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Dead Island trailer rouses Hollywood

"Big-name directors" on the phone.

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Image credit: Eurogamer

That fantastic Dead Island video - which shows a reverse-time account of a young girl on a tropical holiday island being torn away from her parents, become a zombie and eventually be flung out of a window - has sent ripples across Hollywood.

"We had a couple of big-name directors come to us. One of the top directors in Hollywood sent a studio his link to the trailer and said he was interested in this, and the studio contacted us," Malte Wagner, business boss at publisher Koch Media/Deep Silver, told the LA Times blog.

"We've had a lot of inquiries, not only from Union but from other major players for film adaptation. The talks are very early and there's no deal whatsoever. Right now I'd say it boils down to three or four opportunities. Some are studios, not just bonders [financiers] like Union. We'd rather go with a big studio that can bring the creative side.

"There are different opinions of course in how to do this," he added. "The first is that you find a producer and then he brings in a creative team. The other is to find a director first and he'll bring people along. My feeling is we should find a director first."

Wagner said neither The Mummy producer Sean Daniel nor fanancier Union Entertainment had actually been in touch, despite rumours.

Dead Island is a videogame by Call of Juarez developer Techland. It as was originally announced in 2007, and only dredged up last week by publisher Deep Silver following a long silence. Dead Island will now be released late 2011 on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360.

"If we got involved with a movie we'd take a very different approach. We're really not going to make the game the foundation of the movie. We can't just sit down and expand it," said Wagner.

"One of the key reasons why I go to the cinema is to be immersed in the atmosphere and the setting of a different world that's still believable, and that's what we have with the game. You have an emotional attachment. Dead Island has that kind of story and that kind of presentation and I think viewers would want to bond with that world and enter it."

"This can be a good movie if it's done right, but you do have to see it as separate from the game. We're not going to go out and write a movie script based on the game," he reiterated. "You have too many limitations in the game you don't have with a movie.

"We all know that movies are not always what gamers want. Good games aren't good movies and good movies aren't good games. Look at Avatar."

Techland is also working on a third, modern-day Call of Juarez game subtitled The Cartel. Its Mexican focus has caused controversy in Mexico, where the powers that be are calling for the game to be banned.

That Dead Island trailer.

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