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Uwe Boll

Uwe Boll: The Interview

Shakefire.com sat down with Uwe Boll, who is most known for his rather horrible video game to film adaptations, to talk about his upcoming film, Tunnel Rats. Surprisingly, this one isn't based off of a game, although there is a game based on the film in the works.

[Shakefire]: Why did you choose not to have a set script for the film?

[Uwe Boll]: The movie would be very intense and the actors are supposed to be in character in that they live what they feel. We wrote exactly down what happens in the movie, how they die and what happens in the tunnels and everything. But, I said, I won’t write down the dialogue, they have to develop that on their own. To get that going in that direction it was important for me that they go to boot camp with South African mercenaries to really learn that basic fear, to get that feeling of what is war and how I feel here. And all the people I picked all have grandparents like the grandfathers who were fighting in the Vietnam War and I think they developed their character out of their grandfathers.
[Shakefire]: Tunnel Rats won you the ‘Worst Director’ Razzie Award. How much of an honor was it to receive this award?
[Uwe Boll]: Yeah, I think they put Postal, Tunnel Rats and In the Name of the King together just to have three titles. I don’t know if you saw the movies but I think they are far away from being the worst movies of the year to be honest. Especially Tunnel Rats and Postal are definitely not that category. If somebody says Tunnel Rats and Postal are worst than Elecktra or Cat Woman or Indiana Jones 4 or something then I don’t really believe in the abilities of that person to judge what a good movie is.
[Shakefire]: You’re most known for your video game to film adaptations yet for this one, it’s reversed. How is the game in comparison to the film?
[Uwe Boll]: In a way, the movie turned out darker, harder, and more shocking as it was written off the paper. When I got the movie finalized, they said this is a very depressing, very, very good empty war movie and now we have a video game in that genre. So you have Black Hawk Down that they make a video game out of, which fits in a way. But I think Tunnel Rats is very depressing. It gets a little bit deeper. It makes more sense in that nobody wins in the war. The video game is kinda an extra that has nothing to do with the content of the movie. It has a lot to do with the movie because it’s the story of the movie. We have the same music, the same composer. In the end, there are a lot of parallels between the movie and the game but at the same time you can enjoy playing the game and have fun but don’t bring it directly in connection to the content of the movie. I think the content of the movie is an empty war movie.
[Shakefire]: You’ve stated that you don’t play video games yet you continue to make these films based on them. Why don’t you leave them alone and let someone who’s passionate about them make the film adaptations?
[Uwe Boll]: No, it’s not true. I play video games but I don’t play ongoing 4 hour a day video games. At the same time, it happened that even though Alone of the Dark and House of the Dead, from the critic point of view, are the worst movies I did, they made money and I got more investors. They told me that they like that I do horror movies but make horror movies based on video games and get more video games because we believe that these movies are easier to sell worldwide which is true. If you make a vampire movie or if you make BloodRayne it’s different. If you make BloodRayne, you sell it easier to Japan, to Middle East, to Thailand, to Russia, wherever. It’s definitely an advantage. As a producer/director, I don’t get money; it’s not falling from the sky. I have to acquire it. I have to talk with people, with business investors, and you need a good story.
[Shakefire]: You’ve had some drama with Michael Bay in the past. Any plans on seeing the recently released Transformers 2?
[Uwe Boll]: No, to be honest, I watched Terminator 4 and I’m a big Terminator fan basically. I thoroughly enjoyed it even if it was by far the weakest and Transformers I didn’t even watch the first one. I’m not into Hasbro toys running around; I don’t like those kinda movies.
[Shakefire]: Any plans to have another boxing match between you and your critics in the future?
[Uwe Boll]: No, I think it was one really big event we did in Vancouver and it was good to do and after Michael Bay didn’t want to box me, I don’t need other guys in the ring. But I’m shooting a boxing movie here in Croatia in the Second World War actually. So it’s a war movie and a boxing movie which is fun. We shot ten days of boxing and we have international world champions playing themselves.
[Shakefire]: What would you say to all the fans of these video games that say you’ve ruined them with your film adaptation?
[Uwe Boll]: I think that one thing the fans have put into account is that it’s tough to bring the games one-to-one on screen and certainly in my video game movies, you can say they’re not translated perfectly. On the other hand, you have to make a movie where everyone understands it; who have no clue that the movie is based on a video game. You have to solve it. It’s like a catch 22 to get all sides or all the people satisfied with something. That’s what I probably think about. You have good games, like Alone in the Dark part 4 was really good for example, and I tried to satisfy the fans of Alone of the Dark. But on the other hand, Atari was supposed to make the game, Alone in the Dark 5, based on my movie and they developed it but never finished it. Then the movie came out and there was no game. Two years later, they brought the new Alone in the Dark game out which was a horror in Central Park type game and we tried to make a movie out of it, Alone in the Dark part 2, which will hopefully come out in the US soon. It’s not so easy.
Matt Rodriguez
Interview by Matt Rodriguez
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