Electronic Arts (EA) announced today that the feature film rights to its Need For Speed franchise have been acquired by DreamWorks Studios. A screenplay, written by "Real Steel" writer John Gatins' brother George Gatins, has already been completed and the studio will "fast-track" the project, beginning production on the movie early next year. DreamWorks stated that the screenplay, while based on the Need For Speed series, is not based on any one game. "Act of Valor" director Scott Waugh is attached to direct the flick, which EA will produce.
“I'm excited about getting back into the creative trenches with John and George Gatins and my partners at EA to bring to life an exhilarating script based on an epic video game that seems to have been made for the movies,” said Steven Spielberg, Dreamworks chairman.
The movie, as described by DreamWorks, will be a "fast-paced, high-octane film" that will reference car culture movies from the 70's. It was also stated that the movie will be "extremely" faithful to the spirit of the video games. DreamWorks promises hot cars, intense racing, and a story that "keeps players at the edge of their seat." The company also made it seem that they are planning on making Need For Speed into a multi-movie franchise.
“George, John, and EA brought a very compelling story to us which we believe is going to make a fun, cool movie franchise,” said Stacey Snider, CEO of DreamWorks. “With such a large following around the globe, we're excited to make a film that does justice to the popular underlying video game series.”
It sounds as if DreamWorks and EA are trying to scoop up fans of the "Fast and Furious" franchise, which is sorely in need of a re-imagining. Let's hope that the flick does resemble car movies from the 70's, instead of the glossy, bland, muscle-filled car movies of the past decade. To get an idea of how a Need For Speed movie might look, take a peek at this year's E3 trailer for the newest game in the series, Need For Speed Most Wanted. It looks more exciting than the movie will probably be: