Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr Viber
Trending On Empire
The Big 2015 Movie Preview
The 50 Best Films Of 2014
Review Of The Year 2014
Subscribe to Empire!
Save up to 63%
Want To Be An Empire Journalist?
We're looking for reporters for the LFF
Movie News

Jon Voight On For Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them
Gemma Chan and Carmen Ejogo also cast in the Potter spin-off
More Movie News

Rockstar Games On Why Grand Theft Auto: The Movie Will Never Happen
'It's much easier to imagine GTA as a TV series...'

09 September 2013  |  Written by Ali Plumb  |  Source: The Guardian

submit to reddit

gta V game dan houser

Dan Houser is one of the co-founders of Rockstar Games, the gaming studio that's brought the world Red Dead Redemption, Max Payne 3, L.A. Noire and, of course, the Grand Theft Auto series. Speaking to The Guardian in a fascinating and in-depth piece about the company, Houser discussed the often-mooted idea of a Grand Theft Auto film spin-off.

"We've been offered, many times, and it's never appealed. The money's never been close to be worth risking one's crown jewels. Our small dabblings with Hollywood have always left us running back to games. The freedom we have to do what we want creatively is of enormous value. The second you go near Hollywood, people seem willing, or have been forced, to lose a lot of that control. That sort of amorphous 'that won't test well' attitude is exactly how we don't work. We've always tried to think of stuff that's innovative and new, and to go into a world where that's not encouraged would be horrible."

Remember that in GTA: San Andreas the word 'fuck' was spoken 365 times, in GTA: Vice City Stories Phil Collins almost gets assassinated as he sings 'In The Air Tonight' and the joyfully controversial disc jockey Lazlow Jones gets into all sorts of trouble in all the recent editions of the games. That is to say, this is not a franchise that feels it needs to dumb itself down.

"There's still plenty of kudos in doing a film, but you shouldn't ever do anything in your life for kudos," Houser adds. "It's much easier to imagine GTA as a TV series, as the form is closer, but I still think we'd be losing too much to ever actually do it. We've got this big open-world experience that's 100 hours long, and that gives players control over what they do, what they see, and how they see it. A world where you can do everything from rob a bank to take a yoga lesson to watch TV, all in your own time. How do you condense that into a two-hour or 12-hour experience where you take away the main things: player agency and freedom?"

"We love games and we think we've got something to say in games, and that games have plenty to say. So shouldn't we just continue doing that?"

Considering the previous big release in the GTA franchise, GTA IV, sold 631,000 copies in the UK alone on its first day of release - £40 times 631,000 = £25 million - there's no real reason why they shouldn't keep doing that. Grand Theft Auto V, the final GTA game to come out on Xbox 360 and PS3, is out on September 17, which may explain why no big name films are coming out that weekend... unless you count Diana and R.I.P.D. as big name films, of course. 

Have Your Say
To comment on this, and all articles, register for free or login now.

Indira Varma & More On For Game Of Thrones
Season Four adds a batch of new faces
Disney Re-Scales Pete's Dragon
UPDATE: David Lowery in talks to direct his script

Empire Meets Ridley Scott
The great director on The Martian, Blade Runner 2 and the Prometheus sequels

Jessica Chastain On The Martian
On becoming an astronaut and rescuing Matt Damon AGAIN

My Movie Life: Justin Kurzel
The Macbeth director on how Rocky changed his life and the worst ever date movie

Life On Mars: Trips To The Red Planet
A dozen of cinema's Martian misadventures

Hallowed Ground: Folk Horror In British Film
Ten tales from our island's dark past

All Hail Macbeth! The Scottish Play On Film
By the pricking of our thumbs, ten adaptations this way come(s)

10 Star Wars: The Force Awakens Toys You’ll Want To Own
Falcon quad copter? BB-8 Sphero? We’re already asking for pay raises…

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Empire print magazine

Delivered to your door – with exclusive subscriber only covers each month! Save money today and

Subscribe now!

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Empire digital magazine

Exclusive and enhanced content – get instant access via your iPad or Android device! Save money today and

Subscribe now!

Subscribe now and save up to 63%
Print, Digital & Package options available Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire Digital Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  Digital Edition  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)