We’re in the middle of a video game movie/TV show boom, which is giving us near-weekly excuses to point out that some video games make sense as movies—often because they’re plot-forward—and some video games don’t make sense as movies—often because they’re gameplay-forward. Today’s Sony’s aggressive Playstation Productions initiative has granted us both sides of that coin in the form of Horizon Zero Dawn and Gran Turismo adaptations.
The former, which recently got a sequel (actually they both recently got a sequel), is about a woman who hunts robot animals in a post-apocalyptic America, harvesting their bits to make armor or archery equipment. There’s also a TV-friendly conspiracy about how humanity was mostly wiped out and Earth was overrun by robot animals, so count this one in the Makes Sense As A TV Show column. Horizon Zero Dawn is currently in development for some kind of TV adaptation at Netflix, though Variety doesn’t say if it would be live-action or animation.
Meanwhile, in the How Is This A TV Show? column, we have iconic PlayStation racing franchise Gran Turismo (Italian for “Big Turismo”). Those games are about… a ghostly presence that gets one bad free car and then must prove themself by earning licenses in order to be eligible to buy better cars and compete in better races. More importantly, though, it’s about immaculately and emotionlessly recreating actual cars and car noises and car racetracks. It has about the same amount of narrative depth as a museum, if that works for you.
Variety says the Gran Turismo adaptation is in “early development” and hasn’t found a network/streaming service willing to take a chance on a show that is “about cars” in the same way that a cool Ferrari F40 screensaver is also “about cars.” We also don’t have any information about how a Gran Turismo series would work, but we have a pitch: Make it a period piece, set in 1997 when the first game came out, about professional race car drivers. No Fast And Furious or Need For Speed action, just serious adults driving old-school Imprezas and Skylines and marveling at how nice their cars look and sound.
Other Sony-related video game adaptations in the works include Peacock’s Twisted Metal, HBO’s Last Of Us, and Prime Video’s God Of War. That pretty much just leaves Hulu, which might have to start digging deeper in the barrel if it doesn’t want this Gran Turismo show. Jak And Daxter? Ape Escape? Syphon Filter? Those are fine video games!