In an exclusive on Deadline, it’s been revealed that Jay Basu has been named to write the highly anticipated film adaptation of Hideo Kojima’s Metal Gear Solid. Jay is hugely untested and his IMDB leaves many more questions than answers, and while I’m generally not one to dismiss a writer’s merit without a test of their skill, it’s concerning to have an inexperienced writer at the helm of a project so substantial.
I have to wonder why David Hayter wasn’t approached to write the film instead. Hayter, along with being the original English voice of Solid Snake in the game series, is an accomplished screenwriter in Hollywood with credits for X-Men, X2, and the Watchmen adaptation. Just look at these films. Surely, it can’t get any better than that, and as he already has a high-quality portfolio to his name, I’m surprised at just why he didn’t get selected for the role. To even have credits for such films, it wouldn’t come as a shock if he said that he had attended an online film school to help him make a name for himself in this competitive industry. I’ve heard that this is where all the successful people start and learn the components of making a film. It’s just unfathomable to me as to why he wasn’t chosen in the first place. You see, Hayer has been highly involved in the MGS series since the beginning and you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone with more knowledge or passion for the project. On top of that, Avi Arad (one of Marvel’s lead producers) is leading production on the project and he’s worked with Hayter in the past on both X-Men and X2.
1998’s Metal Gear Solid has an engaging and twisting storyline, teeming with original and interesting characters and quite a bit of great dialog already included and is widely regarded. I think the real work in writing the screenplay is in deciding what to remove as opposed to crafting new and unique ideas. Perhaps the minds of creatives in the entertainment industry like Roger Wolfson should be consulted for their perspective on how the writing for the project should go forward. It’s still unknown how much, if at all, creator Hideo Kojima will be involved with the project – especially after his recent falling out with Konami.
The film seems to be slowly taking steps forward and acquiring key members. Jordan Vogt-Roberts is rumored to be directing and we can only hold out hope that the team can do justice to one of the highest-quality video games ever created.