Shiloh Fernandez

Hollywood is ready to roll the dice on another board game adaptation. A bidding war has broken out over Monsterpocalypse, a robots-versus-monsters game adaptation that has Fede Alvarez on board to direct. If the concept reminds you a bit of Pacific Rim, you’re not the only one who’s noticed — an earlier version of the project stalled after Guillermo del Toro’s jaegers and kaiju stomped all over theaters in 2013.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Warner Bros., DreamWorks, and Sony are all fighting to acquire the Monsterpocalypse movie, and a fourth contender may also be on the way. A Monsterpocalypse movie was originally put into development around 2010 with Tim Burton directing and John August (Big Fish) writing, but was scrapped because it was too similar to Pacific Rim. The new version of the package is said to be radically different and less Pacific Rim-y, though it still pits humans against monsters.

In addition to directing, Alvarez will also write Monsterpocalypse with Rodo Sayagues. The Uruguyan filmmaker made his feature directing debut with 2013’s Evil Dead remake, after gaining attention for Panic Attack! and other short films. His sophomore effort, Don’t Breathe, premiered at the South by Southwest Film Festival this spring to strong reviews.

Here’s how Privateer Press describes their Monsterpocalypse board game:

Monsterpocalypse is a fast-moving, action-packed strategy game played with high-quality pre-painted miniatures portraying the most fearsome giant monsters on Earth! Each battle takes place in a city that you and your opponent construct by placing buildings on a city map. Players choose their forces from their respective collections of figures and then battle one another with giant monsters and supporting units such as tanks, flying vehicles, and all manner of terrifying creatures. Charge your monster into the city to fight for supremacy, and be the last monster standing!

It’s a solid (if familiar) premise and an even better title. And since this doesn’t seem to be the kind of property that comes with a super complicated mythology, it sounds like Alvarez will have more than enough room to make the project his own. The director definitely knows his way around large-scale destruction, as you can see in his Panic Attack! short below:

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