Comic-Con: Quint's got good news for DOOM fans!!!
Ahoy, squirts! Quint here with the first report since the Con closed its doors today. Today I saw two panels, which I'll fill you in on before backtracking and hitting the stuff I missed last night. First up is DOOM.
I had written DOOM off after all the word starting coming out on how there was no Hell, no Mars and no creatures from the games. If they cut out Hell and Mars and creatures, then they were obviously going for a PG-13. I figured why the hell call it DOOM? I had really written it off as yet another shitty video game adaptation.
However, at the panel today they revealed some surprises... Id Software has been involved since the beginning, the producers, filmmakers and stars all wanted to make a movie that respected the source material and the studio was willing to put it out R-rated.
Confirmed in the movie: MARS! IMPS! HELLKNIGHT! THE BARON! PINKY DEMONS! GORE!
This made me smile. They premiered the trailer and then showed a clip that truly won me over... I'll get to those after the tidbits of info gleaned from the panel featuring producers John Wells, Lorenzo DiBoneventura, Todd Hollenshead (Id CEO), Karl Urban and The Rock.
-Karl Urban is the main character, not The Rock, who plays Sarge. The Rock liked that character better.
-The Rock liked the character of Sarge better because he could explore his "darker side" and because his character "has a great twist at the end."
-Karl and The Rock both played the original DOOM as well as its sequels, especially DOOM 3.
-The Rock on the film: "It's unapologetic as hell, faithful and gory."
-The Demons and Monsters are based off of the creatures in DOOM 3.
-They recreated sets directly from the game, like corridors and labs and even made the computer screens in the movie have the same style as what's on the computer screens in the game.
-Why The Rock wanted to do the DOOM movie: "I realized I could shoot the BFG."
-All the Army guys are were trained by ex-British Army Vet with 25 years of extreme badassness.
-The BFG was huge, according to The Rock.
-Stan Winston created most of the monsters, with the creative team behind the movie deciding against overusing CG.
-The monsters are big, most between 6 and 9 feet tall (and these are practical effects).
-"The intensity of the game is in the movie," said The Rock. From minute 5 we're there. Non-stop train ride to Hell."
-The young screenwriter Dave Callaham is very protective of the game.
-Lorenzo on the plot: He wouldn't go into it much but he did say, "A team on Mars chasing real evil, bad things."
-When pressed about differences between the games and the movie, Lorenzo said that we'll see how the monsters came about (Maybe this means no hell? Not sure.) and the evil little buggers get a chance to fuck up the Earth. Interesting...
TRAILER & CLIP:
The trailer was really polished and sweet looking. I'd bet you'll see it very soon, either online or in theaters. The atmosphere looks very much like DOOM 3. The corridors are right out of the game with the steel grating and claustrophobic walls.
In the trailer we get to see zombies and glimpses of the rest of the creatures as well as The Rock firing the BFG at an Imp. The look of the blast and the sound of it could have been lifted straight out of the game. Overall it was pretty cool.
The clip was what got me. It was about 3 minutes and it was called FPS something or other and there is a reason for it. We were told before it played that the clip showed something that hasn't been done in film before... they're kind of right... this has been done (POV... DePalma and Carpenter specifically use it well), but not in the context in which they did it.
The clip begins with Karl Urban a little beat up, sitting on the floor with his back to a cabinet. There's a girl in the room with him. He falls and goes unconscious (at first I thought he had died) as the camera pushes into his eye. After a bright flash we're in Urban's POV. He gets to his feet, looks around the room. It's empty. No girl. He walks to a mirror and we see Urban (reflection), wiping a line of blood from his cheek. He locks and loads a gun and leaves the room.
This is where it really got me geeky. I love FPS (First Person Shooters) games and that love started with DOOM and Wolfenstein back in the day. So, it stands to reason that I loved the clip that followed because it was all done as a live action first person shooter.
The sounds, the score (temp, natch), the lighting and the sets were all straight out of the game. From the second he walks out the door, you hear the creatures and zombies. He comes upon the zombies first, taking them out with shots to the chest, then head. The gun is lower right screen the whole time. After a zombie or creature is shot, the gun ducks below frame and the reloading sound happens.
The camera movement, the strife moves... all looks great... a real live action video game sequence. It's pretty specific in the details... like the zombies are fairly easy to kill, while the Imps take a few more shots to kill and the big clawed fuckers take a lot of ammo... matter of fact, in the video, the first time we see one of these guys he gets about 5 seconds of ammo pumped into him before the gun tilts over and shoots the explosive tank next to it covering the demon in flames. The demon claws at itself as if trying to tear at the flames.
There are jump moments here that are great, like turning a corner, looking to one direction, seeing a blood-covered closed door, turning in the other direction and seeing nothing... walking down the corridor, then turning back to see a zombie right there. A quick shot from the shotgun (it changes from automatic rifle to shotgun about halfway through the scene) takes his head right off.
Most importantly the atmosphere survived. The scene shown was more actiony, but even here you can see how dark the corridors are, how the tight the space is...
I was really shocked. This panel completely turned me around. The whole movie might be bullshit, but this whole sequence was kick-ass... My favorite part... after shooting a ton of Imps and reloading, the camera is moving down a dark corridor. It pans casually to the left to see a vague shape and sends off one shot in a knee-jerk way. After a beat we see that the shape was Karl Urban's face. It was the reflection of the POV and there's a bullet mark on the steel or whatever the reflective surface was. I've done that a dozen times while playing. That made me smile.
The clip ended with one of the big fuckers swiping at us and hitting us. You hear Urban grunting and then he's knocked off the ledge (still all in POV). He grabs a grenade (looked more like a timed mine from the GoldenEye game), places it on the floor and rolls out of the way as the big fucker jumps down. The explosive goes off and the left hand blocks some of the exploding creature as it comes up to block the debris and blinding flash.
This was all about 3 minutes and Lorenzo said that it was only half of what the FPS sequence is.
If the whole movie had been shot like this it would have been very interesting, but would alienate a huge part of the audience. I love that they made this nod to the fans as well as showing a sequence uniquely. Maybe a certain videogame director can learn a thing or two from this bit, at least. They made a section feel and look like part of the game without editing in footage from DOOM 1 or 2.
Anyway, I'll leave you with a picture from the panel when they somehow started joking about The Rock and Karl Urban being gay lovers. The below pic is after Dwayne says, "Now he knows why they call me The Rock!"
I got tons more, so keep checking back, squirts! See ya' then!