A film based on the Saints Row video game series spent a little while in development. At one point, Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson was involved in the project, and before that Dwayne Johnson considered starring in the film. Now, a former executive producer on the video game adaptation has written a piece detailing what happened to the R-rated, Escape From New York-inspired movie.
Below, find out why the Saints Row movie didn’t happen.
This week marks the 10th anniversary of Saints Row, a popular, well-liked game comparable to Grand Theft Auto. The firstSaints Row game sold two million copies. Since then, there have been three other games released in the series. With a strong fanbase, the development of a Saints Row movie was inevitable. Over at Fandom, producer Nick Nunziata — the creator of CHUD.com and executive producer of Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark — explained why the film never materialized.
In short: the series’ developer and publisher, THQ, went bankrupt.
Nunziata wrote that the project, which involved producers Lloyd Levin (Watchmen) and Andrew Cosby (2 Guns), interested “huge directors” and “A-list stars were on the menu.” Their vision for Saints Row was Escape From New York but bigger and with the attitude of the video game series.
Originally, screenwriter Peter Aperlo‘s treatment had an original character entering this world through a reality show, described as “a sort of urban Survivor with real bullets.”
Aperlo was proud of everyone’s work. He conceded that, yes, what they were making was cartoony — and there’s nothing wrong with that — but it “had something to say.” The screenwriter and all involved had high hopes for the project.