Eli Roth is set to direct a feature take on the 2K first-person shooter PC-console game Borderlands for Lionsgate. Production will begin later this year.
Borderlands is set in the distant future, in which four “Vault Hunters” travel to the distant planet Pandora to hunt down an alien vault, rumored to contain advanced alien technology. The hunters find themselves battling the local wildlife and bandit population, but ultimately attempt to stop the head of a private corporation army from reaching the vault first. Borderlands has sold more than 57 million units around the globe, including over 22M units of Borderlands 2. More than 1M players every month still play the 2012 entry Borderlands 2. The third installment, Borderlands 3, was released last September and has clocked 8M units WW in sales. The third game was honored with the award for Best Multiplayer Game at Gamescom.
Avi Arad and Ari Arad are producing Borderlands produce through their Arad Productions banner with Erik Feig through his Picturestart. He has shepherded the project and overseen development, including the latest draft of the screenplay by the two-time Emmy-winning screenwriter Craig Mazin. Lionsgate has been developing the project since 2015. EPs are Randy Pitchford, executive producer of the Borderlands video game franchise and founder of Gearbox Software, and Strauss Zelnick, chairman and CEO of Take-Two Interactive.
Roth said, “I’m so excited to dive into the world of Borderlands and I could not be doing it with a better script, producing team, and studio. I have a long, successful history with Lionsgate – I feel like we have grown up together and that everything in my directing career has led to a project of this scale and ambition. I look forward to bringing my own energy, ideas, and vision to the wild, fun, and endlessly creative world of the game. Randy Pitchford and everyone at Gearbox have been incredibly supportive of my ideas – it really feels like a perfect storm of creators coming together. We are out to make a new classic, one which the fans of the game will love, but also one which will find new audiences globally.”
“With Eli’s vision and Craig’s screenplay, we believe we have cracked the code on bringing the anarchic world of Borderlands to the big screen in a big way that will be a fresh, compelling and cinematic event for moviegoers and fans of the game,” said Lionsgate Motion Picture Group President Nathan Kahane.
“I’m incredibly proud we can bring this beloved video game to theaters for our fans around the world. Eli and Craig, already accomplished and remarkable visionaries, will be amazing stewards of Gearbox’s innovative Borderlands characters and stories,” said Pitchford.
James Myers is overseeing the project on behalf of Lionsgate. Emmy Yu is overseeing the film for Arad Productions. Lucy Kitada will oversee the project for Picturestart.
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