‘Uncharted’ looks to get back on course with Seth Gordon at the helm

Seth Gordon is reportedly in talks to direct an adaptation of the video game "Uncharted: Drake's Fortune."
(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)

“Uncharted” has proved an unintentionally fitting name for the on-again, off-again film adaptation of the video game “Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune,” about a globe-trotting treasure hunter. After bouncing around Hollywood for years, the project has reportedly plotted a new course yet again, this time with Seth Gordon at the helm.

Deadline Hollywood reports that Sony Pictures Entertainment is negotiating with the “Horrible Bosses” director to take on the film, which is envisioned as a large-scale action movie about the swashbuckling adventurer Nathan Drake, a descendant of the famous explorer Sir Francis Drake. The latest version of the script is by David Guggenheim (“Safe House”).

“Uncharted” has been associated with a number of prominent filmmakers over the years, most notably “American Hustle” filmmaker David O. Russell. During an extended back and forth (and back and forth again) with Sony, Russell conceived his own vision for the film that diverged significantly from the game’s premise, emphasizing a family of antiquities thieves over a lone adventurer, and he and the studio parted ways in 2011. “Divergent” director Neil Burger was also attached at one point, but he exited in 2012.

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For Gordon, adapting a video game to the big screen would seem to be something of a return to his roots, at least at first glance -- his breakout documentary “The King of Kong” delved into the subculture of old-school arcade-game aficionados. On the other hand, making a film about video game culture isn’t the same as making a film based on a video game. (Even if it were, “Donkey Kong” and “Drake’s Fortune” were released more than 25 years apart, an eternity in video game time.)

Since “King of Kong,” Gordon has specialized in comedies such as “Identity Thief” and the aforementioned “Bosses,” so a big “Indiana Jones"-style adventure would represent a change of direction and tone.

Regardless, Gordon appears to be connecting to adventures with tech-ish overtones. He’s also scheduled to shoot a reboot of “War Games,” the Cold War movie about a young hacker who stumbles onto a military supercomputer and nearly sets off World War III because he thinks he’s playing a computer game.


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