Is there such a thing as “too many zombies?” The answer is obviously yes if you yourself are trapped inside a mall with the damn things, but when it comes to Hollywood, they seem to be leaning toward the negative. It’s not surprising, given that AMC’s The Walking Dead is a monster hit, and zombie stories continue to shuffle or sprints across movies, TV, games, books, etc., with no signs of stopping anytime soon. You could say it’s an epidemic, and if that’s the case, somebody call the CDC because we’ve got another outbreak. The popular zombie video game series Dead Rising is on its way to becoming a feature film. For Crackle!
Now that most of you are muttering, “For what?” let me shoot down your first guess: no, it’s not a breakfast cereal. Although a zombie-themed breakfast cereal seems like a sure thing, so somebody should get on that. No, Crackle is Sony’s online network, basically a less familiar peer of Netflix or Hulu. It’s mostly just a streaming source of existing films and shows, but it has done some original content in the past, including Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee. Legendary Entertainment (Pacific Rim, Godzilla) sold the Dead Rising rights to Crackle, which will handle the movie’s U.S. premiere. After popping up on Crackle, the Dead Rising movie will later be available through DVD, VOD, and the other usual formats.
The first Dead Rising game was released in 2006 and put players in the role of Frank West, a photojournalist who winds up trapped inside a mall during a zombie outbreak — an undisguised tip of the hat to George Romero’s Dawn of the Dead — and finds himself up against not only the living dead, but some very human psychopaths and a secret conspiracy that’s behind it all. Since then the game has continued through two sequels, including Dead Rising 3, which came out last fall. While the storyline and characters have varied, the Dead Rising series’ core concept involves combining various objects into more effective zombie killers. Those combinations range from the straightforward — strapping chainsaws onto either end of a kayak paddle — to the ridiculous — combining diamonds and a flashlight to make a makeshift lightsaber.
As you might guess, the tone of the Dead Rising games tends toward the silly and tongue-in-cheek, so hopefully the movie won’t take itself too seriously. The story details provided by ComingSoon make it sound like just another generic zombie flick, but hopefully that won’t be the case.
Dead Rising takes place during a large-scale zombie outbreak. When a mandatory government vaccine fails to stop the infection from spreading, the four leads must evade infection while also pursuing the root of the epidemic, with all signs pointing to a government conspiracy. Politics, public paranoia, and media coverage play an important role in the story’s narrative.
Tim Carter, who was a producer on the Mortal Kombat: Legacy digital series, will be writing the Dead Rising movie, as well as producing it with his Contradiction Films partner Tomas Harlan. Lorenzo di Bonaventura (Transformers) is an executive producer on the project.