Halo news has been percolating since Comic-Con where District 9 director Neill Blomkamp and producer Peter Jackson opened up about their ill-fated attempt to bring Master Chief to the big screen in 2007.
In the other corner stands Stuart Beattie, a big Halo fan who penned a Halo script during the writers strike. With G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra behind the scribe, he’s begun shopping the script and already has a big catch eying the lure.
IESB.net is reporting multiple industry sources have confirmed that Steven Spielberg is actively negotiating to develop Beattie’s script into a big tentpole film with a $100+ million budget.
Spielberg’s ties to Microsoft and Bill Gates were evidenced back in June when he appeared on stage at E3 to help introduce the world to full body motion gaming in Project Natal. His success with Transformers and legend status would be, you would think, what Halo rights owner Microsoft would be looking for in a film partner.
Beattie’s script, based on Eric Nyland’s prequel novel Fall of Reach, serves as an introduction for the Master Chief character who does not become the lone Spartan warrior until the film’s closing scenes. It sets up two additional Halo films which would conclude roughly based on the events in Halo 3.
Before you discount Beattie’s qualification for the job, keep in mind he has read every Halo comic and played through all the games. He knows the lore forward and backward.
If Spielberg lands a deal with Microsoft then a different fear arises. Will we get the Jaws and Raiders of the Lost Ark Steven, or the Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and Transformers Steven? Big budget effects with Spielberg on board are a given, but in the case of Halo, millions of Xbox 360 Halo game owners are looking for something deeper than what Michael Bay brought to Transformers.
This story is obviously still developing but clearly the gears are in motion on a Halo movie again. Are you sad that Blomkamp and Jackson’s version isn’t being resurrected by someone else, or jazzed that Spielberg is now trying to get Beattie’s Halo off the ground?