Media News

"Pirates" maker to turn "BioShock" game into film

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Take-Two Interactive Software Inc TTWO.O said on Friday that "Pirates of the Caribbean" director Gore Verbinski will make a movie version of "BioShock," its hit video game about an underwater utopia gone disastrously wrong.

A screenshot from the hit video game "BioShock" about an underwater utopia gone disastrously wrong. REUTERS/Take-Two Interactive Software/Handout

The movie will be made by Universal Pictures, a unit of NBC Universal owned by General Electric Co GE.N, and John Logan, the screenwriter behind "Gladiator" and "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street," was in talks to pen the script, Take-Two said.

“Gore is an avid video gamer and true fan of ‘BioShock’. That was extremely important to us in deciding to move forward with this project,” Christoph Hartmann, president of Take-Two’s 2K Games label, said in a statement.

Take-Two did not disclose financial terms of the deal or other details, such as when the film would be released. The company is the target of a $2 billion takeover bid by rival game publisher Electronic Arts Inc ERTS.O.

Released last August for Microsoft Corp's MSFT.O Xbox 360 game console, "BioShock" won praise for its complex story, haunting art deco atmosphere and creepy characters such as Big Daddies and Little Sisters.

“BioShock” has sold more than 2 million copies and Take-Two is working on a sequel.

The “BioShock” movie deal is the latest sign of the growing importance of video games in popular culture.

Earlier this week, Take-Two said its “Grand Theft Auto 4” criminal action game racked up more than $500 million in global sales in its first week.

That handily topped Hollywood’s biggest film debut, Verbinski’s “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End”, which pulled in $406 million in global box office receipts in its first six days.

Microsoft made headlines when it signed "Lord of the Rings" director Peter Jackson to produce a movie adaptation of its hit "Halo" video game, but the project was put on hold in 2006 when financial backers Universal and 20th Century Fox, a unit of News Corp NWSa.N pulled out of the deal.