The Best Video Game Is Finally Becoming A Series

Gears of War will finally get a live-action film, as well as an animated series, both at Netflix.

By Vic Medina | Published

Hop on the Cole Train people: the iconic video game Gears of War is coming to Netflix as a live-action feature film and an animated series. The streaming service made the announcement on Monday, to coincide with the 16th anniversary of the game’s release on Xbox. According to a report by The Hollywood Reporter, Netflix acquired the rights after a months-long bidding war, and will now partner with The Coalition, the Canadian game developer behind the highly-successful game series, to develop the live-action and animated projects.

Guardians of the Galaxy actor Dave Bautista has long been trying to make a Gears of War film, but it is not clear if his efforts are tied to the Netflix announcement.

First released on November 7, 2006 for the Xbox 360, Gears of War follows the battle between humanity and a reptile-like alien species known as the Locust Horde. Marcus Fenix, a soldier with a propensity for getting thrown in the brig, is the lead character in the series, as he and his troops fight the Locust on the planet of Sera, which has been colonized by humans until the creatures emerge from their underground hiding places. The resulting battle left the planet devastated, but Fenix and his Delta Squad are determined to fight through the planet’s city ruins in last-ditch effort to save humanity.

Subsequent games focused on the aftermath of battle from previous games, including the introduction of the Lambent, a mutated version of the Locust. Spinoffs involving supporting characters (and even Marcus’ grown son) were later released.

The third-person shooter built an immediate fanbase with its high-octane gameplay, including deathmatch-like options, and its surprisingly riveting storyline. The Gears of War game series has become a billion-dollar franchise since its initial release, selling over 40 million copies of the original game, as well as its five sequels and spinoffs. Merchandising has also been popular, including a life-size Lancer Assault Rifle, a gun with chainsaw mounted to the bottom, that was a popular item for Gears cosplayers.

Gears of War

Netflix also teased the possibility of more Gears of War content, assuming the movie and series go over well with demanding fans. No directors, producers, or actors have been tied to the projects just yet, although that will likely change soon.

There have been several attempts to make a Gears of War live-action film, with all attempts dying in the development stage. In 2007, New Line Cinema got close to getting a film made, complete with a $100 million budget and a completed script. However, the project stalled and eventually made its way to Universal Pictures. That effort stalled as well, when current Netflix film head Scott Stuber was once attached to make the film. To have his current studio finally nab the rights is likely a personal victory.

The announcement will no doubt set Gears of War fans speculating as to who should play Marcus in the live-action film, if Bautista is not attached. Considering the character’s bulky frame, gravely voice, and surly disposition, names like Gerard Butler and Dominic Purcell have been thrown about for years. Some of those actors may have aged out of the role after all this time, so a newcomer to the role isn’t out of the question.