Sony makes a unique approach to adapting one of Playstation’s banner sports games by taking inspiration from a true event involving the game.
After such adaptations like the Uncharted movie or HBO’s wildly popular The Last of Us, Sony has a great list of titles from their Playstation library that could easily translate to the big screen. However, when it comes to sports games, there isn’t much of a narrative from which to draw source material. The closest option would likely be to do an adaptation of a story mode, like in Madden or Fight Night Champion. However, Sony would interestingly take a unique approach in bringing a game like Gran Turismo to life in movie theaters.
The second trailer for Gran Turismo has just dropped from Sony. And while a sports game would include real-life athletes or participants to be made playable for the gamers, it would be inevitable to draw from real life when adapting to a live-action film. The synopsis for the film reads, “Based on the true story of Jann Mardenborough, the film is the ultimate wish fulfillment tale of a teenage Gran Turismo player whose gaming skills won a series of Nissan competitions to become an actual professional racecar driver.”
Mardenborough is something of an icon within both the GT racing and video game communities, competing in the Nissan PlayStation GT Academy, which saw players starting behind a video game controller before eventually being put behind the wheel to compete in actual vehicles. In 2011, Mardenborough became the youngest winner, edging out a starting pool of 90,000 entrants.
Gran Turismo stars Archie Madekwe as Mardenborough, David Harbour as his trainer, Orlando Bloom as an executive and Darren Barnet as his rival. Gran Turismo is written by Jason Hall (American Sniper) and Zach Bailyn (King Richard). The cast also features Djimon Hounson (Black Adam), Darren Barnet (Never Have I Ever), Sang Heon Lee (XO Kitty), and former Spice Girl Geri Halliwell-Horner (Rainbow Woman).
The film comes from the prominently science-fiction director Neill Blomkamp, who had taken the project after his planned sequels for both Aliens and Robocop fell through. Blomkamp is known for his high-concept sci-fi films with social commentaries, which include District 9, Elysium, and Chappie.
Gran Turismo races into theaters on August 11.