Bandai Namco is developing a live-action Pac-Man film, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The Japanese publisher has reportedly tapped Wayfarer Studios, best known for its work on 2019's Five Feet Apart, to produce the project. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the film was pitched by Sonic the Hedgehog producer Chuck Williams. The movie does not have a release date yet and Bandai Namco could decide not to move forward with the project. That said, the involvement of Williams says a lot about the company's aspirations.
The humble video game movie tends to get it from all sides. Critics turn up their noses and gaming nerds are often equally hard to please, albeit on very different points of principle. Kids are perhaps the most forgiving demographic for the video game film, which is why the belated Sonic the Hedgehog film franchise has done well to squarely target them. It gets the job done, perhaps a little too thoroughly at more than two hours in length. Many of the best video game adaptations succeed by making it all a bit of a joke.
"It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done," Sydney Carton thinks on his way to the guillotine. That far better thing is dying tragically, for many reasons: to save an innocent man, to fulfill his own redemption, and--of course--to make us cry at the end of A Tale of Two Cities. The death scene is one of the sharpest tools in a writer's toolbox, as likely to wound the writer themself as the reader--for if a well-written death scene can be thrilling, terrifying, or filled with despair, so can a poorly written one be bathetic, stupid, and eye-rolling. But let's not talk about those. Let's talk about the good ones, the deathless death scenes. We've assembled the 50 greatest fictional deaths of all time--the most moving, most funny, most shocking, most influential scenes from books, movies, TV, theater, video games, and more. Spoilers abound: It's a list that spans nearly 2,500 years of human culture, from Athens to A24, and is so competitive that even poor Sydney Carton and his famous last words couldn't make it. We've also talked to many of the creators behind the scenes on our list to ask them how they wrote them, why they killed off characters we loved, what makes a great death scene, and what final moments from fiction have stuck with them all their lives. We've made this list during a pandemic, as real-life death has stalked us all, more tangible than ever. After all, one of the many things art can do is to help us navigate the pitfalls of life, and there's no deeper pitfall than the final one. Here are the scenes that have shown us all what the big goodbye might actually be like, when it comes. Imagine Imagine the horror in Athens' Theatre of Dionysus at the premiere of Medea, as the audience heard the desperate cries of Medea's two sons while she ruthlessly stabbed them to death.
Back in 1982, computers meant one of two things in the popular imagination. Either they were room-sized machines used by the military-industrial complex to crunch data on stuff like nuclear wars and stock markets, or they were fridge-sized arcade games such as Space Invaders and Pac-Man. Kraftwerk were singing about home computers, but if you owned one at all, it was probably a Sinclair ZX81, which was only marginally more sophisticated than a calculator. And yet, that summer, cinemagoers were catapulted into the digital future. Few appreciated it at the time but with 40 years' hindsight, Steven Lisberger's sci-fi adventure Tron was the shape of things to come: in cinema, in real life, and in virtual life.
When the new teaser trailer for Avatar: The Way of Water--the next entry in James Cameron's CGI-heavy film franchise--came out, many viewers opined that the footage resembles a video game. As praise or pejorative, that comparison is a touch hyperbolic. Yet it signals, too, the perceived overlap between the video game and film industries, which have increasingly come to share technological, narrative, and visual approaches. Multiplex screens are nowadays laden with game-like images--exceptions exist, but a sense of green-screened unreality certainly abounds, whether you're watching an explosion-rich action film or a well-paced drama. Other ideas also flow freely across mediums: Games and movies alike have set their watches to Matrix-style "bullet time" effects; both forms have shaken up their cameras à la Bourne; and as virtuosic a filmmaker as Brian De Palma has marveled at how certain games have deftly repurposed cinema's roaming, first-person point-of-view shots.
The Oscar-winning studio has produced visual effects for movies like "Titantic," "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" and several Marvel films. To create the photorealistic characters seen in "The Quarry," it used the AI facial capture system Masquerade, which was developed to replicate Josh Brolin's likeness for his character Thanos in "Avengers: Infinity War." Masquerade was originally designed to do one thing: to take the performance from a head-mounted camera and translate it into a digital mesh that could then be rendered in a movie. For "The Quarry," the VFX team needed something that could track the movement and facial expressions of actors and create digital characters that could be edited in real time. So they built Masquerade 2.0.
It's not often I have a lot to say about a game's menu options, but I have to give credit where credit is due: "The Quarry's" UI is an impeccably tailored and delightful nostalgia trip. Slasher films saw their heyday in the late '70s and '80s, and Supermassive Games fully commits to that aesthetic. The starting screen menu mimics a chunky desktop from the early days of computer graphics. Each of the branching paths shaped by the player's choices -- the equivalent of the Butterfly Effect mechanic in "Until Dawn" -- is represented by a VHS tape with a unique cover in the style of vintage horror movie posters. Several have stickers slapped on top: price tags and reminders to "Be kind and rewind!"
On July 3rd, Tom Cruise will be sixty years old. The fact that he does not look it, at all, even in IMAX closeups so tight you can study the grain of his tooth enamel, adds a note of cognitive dissonance to "Top Gun: Maverick," the long-aborning sequel in which he's called back to mentor a squad of younger stick-jockeys who address him as Pops and Old-Timer until he wins their respect in the air. Even for a physical performer like Cruise, sixty is no longer an expiration date. Mick Jagger blew by that milestone in 2003, as did Sylvester Stallone in 2006, and, thanks presumably to healthy habits and/or medical technology dreamt of only by science fiction, they're both still out there, doing a version of the kind of thing they've always done. But the level of performance expected of a Rolling Stone or an Expendable is one thing, and the work that Tom Cruise appears to demand of himself is something else entirely.
TL;DR: For Star Wars Day, GameStop is offering a bunch of games from the fan-favorite franchise at heavily discounted prices for a limited time. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order Deluxe Edition -- $14.99 $69.99 (save $55) Star Wars Battlefront II -- $4.99 $19.99 (save $15) Star Wars: Squadrons -- $14.99 $19.99 (save $5) May the fourth be with you. Come on, we had to say it at least once -- it's Star Wars Day, after all. And you know very well what that means: Lots of Star Wars deals to shop. As you probably already knew, there are a lot of Star Wars video games out there, and some of the best ones in recent memory are on sale at GameStop for Star Wars Day.
Be forewarned that "Squadrons" is a game where players' enjoyment will hinge on how much effort they're willing to put into playing. If you delight in tinkering with settings and honing tactics (such as angling deflector shields and shunting power from the engines to the lasers then back to the engines) instead of simply zooming around in space blasting bad guys, you will embrace "Squadrons" like Chewbacca squeezing Han Solo. If your idea of a good time in the cockpit syncs more with the flying dynamics found in EA's "Star Wars: Battlefront 2," you're likely better off sticking to that title. "Squadrons" demands a lot from its players, but it also returns that love with an incredibly immersive starfighter experience.