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Death Stranding Movie: Kojima Productions, Barbarian’s Hammerstone Studios to work on adaptation

Death Stranding, Hideo Kojima’s genre-defying video game, is being turned into a movie. The acclaimed game director is teaming up with executive producer Alex Lebovici’s Hammerstone Studios – known for the recent Barbarian movie – to develop an adaptation of the said title. Marking Kojima Productions’ first feature film, it will introduce “new elements and characters” to the Death Stranding universe. Currently, there are no details on writers, directors or stars attached to the film, although the report mentions that it is “on the fast track, with development underway.” And the Death Stranding movie could potentially get a sequel as well, as Death Stranding 2 – for PS5 – is currently in the works at Kojima Productions.

“I couldn’t be more excited about this new partnership with Hammerstone Studios,” Kojima told Deadline. “This is a defining moment for the franchise and I’m really looking forward to working with them to bring Death Stranding to the big screen.” While the plot details of this new entry are still under wraps, the original 2019 game followed Sam Porter Bridges (Norman Reedus), a courier tasked with reconnecting the last survivors of a post-apocalyptic America. There’s a lot to unpack here, starting with an open doorway that connects to the land of the dead, from which hostile visitors visit the world of the living. Then there’s a baby in a bottle – or BB – who helps spot said tar-stricken BTs (enemies) so you can sneak around them while a mysterious beach is awash with dead, aquatic wildlife. However, much of the gameplay is centered around walking and delivering items, with long cutscenes acting as break points and offering context to the universe.

Death Stranding also had a great cast that offered both voice acting and motion capture. In addition to Reedus, the cast included Léa Seydoux as Fragile, Mads Mikkelsen as Clifford Unger, Oscar-winning director Guillermo del Toro as Deadman, Nicolas Winding Refn as Heartman, Margaret Qualley as Mama/Lockne, Troy Baker as Higgs and Tommie Earl Jenkins as Die Hardman. If the movie is going to incorporate some characters from the game, I hope some name and dialogue changes are tweaked so they don’t sound too corny for mainstream audiences – Die Hardman, for example. Also, the infamous line: “I’m fragile, but not that fragile.”

“We are thrilled and honored to have the opportunity to collaborate with the brilliant and iconic Hideo Kojima on his first film adaptation,” added Lebovici. “Unlike other big-budget tentpole video game adaptations, this will be something far more intimate and grounded. Our goal is to redefine what a video game adaptation could be when you have creative and artistic freedom. This film will be a authentic ‘Hideo Kojima’ production.” It’s funny that he says that since the creator of the Metal Gear series is notorious for plastering his name all over his projects.

Meanwhile, Kojima Productions is celebrating its seventh year anniversary, for which its main cast has released one video message, promising a brand new game in addition to Death Stranding 2 and some “visual projects.” The former could possibly be a reference to his collaboration with Xbox, while the latter could be the aforementioned film. “I hope to give you more information on all of these next year,” he said.

The director announced Death Stranding 2 last week, as part of The Game Awards 2022, with a trailer that he claims is full of hints for fans to discover. From the short footage, we can confirm that Fragile (Seydoux) has recovered from the post-timefall torture, Bridges (Reedus) has aged, and there’s a new guitar-grinding villain, presumably played by Baker, who also sang BB’s theme in the trailer . In an on-stage interview right after, Kojima confirmed that the COVID-19 pandemic caused him to rewrite the entire script for the sequel. Death Stranding 2 also adds Elle Fanning (The Great) and Shioli Kutsuna (Deadpool 2) to the cast.

There is currently no release window for the Death Stranding movie.

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