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Arkham Horror: The Movie?


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#1 Tromdial

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 07:17 PM

Was wondering what forumers thought of this tidbit:

http://en.wikipedia....of_madness#Film

http://en.wikipedia....Future_projects

The difficulty seems to be backing and the prospects of their being an audience, but with an acclaimed director like Guillermo del Toro really, really, really wanting to do a Lovecraft film (just look at all the guys work and his input with the Lovecraft documentary, A Craft of Love), I wonder if FFG would ever have the interest of endorsing a film or series of film projects? My guess is once Pacific Rim becomes a summer blockbuster, del Toro may get the weight he needs to revive At the Mountains of Madness's development.

For  those interested in Lovecraft inspired films that do exist,

http://en.wikipedia...._and_television

The legendary John Carpenter directed two of my favorite Lovecraft inspired films: The Thing and In the Mouth of Madness (regrettably have never seen Prince of Darkness). Some other unmentioned films that have Lovecraftian tones in them are The Pirates of the Carribian sequels (2 & 3) and Altitude. Hellboy too is very Lovecraft inspired.

Again, FFG endorsing Lovecraft mythos would be a great hook to its board games. Furthermore, an inspired series of cartoon adaptations would be likewise incredible with casting of some of the AH characters, much similar to the direct to dvd Hellboy cartoons. With Arkham Horror, Mansions of Madness, Call of Cthulu LCG, and Elder Sign and a series of books, does anyone else think this is a marketable idea?



#2 Judgement Dave

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 09:59 PM

Been eagerly awaiting del Toro's ATMOM for many years now. Last I heard Prometheus had potentially thrown up some barriers to development due to similar setting (mountains) and plot points (mankinds origin). I could understand it causing problems if the target audience was the same as Weekend at Bernies 3 and Police Academy 27, but I'd actually like to think that fans of del Toro/Alien films would have enough sense to recognise them as different stories.

If it does come about, it'd be a great time for FFG to release a ATMOM-style expansion, if nothing else.

Given the style of game that AH is, I'm not sure that it'd be worth doing some form of sponsorship/endorsement. I'd think that too few people (who didn't already know of AH) would be interested in a game that can routinely last longer than the 2-3hr film…

Tromdial said:

For  those interested in Lovecraft inspired films that do exist,

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lovecraftian_horror#Movies_and_television

The legendary John Carpenter directed two of my favorite Lovecraft inspired films: The Thing and In the Mouth of Madness (regrettably have never seen Prince of Darkness). Some other unmentioned films that have Lovecraftian tones in them are The Pirates of the Carribian sequels (2 & 3) and Altitude. Hellboy too is very Lovecraft inspired.

Big omission on that wiki page and your list - 2011 saw the HPL Historical Society produce The Whisperer In The Darkness, filmed as it would have been if produced when the story was written. So unlike their silent Call of Cthulhu, this one's a black and white talky. See http://www.cthulhuli...erer/index.html for details.

And if you've not seen/heard the HPLHS productions then I'd also say try their Dark Adventure Radio Theatre audio productions of several HPL tales - again done as they may have been in the 20s/30s.

(BTW I'm UK based, so got hit by international postage, but still think the films/radioplays were well worth getting. If you're US-based you've really no excuse not to check them out.)



#3 Dr.Faust

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 10:51 PM

I would like to add 'The Resurrected' is an EXCELLENT version of 'The Case of Charles Dexter Ward' and (in my opinion) follows it a bit better than 'The Haunted Palace' (though Vincent Price in it is, as always,  a priceless addition). The thing about ATMOM and becoming a film is this--the lowest common denominator simply will not know what it is. And the title itself is, let's be honest, a bit on the campy side. Even it in and of itself, while very detailed, doesn't lend itself to a narrative of the sort Hollywood trusts. It's not a narrative but rather a very long expedition journal with the largest portion of it being scientific notes, rather than things actually happening until the end.

One could argue that you could have the film be focused around the growth of the Elder Things but even then, that isn't going to appeal to anyone but hardcore Lovecraft fans. I know Toro loves ATMOM but I think he should go with something a bit more accesible to the mainstream to whet their appetites first. Maybe, if he wants to do a more case-based set-up, making a film of 'The Shunned House' or 'Colour Out of Space' if he wants to dabble in the sci-fi aspect--which, given Pacific Rim (which, I honestly don't have high hopes for) it looks like he does. Lovecraft has tons of stories that lend themselves to film that, amazingly, no one has touched.

Unfortunately, I also have to agree that I don't see FFG putting up funding for any film, especially one that is not a direct linkage to their game. Maybe if the characters in the Elder Signs/Arkham Horror were the mains themselves they might be more willing. And really, some of them would make excellent characters that I would love to see adapted to film. There is hugely bad-ass potential for a lot of them to really become, if nothing else, cult-classic characters of the same level and appeal as Ash Williams.

My concern would be if they did make a Lovecaft film and it was thrown to a FAR less deserving and far more inept director that has no sense of subtetly for plot and true horror, like Eli Roth or Rob Zombie. Lovecraft is a delicate thing--if he is not handled properly it will explode in a mass of foul-smelling ichor and tentacles as the majority of films based on his stuff has proven.

There's no room in Hollywood for nerdy, cowardly and likeable main characters and the slow build-up of horror that Lovecraft demands.



#4 eiterorm

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 02:28 AM

I really don't think Lovecraft's stories are the best stories to base a movie on. A lot of Lovecraft's depictions are not well suited for portrayals in a movie. Take "The Music of Erich Zann" as an example. How do you recreate the following depictions in a film? I don't think you can.

"It was not that the sounds were hideous, for they were not; but that they held vibrations suggesting nothing on this globe of earth, and that at certain intervals they assumed a symphonic quality which I could hardly conceive as produced by one player."

"Yet when I looked from that highest of all gable windows, looked while the candles sputtered and the insane viol howled with the night-wind, I saw no city spread below, and no friendly lights gleaming from remembered streets, but only the blackness of space illimitable; unimagined space alive with motion and music, and having no semblance to anything on earth."

 

About Guillermo del Toro's movie project:

I really don't know what to make of this anymore. Last year he issued the following statement:

"I have been interviewed about this lately and wanted to post my two cents about this:

Prometheus started filming a while ago- right at the time we were in preproduction on PACIFIC RIM. The title itself gave me pause - knowing that ALIEN was heavily influenced by Lovecraft and his novella.

This time, decades later with the budget and place Ridley Scott occupied, I assumed the Greek metaphor alluded at the creation aspects of the HPL book. I believe I am right and if so, as a fan, I am delighted to see a new RS science fiction film, but this will probably mark a long pause -if not the demise- of ATMOM.

The sad part is- I have been pursuing ATMOM for over a decade now- and, well, fter Hellboy II two projects I dearly loved were not brought to fruition for me.

The good part is: One project did… And I am loving it and grateful for the blessings I have received.

Onwards."

The initial problem was that Universal Studios were very reluctant to fund an R rated (age 17 restricted) movie, because it would significantly restrict the audience, and thus the revenue. Then, when "Prometheus" was ready to be released, Universal completely backed out. Hollywood couldn't afford two such movies in the same decade, it would seem.

Now, on the other hand, Guillermo del Toro says in an interview that "At the Mountains of Madness" might still happen. I wouldn't get my hopes up, though. There has been a lot of back and forth about this movie project, so I wouldn't expect anything before it is in post-production.

But whatever happens with this movie, I sincerely hope Tom Cruise won't star in it. That would indeed be true horror, and not in a Lovecraftian way.

 

About FFG endorsing "At the Mountains of Madness":

I don't know FFG's economy, but I don't believe FFG can afford a significant endorsement of this movie. Besides, FFG makes a lot of other games, not just Lovecraftian themed ones.

 

About "The Pirates of the Caribbean" movies being Lovecraft-inspired:

How? Where? What? I really don't see it.



#5 Tromdial

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 06:05 AM

Everything said about Mountains seems reasonable. Do you think though FFG would ever back an Arkham Horror cartoon? I would honestly love to see it happen, and yes, Dr. Faust, I absolutely agree with the character potential. A series could even be done on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim or SyFy.

To Eiterorm,

http://en.wikipedia....f_the_Caribbean)#Design_and_appearance



#6 Dr.Faust

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 06:54 AM

Tromdial said:

Everything said about Mountains seems reasonable. Do you think though FFG would ever back an Arkham Horror cartoon? I would honestly love to see it happen, and yes, Dr. Faust, I absolutely agree with the character potential. A series could even be done on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim or SyFy

An animated series would be interesting, though difficult in my mind. Not because of something like how to make the plot happen or anything like that. It could easily be an anthology series, focusing on one of two of the characters a week as they face the various Ancient Ones and the like. My main question would be what animation style would they use? Inevitably, it would come down two choices; 3D would be ideal, especially in the veing of animation used in movies like 'Final Fantasy: Advent Children' or the like (which would probably be over budget since good 3D animation is VERY expensive and we all know SiFy seems to have issues putting out money for any 3D anything) or 2D animation which would inevitably fall into the faux-anime catergory. Now, don't get me wrong, I love anime, but it would have to be something very straightforward in terms of the look and feel. Something akin to Cowboy Bebop or even Miyazaki's work. There would be no room for that silly (and inexpensive) form of animation that is used in modern shounen animations like Naruto or Dragonball Z.

If someone was going to animate it, it would be a very serious undertaking. It would be amazing if they really tried but it would definitely be a costly project.

There is also the possibility of live work. Once again, there are plenty of anthology films that have tapped into Lovecraft with varying degrees of success (H.P. Lovecraft's Necronomicon leaps to mind), and could easily be put a channel like FX, especially given the popularity of American Horror Story. The main issue with a mainstream TV is that you are now dealing, once again, with the idea of the lowest common denominator and there would be the channel's need to cater to them.

Still, I suppose that Arkham Horror has enough room for serious violence and explosions to keep Bubba and Bessie satisfied. Once again, it would come down to how much love is put into the project. You would need a producer and director that know Lovecraft like the back of their hands. You would need a cast of actors that can ACT afraid and not just be pretty people that look like the art on the cards. The cast would be HUGE too, if you take into consideration things like Ally and Blight cards, not to mention places like the Silver Lodge, Cult of a Thousand and (here would be the fun one) Nyarlthotep and his many, many faces. If Arkham horror ever became a show it would have to be, first and above all, a passion project. Not a show about getting ratings but a serious endeavor to bring and create an entire world that is packed to the gills (heh) with Lovecraft.

Think 'Once Upon a Time' but with more tentacles.



#7 Tromdial

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 12:03 PM

Agreed, agreed!



#8 Tromdial

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 12:24 PM

I would prefer an animation but if they could pull off something like An American Horror Story would be wonderful too. I feel like a mere beggar most of all, just gimme something like The Thing or In the Mouth of Madness, and I will watch it a hundred times (yes, I probably almost have watched those two together that many times).



#9 Dr.Faust

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 02:09 PM

Unfortunately, for those of us that don't own production studios or haven't gotten rich and famous for having a scandalous video tape, we have to settle for begging. Honestly, though, this has given me an idea--maybe, when I got to Otakon this year, I'll bring my Arkham Horror game and cosplay as a few of the investigators--who knows? If it becomes a big enough thing and the demand is there, they might just do it. After all, Hollywood does like to exploit the fanboys of anything if it means a few extra bucks and if there is a sudden explosion in popularity for anything, a movie usually follows, whether it's good or not.



#10 Julia

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 10:26 PM

Dr.Faust said:

haven't gotten rich and famous for having a scandalous video tape

::laughter:: very true. The point is: you need to be rich and famous in order your tapes are scandalous, or it's the tape giving you richness and fame? Can't we write something like "50 shades of Arkham grey" (a primary school education should be enough to match the style of the original book) and buy Del Toro?


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#11 Dr.Faust

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Posted 02 March 2013 - 10:30 AM

And it would--be a tragic love story about Zoey Samara falling into kinky love with Harvey Walters?

Yeah, that's right. Let that image settle in there.



#12 CenturionCajun

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 06:46 PM

As has been covered previously in this thread the ATMOM film is in development Hell (at best) due to Hollywood simply not wanting to risk the money on something that isn't a sure thing. You can't really blame them after several high profile fanboy focused films like Scott Pilgrim vs. The World and Dredd flopped pretty hard. As long as Transformers and Twilight keep raking in a billion dollars every time they are released this won't be changing anytime soon.

Personally I would love to see HBO or AMC pick up the Mythos and make a serialized drama out of it. Think Boardwalk Empire meets the X-Files. That seems like our most likely hope at the moment. However, with the history of the Cthulu Mythos simmering in the background but never getting top billing it's probably a long shot.






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