The ‘Uncharted’ Director Explains the Decision to Make a Prequel
It’s not an exaggeration to say that Uncharted fans have been looking forward to a movie adaptation of the blockbuster video game franchise for years. Heck, the rumors surrounding an Uncharted adaptation even predate our own movie archives; if you scroll all the way back, our first mention of the movie is five years ago, when David O. Russell and Mark Wahlberg had already departed from the project. So when Sony finally decided to move forward with the film, fans were more than a little confused to hear that it was Tom Holland who would be playing Nathan Drake. Why go the prequel route when there’s so much established canon to explore?
We’ve already heard Holland describe the Uncharted prequel as basically his brainchild, but now we have confirmation from director Shawn Levy that this was the case. In a recent interview with Nerdist (via Heroic Hollywood), Levy described sitting down with Holland and discussing how an Uncharted prequel could offer fans something they hadn’t already seen in the games:
[If] we do the origin of Drake, Tom Holland as younger Drake, that is something that we haven’t seen as the plot of game 1, 2, 3, 4. We’ve seen a snippet of an origin of Sully and Drake meeting in the past, but here’s maybe an opportunity to do a treasure-hunting action movie with attitude, with a protagonist — and a chapter of that protagonist’s life — that you can’t get for free, at home, by just playing the game… Hopefully, if we can get that right, what you’re doing is, you’re doing right by Uncharted, and you’re also giving an Indiana Jones-type franchise to an audience that didn’t grow up on Indiana Jones.
It seems strange to use Indiana Jones as a touchpoint for Uncharted when The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles are right there for the taking, but I digress. Whether you feel that Uncharted is a smart approach to a popular franchise or just the case of an actor cashing in some of his chips after making it big, Levy’s logic is actually pretty sound. I’ve long felt that video game adaptations need to be less literal in their approach and allow filmmakers to use the source material as a jumping off point, so maybe turning Uncharted into its own universe would allow it to break the video game curse. We’ll find out for sure if and when this movie actually ever gets made.