Deadpool 2 director David Leitch is also directing the upcoming movie based on The Division that will star Jake Gyllenhaal and Jessica Chastain. He’s now shared some information on how the film is progressing, and it sounds like good news for people who want to see the franchise move to the big screen.
He told Collider that he and his producers are “aggressively moving forward” with the movie. Right now, they are still developing a script and looking for writers, so it’s still early days. But Leitch and company are passionate about making it happen.
“We’re all fired up to do it, but it’s just getting on the same page… It could be [in the immediate future],” Leitch said about when the movie might happen. “I like the idea of working with Jake [Gyllenhaal] and Jessica [Chastain] and that’s really interesting to me, so who wouldn’t want to aggressively move forward and find a point of view on it and dig in?”
In January 2017, Ubisoft announced that writer Stephen Gaghan, who won an Oscar for Traffic and also wrote Call of Duty: Ghosts, was attached to write The Division. However, Leitch’s comments about still needing to find a writer suggest that Gaghan might have dropped out. Gaghan was also announced as The Division movie’s director, but that is no longer true.
Asked what drew him to The Division, Leitch said it was the world that Ubisoft created.
“I think the world that those artists created is really compelling, obviously for people who love the game but for people who even–just a cursory look at the artwork and the immersive quality, it’s pretty amazing,” he said. “I think it also asks some interesting questions about society and putting people in those interesting positions. For me, I thought that was a cool playground.”
The Division, like all other video game movies, faces something of an uphill battle given that video game movies have a history of being mediocre or worse. Collider asked Leitch if he was nervous about the so-called “video game movie curse.”
“I mean, yes and no,” he said. “They’re two different experiences. Obviously the video game you’re telling your own story and it’s so active, and cinema is all about one person’s point of view guiding a story, you’re telling a story. I think sometimes those things are in conflict, but on a project like The Division again it’s like there’s these bigger themes in there that you can pull one out and attach some great characters to and you can have a compelling story, and also given the trappings of the world that people love, I think you can deliver a good movie.”
There is no word yet on the story for The Division movie, when it will start filming, or when it will come out. Ubisoft’s latest video game movie was Assassin’s Creed, which starred Michael Fassbender and opened in December 2016. It made more than $ 240 million at the global box office, according to Box Office Mojo; a sequel is reportedly on the way.
As for Leitch, he co-directed John Wick and then solo directed the Charlize Theron movie Atomic Blonde. Deadpool 2 was his latest directorial effort.
As for The Division game franchise, The Division 2 is on the way and will be discussed further at E3 2018 next month in Los Angeles. The first game was set in a post-apocalyptic Manhattan and was a big commercial success for Ubisoft.