Adaptations can be tricky. On one hand, it’s hard for creators surprise the audience when they’re already familiar with the story being told, especially if that story already unfolded in another visual medium. But if any changes are made, they risk alienating longtime fans who might feel the original property is being disrespected. Regardless, the producers behind Amazon’s Fallout series are trying their luck with the latter approach. During a recent podcast appearance, Bethesda director Todd Howard confirmed that the upcoming show won’t adapt a single entry from the original video game franchise. Instead, it will tell an all-new story set in the same universe.
Howard previously said that before Amazon came along, Bethesda spent more than 10 years turning down requests from various Hollywood power brokers to adapt Fallout into a movie or a TV series. However, it sounds like those filmmakers were only interested in rehashing stories that already existed. So when the offer expand the games’ lore with a fresh storyline came along, Howard was a lot more receptive.
“When people wanted to make it a movie, they wanted to tell the story of Fallout 3 or tell the story of Fallout 4,” said Howard. “For this, it was ‘Let’s do something that exists in the world of Fallout.’ It’s not retelling a game’s story. It’s basically an area of the map. Let’s tell a story here that fits in the world we built and doesn’t break any of the rules. It can reference things in the games, but isn’t a retelling of the games. It exists in the same world, but it’s its own unique thing, so it adds to it. While also, people who haven’t played the games, who can’t experience how crazy cool Fallout is, can watch the series.”
Last month, Amazon released the first official still image from Fallout, teasing that Vault 33 (a key location from the original games) plays a major role in the upcoming story. Whether introducing new characters and story beats will work out in the show’s favor remains to be seen. But if it doesn’t, Amazon can always apply these lessons to other video game adaptations currently in the works, including Horizon and God of War.
Amazon still hasn’t announced a release date for Fallout.
Do you think Amazon is taking the right approach for the series? Let us know in the comment section below!
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