this year.

Extra Tidbit: Verbinski backed away from a fourth PIRATES to focus on BIOSHOCK.
Source: Variety

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