Resting comfortably on its throne, as the best selling game ever, Half-Life has what Hollywood producers dream of. A best-selling title which enjoys critical acclaim, a feat which could be described as the Holy Grail of movie producers. The title could not miss out on the latest trend of turning video games to movies. The game's movie rights are currently doing the rounds in Hollywood and the entire status of the gaming industry may be judged by whether or not the game does get picked up.
It's true that game conversions to the big screen have not been as prolific and as successful as those originating from the comics world but if one title has the potential to change that, its Half-Life. As a game it combined exciting narrative with innovative gameplay and managed to create a dedicated following among gamers. As a movie it would be guaranteed an audience of gamers, the size of the investment on Hollywood's part will decide the rest. The Half-Life plot is also one which makes it particularly inviting to a big screen version. The change in Gordon Freeman from a scientist starting his job at the top secret Black Mesa research facility, to the unlikely hero, is pure Hollywood material.
The gaming industry has started to make serious money and it has widened its audience to a level which has caused the established powers to start paying attention. A possible movie version of the best-selling game and its consequent success or failure could play a big part in confirming gaming as a strong commercial force. Why should movies get all the merchandising deals while games and their creators miss out? If Hollywood does not pick up the movie rights it will probably restrict most gaming-to-movie conversions to low-end productions and miniscule budgets. This could also happen if Hollywood perceives the whole video game industry as a threat to its established domination of the entertainment business.
Judging by the latest surge of game inspired movies and the public's thirst to see such conversions however, it is very likely that a big budget movie will be produced, for the sake of the industry we will all pray that the movie will do the game justice.