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Oliver never got made and is now going to be a comic. What are the chances of a company like Boom Studios adapting your prequel treatments into a comic series?

Oh snap, that is actually a really good idea! I gotta call my agent.

Another film adaptation you were a part of early on was a big screen adaptation of World of Warcraft. I’m sure it seems obvious that you’d be the guy to get many video game adaptation offers, why did you try to take on Warcraft?

I was a huge fan of Warcraft from the very first game and was in a serious hardcore raiding guild in World of Warcraft for way too long – seriously, that game can be like having a second job – and since everything Blizzard does is imbued with such great narrative and worldbuilding I always thought there was huge potential for a movie in that universe. I was hassling my agents to look into the rights long before it got set up at Legendary. Back then I was still something of a baby writer so the chances of me getting that job were slim, but as luck would have it it was around the same time that I sold The Book of Eli to Warner Bros, which raised my profile immensely and gave me the opportunity to go in and pitch on it. I wound up getting that job and wrote the first two drafts, which were different takes on the same basic story idea. Then Sam Raimi came on, and as is often the case when a director boards a project, it went in a different direction.

world of warcraft

Your ideas for the Warcraft movie were gone when Sam Raimi came on board to direct the film, which was before Duncan Jones actually made the movie. So I’m assuming the story you were working on was very different. What did it involve?

I don’t know what Sam did with the version he developed, but mine was basically set around the central conflict between the Orcs and the Humans. There are so many stories to tell in the Warcraft universe but that conflict is really at the heart of everything so it made sense to me that that be the foundation of the versions I wrote. It was a really hard movie to write in that you have to introduce this massive, original, and very deep mythology to a worldwide audience that you have to assume knows nothing about Warcraft, while also appealing to players of the games who know every little detail and want an experience that’s authentic. In the end I think I did a farily good job of balancing those things. There were a lot of really fun little Easter eggs in my versions that maybe two or three people at each showing of the film would have recognized.

What do you think of the pitch of seeing the story play out from both points of view, the humans and the orcs?

I think that approach makes perfect sense, it’s the way I approached it when I was working on it. As soon as you start thinking about the Humans as the good guys and the Orcs as the bad guys you’re on the wrong track. It’s not as simple as that. It’s always been a story with two sides to it.

Starcraft

I’ve heard rumors you have worked with Blizzard on something else, possibly a Diablo or Starcraft project. Any truth to these rumblings?

I’ve always had a great relationship with Blizzard, I absolutely love those guys, so all kinds of opportunities have come up over the years. I wish I could say more but you never know when something might come back around again and then I’d regret having given something away! I will say this – if they ever need someone to help them figure out an Overwatch movie, they know where to find me.

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