Horror has been a big part of gaming for a long time, going all the way back to the first Texas Chainsaw video game.
That was a big dud, and director Tobe Hooper didn’t have to worry about 80’s technology blowing away his masterpiece of terror, but gaming has certainly gotten much scarier since then with Silent Hill, Dead Island, Slender, and more. Unfortunately, other than the Marble Hornets web series, which is an acclaimed adaptation of Slender, there hasn’t been much synergy with horror games and horror films.
Yes, we’ve had tons of Resident Evil movies, but no one’s going to put those in the same category of truly great horror films. At one point, George Romero was going to direct a Resident Evil film, and it definitely would have been interesting to see a real master of horror take on a horror game. Now Giant Freakin Robot tells us that John Carpenter has openly expressed interest in making a Dead Space movie.
Robot feels that Dead Space is “one of the most effective horror games of all time,” and as Carpenter said, “I maintain that Dead Space would just make a great movie because you have these people coming onto an abandoned, shut-down space ship and they have to start it up and something’s on board. It’s just great stuff. I would love to make Dead Space [into a film], I’ll tell you that right now. That one is ready made.”
While a lot of horror directors, and serious directors in general, would balk at adapting a video game, these days it’s clear that gaming can scare the hell out of you pretty effectively. At least one person told me he loves to play games like Silent Hill in the house with all the lights off, like watching a scary movie in the dark. So the mind boggles at a scary game being handled by a horror director who could really bring it to frightening life.
While to the best of our knowledge, which isn’t vast, there isn’t a Dead Space movie in development at the moment, perhaps there will be one soon, and not just because Carpenter expressed interest in it. We’re still waiting for a great video game movie, and progress has been made with the Halo and Marble Hornets web series, so perhaps once we get something cool on the big screen, they’ll get around to Dead Space, and we’ll finally have a killer horror film based on a video game. We can hope, can’t we?