Metal Gear, is the next video game franchise to get the Hollywood treatment. According to Deadline, director, Jordan Vogt-Roberts (Kong: Skull Island), has recently found his lead actor in Oscar Isaac. Isaac will be portraying the iconic video game character, Solid Snake under the Sony produced project.

What is Metal Gear?

The Metal Gear franchise was developed by Hideo Kojima under Konami. The first game of the franchise was released in 1987 for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). You played Solid Snake, an American soldier with a complicated origin. His missions consist of preventing terrorist threats from Foxhound, a special force unit gone rogue. Since the success, Kojima continued to be heavily involved with most of its sequels. The series has had 11 chronological games and 13 spin-offs.

Long-Awaited Project

Translating the game to the big screen has been in the works for seven years. The project has gone through countless redrafts, delays, and no main actor to take on the lead role. When news broke that Oscar Isaac will be dawning the bandana, mullet, and stealth suit, the project began to get conversations and gears turning (no pun intended) again.

The Oscar Treatment

Getting Isaac to sign on is huge for this project. They’ve got a big and rising name who’s starred in the Star Wars and the upcoming Dune. As of now, the only upcoming projects on the pipeline are Frances and The Godfather co-starring Jake Gyllenhaal, HBO’s Scenes From a Marriage co-starring Jessica Chastain, and the possible title role of Moon Knight in Marvel’s Moon Knight series on Disney+. The question now, “would his schedule delay the film again or would he be able to utilize a cardboard box and sneak out to complete filming”?

What to expect?

A couple of years back, Vogt-Roberts sat down with Collider’s Steven Weintraub, to describe what games in the franchise he’ll be using for reference. He answered, “Metal Gear Solid for the PlayStation one is certainly a seminal game for me and I think a big reference point in this. I also think there are elements of Snake Eater, which is Metal Gear Solid 3; that takes place back in the ‘60s. I think some of the things that people might not think about is we’re actually going back to the original Metal Gear and the sequel to that.” Vogt-Roberts explained that the dynamics on those games are “fundamentally important” to his take. It also gives him the opportunity to walk a fine line of making it for the general audience not familiar with the games and for fans of the series through his references.

The Curse of Video Game Movies

It’s always great to hear that a long-delayed project finally starts moving forward. However, today’s film industry still hasn’t created one positively received video game film. Though most gamers would consider films like Silent Hill, Angelina Jolie’s Tomb Raider, and 1995’s Mortal Kombat to be close to being good adaptations. But other films such as the Resident Evil franchise, The Prince of Persia, Assassin’s Creed, Warcraft, and the infamous Super Mario Brothers have failed to effectively translate the games to film through great storytelling, compelling characters, and embracing the source material. The results were the films receiving poor reviews and becoming box office bombs.

The First Good Video Game Movie?

Just because Hollywood hasn’t always done justice to video game movies, Metal Gear shouldn’t be counted out. Vogt-Roberts explains to Collider, “I think there’s a way to lean into all of the auditees and the quirks, and the idiosyncrasies that makeup Metal Gear. My job is to figure out how to protect those things, so not only the core fanbase is like, ‘that’s what I fell in love with, that’s what changed my life, that long ago’ but it’s also what the casual person says, ‘oh my god, I’ve never seen something like this’.” Sony seems to share the same sentiments with finally greenlighting the script by Derek Connolly (Jurassic World, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom), the casting of Oscar Isaac, and being produced by Avi Arad (Spider-Man franchise) and Peter Kang, executive producer overseeing the entire project.

The challenge that all would face would mainly be to stringing the game series into a cohesive narrative. Metal Gear is known to take so many left turns throughout it’s three-decade run. Like any spy or militaristic genre, characters associated with Solid Snake aren’t always what they perceive to be. That would even go for Solid Snake himself. The series loves to grow the character’s rich history with every installment. Think of him like X-Men’s Logan/Wolverine, only he doesn’t have the power to heal or claws. This soldier/spy has the best in combat, weapons, and stealth, but his own history isn’t even clear to himself.  It would also be quite a height for Isaac to portray when Metal Gear officially releases.

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