Actor Ben Affleck arrives on the red carpet at the opening of the 5th Dubai International Film Festival In Dubai,United Arab Emirates.Thursday,Dec.11, 2008.(AP Photo/Nousha Salimi)
The line between movies and video games is quickly disappearing, and Ben Affleck is here to blur it even further.
Earlier this summer it was learned that Affleck will be directing and starring in "Argo," about a real-life top-secret mission to smuggle Americans out of Iran. Now comes word that he's in talk to direct "Line of Sight" for producers Joel Silver and Andrew Rona, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The story, by Alex Heineman, involves "an elite commando squad transporting cargo while dealing with a global threat." The hook? The story is to be told from the POV of a first-person shooter, like a video game. And fittingly, the script was just given a once over by Peter O'Brien, the man who wrote "Halo: Reach" for Xbox 360.
It's actually kind of amazing that it's taken Hollywood so long to make a FPS movie. Each summer brings more and more films that look and feel like video games--how many times have you sat their narcotized by the brainless violence of a big-budget actioner, only to think, "I wonder when 'Battle: Los Angeles' will be available for Sega?'"
You may recall the great Roger Ebert last year inciting a firestorm of outrage when he headlined a column, "Video Games Can Never Be Art," a foolish declaration made just plain dumb by the man's refusal to play a modern video game. To his credit, upon reflection, he had the good sense to admit he had no place making such a claim if he wasn't going to engage that which he was attacking, in a follow-up piece hilariously titled "Okay, Kids, Play on My Lawn."
The mere fact that a man like Ebert wrote such a piece is proof that the hoof beats could be heard on the horizon. There's been no shortage of films based on video games, and there are even more video games inspired by films, at some point in the not-so-distant future it's inevitable that we'll be able to have an experience that so completely integrates the two art forms that will be impossible to say it's one over the other.
Fortunately, Affleck is of a generation that grew up watching the birth of the art form, playing Pong and Pac-Man and to this day huddling around the TV with a headset and a controller. And more importantly, the guy makes good movies.