In our interview with Hideo Kojima, not only can we enjoy the author’s statements regarding the upcoming Death Stranding 2, his past at Konami and the future of Kojima Productions, but he has also dedicated a few words to the recently announced film adaptation of Death Stranding, Y has given me hope in the projectmuch more than I have in other upcoming productions based on video games.
Hideo Kojima affirms that he has received many offers from Hollywood, but that he has rejected them all because his intention “was never to make a blockbuster.” That was what made the Japanese creative connect with Alex Lebovicifrom Hammerstone Studios, a production company in charge of films as highly recommended and unique as Barbarian, which I think a movie that lives up to its title.
And the project gives me such a good feeling because Kojima’s thinking seems to coincide with what I think should be a good film adaptation, either movie or series, from a video game: “The failure of movie adaptations of games from a while ago has led to a lot of movies aimed at gamers, right? That’s why they look the same as a game. ” Hideo Kojima comments in our interview. “I don’t want the Death Stranding movie to be like that. Rather, I’m taking the approach of changing and evolving the world of Death Stranding in a way that suits the movie well. I made Death Stranding to be a game, and the games are games. There’s no need to make them into movies. So in a way, the Death Stranding movie takes a direction that no one has tried before with a movie adaptation of a game. I think what I need to do is something that inspires some of the people who see it to become creators in 10 or 20 years.”
I feel very identified with these words of Hideo Kojima, because it is what I have perceived through social networks, comments in the magazine or in my own environment. For a player, in general, a good film or series adaptation is one that is very faithful to the video game that you hold in such high esteem. For this reason, future projects such as The Last of Us series are being so well received in their latest trailers and previews, because they seek to satisfy this mass of public.
I made Death Stranding to be a game, and games are games. There is no need to turn them into movies.
I’m being honest: The Last of Us series does not attract my attention at all. Of course I am interested in seeing how the adaptation is made, what is the vision of a filmmaker like Craig Mazin and how Neil Druckmann behaves directing a different medium. But I only see scenes copied from those I’ve already seen in video games, sometimes using the same shots and the same dialogues that we’ve already experienced in a work that already drinks heavily from cinematographic language. Why do I want a series that shows me again almost the same thing that is already in the video game? Also, although with this I deviate a bit from the topic at hand, it is a game where player interaction is basic and necessary to fully enjoy the story (something that will be lost in the series).
I would have loved that The Last of Us series It would have been located in the same universe but focused on other characters or, even, in other temporal periods of the protagonists that up to now we do not know. I would be fascinated to take a look at those years of Joel after the events seen in the prologue of the game, his previous life before he met Ellie. That would have put it in context and would serve as support for the original work. On top of that, we would have the presence of Neil Druckmann himself, so we would enjoy another new piece of a world that would be connected between various media with the same thinking head in front.
Precisely, is what it seems that Hideo Kojima is pursuing with the film adaptation of Death Stranding. Without explosions, without big budgets: an author’s vision of an author’s video game. There is something Barbarian, to cite a film from the production company that will be in charge of this adaptation, that fascinates me: most of the story takes place only inside a house. Resources are scarce, but that is why the work with the script, the direction, the photography, the interpretation, etc., is so essential to create a work with personality. Imagine a movie set in the Death Stranding universe inside one of the shelters for these people who have been confined, unable to go outside, perhaps opening the door to a delivery man like Sam Bridges and little else. Just a stage in which to show through the actions and experiences of its occupants what is happening out there. That’s the kind of story I’d love to see, and I think it could be something like what we end up enjoying.
I know that I am a bit alone in this boat, and I fully understand the players who want to be respected and be completely faithful to the original work, to that video game that they love so much. But you can be faithful without repeating yourself, without using the same characters, without them being exactly the same or wearing the same color shirt. Its universe, its tone and general concept can be used, and that would not stop being something really faithful, but contributing something more.
I am very glad that Hideo Kojima has discarded the multimillion-dollar projects that Hollywood has proposed and has opted for an adaptation, a priori, much more restrained and with the intention of creating an auteur film. Because that is the spirit of the very creator of him and Death Stranding, and that is to be truly faithful to the work that you adapt.