Metal Gear Solid director provides update on the movie, mentions tone similarities with Kong: Skull Island

By Melvyn Tan on Feb 24, 2017

Image source: Kotaku
Image source: Kotaku

In case you didn't know (I didn't), Kong: Skull Island director Jordan Vogt-Roberts signed on to direct a movie adaptation of Hideo Kojima's Metal Gear Solid series back in 2014. IMDb lists him as "rumoured", but he confirmed with Slashfilm that he was "still involved and attached to direct it".

Plans for a Metal Gear Solid movie started all the way back in 2007, when Sony made the announcement. Even now, the project is still in its infancy. But when Collider spoke with Vogt-Roberts for an update on it, he had plenty of interesting things to say, including Kong: Skull Island's similarities to Metal Gear Solid.

"I actually think that when people see [Kong] they’ll realize like, ‘Oh tonally there are things that sort of line up with this’ where this can be incredibly serious and dark and intense or it can also be incredibly goofy and kind of take the piss out of itself and be slapstick at times, much like Metal Gear," he said. "Luckily there are amazing producers on it, but that’s a property that is so pure and important to my soul, because it’s something that I grew up on, that I would love to shepherd into the film that it needs to be. I think it’d be a massive film, I think it’d be an incredible film, but it needs to be done in a way that completely honors what Metal Gear is because it’s a classic and it’s a seminal work not just in video games, but in media.”

Another two movies he made comparisons with were Deadpool and Logan, though it wasn't the tone of those two superhero movies that he was referring to, but rather the budget and rating.

Image source: Collider
Image source: Collider

“I think that for me, I want to make the version of the movie that is most true to what it needs to be, so if that is a Deadpool or Logan route where you go with a smaller budget and you’re able to make it R, great. If you need to blow it out more and really get that bigger budget and go PG-13, I think it could exist in both avenues."

However, that doesn't mean that Vogt-Roberts will simply centre the movie on violence and other R-rated content.

"There are hyper-violent parts to Metal Gear but I would not necessarily call the hyper-violent part the core element of it versus like the tone and the voice and the philosophies that the characters exhibit. Those characters sort of are these walking philosophies, so I think nailing that part is far more important necessarily than thinking about the rating at this point, because right now we’re just trying to get the best version of it.”

As for the story, he said that the important goal was to nail "the voice" and "a story that makes sense". "...you’re dealing with decades and decades and decades of characters. You’re dealing with like okay how do Snake and Big Boss interact, how does Zero and all these other people interact with each other? How do you pick and choose the cyborg ninja and the sniper wolf and all these people and have them fit into a narrative that makes sense?”

How indeed. But the fact that Vogt-Roberts acknowledges the presence of the accumulated lore and story in Metal Gear and doesn't seem interested in cramming things into a rushed and incoherent mess inspires some confidence. The guy certainly sounds passionate about the project, saying that the franchise is the "most important... on the planet" to him and saying that he "will fight tooth and nail to make sure is done properly".

"Metal Gear Solid needs to be exactly what it needs to be, which is Metal Gear Solid.”  

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Melvyn Tan
About the Author
A secretly eccentric college student who mostly plays shooters on PC, although his gaming interests also extend to sneaking around in sizeable environments and slashing at things. He prefers his turn-based strategy games to involve miniatures and dice, and thinks that NieR: Automata's 2B is waifu material.
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