Street Fighter, Resident Evil, Lara Croft and now…Pac-Man?

Pac Man

That’s what SlashFilm is saying.

Producer Avi Arad has  will be on hand at Namco’s 30th birthday for Pac-Man on June 15th (during E3) “to make an announcement about the worldwide premiere of his newest Pac-Man project.” Of couse, “Pac-Man project” doesn’t necessarily mean big screen movie, but what else could it be?

Arad is a Hollywood producer — that’s what he does. He develops movie and television properties. At very least, the press release announcing the upcoming announcement is supposed to point us in that direction. Recently Avad has been vocal about how “Hollywood will do for video games what it has done for comic-book superheroes”. Of course, there is no evidence to support this theory.

It would be easy to look at Arad’s credits and think the producer is a big deal, and it wouldn’t be hard to think he knows what he’s doing. A former chairman, CEO and the founder of Marvel Studios, he was credited as producer (or executive producer) on some of the great comic book movies: Spider-Man series, the Blade series, the X-Men series, Iron Man. His name has also been credited on the bad: Daredevil, Hulk, Elektra, the Fantastic Four films, Ghost RiderX-Men 3and Spider-Man 3.

Remember the glut of slasher flicks in the early ’80’s that sprung up after the surprise success of “Halloween” and “Friday the 13th”? What started as a trickle became a flood of cheesy camp (at best, and I’m being way generous here) and incomprehensible rubbish (at worst). Then everyone soured on the horror genre as a whole until “A Nightmare on Elm Street”, which proceeded to then beat the snot out of the genre yet again with mindless sequel after sequel.

We’re seeing it with comic book adaptations now, beginning with “X-Men” back in 2000 and slowly crescendoing to our current state of comic book/graphic novel/video game adaptorgasm (patent-pending). (I’m sure some of you can cite a turn-of-the-century movie prior to “X-Men” that started the trend, but you get my point.)

Hollywood’s insistence on drilling a good thing into the ground with endless sequels and prequels and tie-ins and reboots and “reimaginings” and WTFery is mind-spinningly tiresome and should not be at all surprising. In movements like this, eventually we bear witness to the last desperate grope of studios to pound milk out of its dead cash cow. It stands to reason: Not all of these movies can be hits, and the law of averages tell us most of them won’t be. The trend built on the initial successes will make that success a thing of the past. Ironic, don’t you think?

Hence, a Pac-Man movie. I’m not predicting the Apocalypse or anything, and I’m not pooh-poohing the rights of studios to fill a market need or for fanboys and fangirls to see their faves come to the big screen. I’m just saying, a Pac Man movie? Really? What the hell, Hollywood? To quote Slashfilm:

Even after announcements for upcoming movie adaptations of The Viewfinder Toy and Stretch Armstrong, I never actually believed that a Pac-Man movie would ever become a possibility. What would a Pac Man movie adaptation even be about? What would it involve? How would it even work?

What do you think? What could a Pac-Man movie possibly be about?