Last summer, we reported that action icon Dwayne Johnson is reuniting with director Brad Peyton and producer Beau Flynn for a big screen adaptation of the video game Rampage. The 1980s video game didn’t have much of a story behind it, as players controlled one of three massive monsters, a lizard called Lizzy, a werewolf named Ralph and an ape who goes by George, as they destroyed several major cities around the globe. Today we have confirmation from director Brad Peyton that all three monsters will be featured in the movie, but it will be much scarier than you think.
We first reported on this video game adaptation in June 2015, when Dwayne Johnson teamed up with Beau Flynn, and just a few months later, Brad Peyton came aboard. Rampage marks the third project for this trio, following Journey 2: The Mysterious Island and San Andreas. While doing press for his new horror-thriller Incarnate, in theaters December 2, Brad Peyton shed some new light on Rampage. Here’s what he had to say below, revealing that it’s still a monster movie.
“There’s the three, the lizard, the ape and the wolf, so we’re keeping it similar. With Rampage, we are using our love of the original game as our inspiration. It’s going to be a lot more emotional, a lot scarier and a lot more real than you’d expect. So you look at that original concept about a lab that affects these animals and makes them rampage, and that’s the nugget. If they called me tomorrow to do Call of Duty, I wouldn’t want to play any of the ‘Call of Duty’ games. I’d have to come up with something that deserves to be its own thing. That’s where a lot of these movies can go wrong… It’s a monster film, so the stuff that I did on Incarnate, stretching my muscles in the horror space helped. Obviously, it’s a much bigger movie and it’s meant for a broader audience, but there still horror elements, there’s still a monster movie at the core. And I get to work with Dwayne Johnson again, I’m so excited about it.”
Earlier this month, Warner Bros. has issued an April 20, 2018 release date for Rampage, which currently has that date all to itself, although it comes just a week after an untitled Universal monster reboot movie. Rampage was originally supposed to start filming at the end of this year, after Dwayne Johnson had wrapped on Fast & Furious 8. However, after Dwayne Johnson signed on to star in Jumanji, which is currently in production, filming on Rampage was pushed into 2017. Warner Bros. hasn’t revealed when exactly principal photography will begin on Rampage quite yet.
Brad Peyton will direct Rampage from a script that was originally written by Ryan Engle (Non-Stop), with Carlton Cuse (Lost, Colony) and Ryan Condal (Hercules) coming aboard to rewrite the script. While video game adaptations have never been box office blockbusters, that has quickly been changing. Warcraft became the highest-grossing video game adaptation with $433.5 million worldwide this year, although it floundered domestically, only making $47.2 million. There have only been two video game adaptations to crack $100 million domestic, Lara Croft’s Tomb Raider ($131.2 million) and The Angry Birds Movie ($107.5 million). It remains to be seen if Rampage can become a true box office hit, in both the foreign and domestic markets.