Gears of War Is Moving Forward At Netflix With One Of Marvel’s Best Now On Board

Netflix's Gears of War live-action feature is moving forward with Jon Spaihts, the writer of Doctor Strange and Dune on board for the adaptation.

By Lyndon Nicholas | Updated

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Video game adaptations like The Last of Us and The Witcher have received a ton of critical and commercial buzz since their releases, as mainstream audiences who may not have been in tune with video game culture are finally learning that some of them can provide quality storytelling on par with other mediums. Now, Netflix is doubling down on the trend and has enlisted the help of some A-list talent. According to an article from Variety, Netflix has tapped screenwriter Jon Spaihts for its upcoming film adaptation of the video game Gears of War.

Speaking to Variety about joining the franchise, Spaihts commended Gears of War as “one of the all-time great action games, with vivid characters, a beautifully designed world, and a combat system that drives home the lethality of war and the importance of standing by your squadmates.” Spaihts noted that the games already had a cinematic quality to them and that it was a franchise that “wants to be cinema.” The Coalition, the video game developer responsible for the adaptation, stated they were “thrilled” to bring on Spaihts and partner with Netflix, calling him “a master storyteller with a talent for creating epic, science-fiction universes.” 

Jon Spaihts has several film credits, including Prometheus, 2017’s reboot of The Mummy, the film adaptation of Frank Herbert’s novel Dune and its upcoming sequel Dune: Part Two, and even the MCU’s Doctor Strange. Spai\hts was recently nominated for an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for his work on Dune and is heralded as one of the premiere screenwriters in the science fiction genre. All of Spaihts’ films are heavily influenced by science fiction elements and have larger-than-life production, and provide a solid showcase for what Spaihts has to offer the Gears of War franchise as a screenwriter. 

This could be part of a continuing trend in television and film after the recent success of HBO’s adaptation of the PlayStation video game The Last of Us led by Pedro Pascal. Netflix is no stranger to this trend, with 2021’s pair of MOBA animated series DOTA: Dragon’s Blood and League of Legends: Arcane, each a successful adaptation of a beloved video game franchise. 

This will not be the first attempt at adapting Gears of War, as New Line Cinema had ordered the rights to a film adaptation back in 2007. The video game Gears of War was released by Epic Games on the Xbox 360 in 2006 and has since had several sequels, most recently 2019’s Gears 5.

brie larson gears of war
Gears of War 5

The Gears franchise initially revolved around the exploits of Delta Squad led by Sergeant Marcus Fenix, who faced off against an alien race called The Locust bent on the extinction of a politically divided human species. Unlike many shooters at the time, like Halo and Call of Duty, which took on a first-person approach, Gears of War was a third-person shooter, with the camera operating over the character’s shoulder.

It remains to be seen how much of the original and subsequent games will be adapted for the film, and, likely, much of the franchise’s plot will actually fall outside of the film. Netflix announced a partnership with The Coalition and its plans for adapting the franchise in November 2022. They plan on following up the live-action feature with an animated series, meaning that we could see one or more of the entries in the video game franchise adapted into content for the series. 

With a robust pool of games to draw from, there should certainly be enough to round out a film, a series, and more. Luckily for Gears of War fans, it seems Spaihts is up for the challenge.