EXCLUSIVE: ‘World Of Warcraft’ Film Lands ‘Saving Private Ryan’ Writer, Says Sam Raimi

In a phone interview with “Drag Me To Hell” director Sam Raimi last week, MTV’s Eric Ditzian managed to sneak in a few questions about “Warcraft.” Among the revelations Raimi had to share was the news that “Saving Private Ryan” writer Robert Rodat will be tackling the “Warcraft” script as well (a subsequent call to Rodat’s agent confirmed this as true).

Raimi confirmed that the story, which had previously been believed to be an adaptation of the book “Arthas: Rise of the Lich King” after the IMDB listing changed (it has since changed back), will actually be an original effort based in the universe of the popular online role-playing game. “We would choose… something that encompasses lands and characters and storylines, and we would be true to it. But our story may or may not be about one of those central characters.”

The aim is to adapt the game, rather than a previously conceived story written within that world. “We want to be really faithful to the game,” Raimi said. “We would have our writer, Robert Rodat, really craft an original story within that world that feels like a ’World of WarCraft’ adventure. Only obviously it’s very different ’cause it’s expanded and translated into the world of a motion picture.”

Raimi understands that there’s a massive “Warcraft” fanbase out there, and a need to serve those fans as much as he serves the need to create a mass-marketable event film. The hope is that they’ll properly capture “the Horde and the Alliance and the mythology that takes place in the game, and the archetypes that the game presents. I think we would try and find touchstones within the game to make it accurate and true and choose one or some of the lands that are portrayed in the game with as much accuracy and authenticity as possible.”

Are you a “World of Warcraft” player? What are your hopes for this movie? Will Spider-Man director Sam Raimi be the filmmaker who finally gives the world a first-class video game adaptation? Would you agree that he has the best shot out of anyone so far?

We would choose one of those worlds and one of those legends. Something that encompasses lands and characters and storylines, and we would be true to it. But our story may or may not be about one of those central characters. They might be in the picture, those characters that these myths are told about, but they would be more supporting characters.

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