Iconic filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola is asking the public to contribute $900,000 to aid him in his efforts to adapt his blockbuster war film “Apocalypse Now” into an interactive, psychological horror video game, according to a Kickstarter page set up on Wednesday.
The video game will transpose the player into the shoes of the U.S. army Captain Willard (protagonist of the 1979 film, played by Martin Sheen) who is sent on a secret mission to exterminate renegade Colonel Kurtz (played by Marlon Brando). Over $93,000 has already been raised for the project being developed by Coppola’s privately-held American Zoetrope film studio since it was announced Wednesday.
“Forty years ago, I set out to make a personal art picture that could hopefully influence generations of viewers for years to come. Today, I’m joined by new daredevils, a team who want to make an interactive version of ‘Apocalypse Now’, where you are Captain Benjamin Willard amidst the harsh backdrop of the Vietnam War,” Coppola said in a statement, according to Reuters.
The game, scheduled to be released in 2020, offers early contributors of the projects unique memorabilia from the movie and gives them the chance to work with the game developers that include some prominent names behind successful video game franchises like “Battlefield” and “Fallout: New Vegas.”
However, the game may be disappointing for those who are expecting a military shooter game such as “Battlefield” and “Call of Duty.”
“Some game industry executives told us we should license our film and make a shooter game or do a mobile version, clearly trading only on the iconic title of the film, but that’s the last thing I’d want to do,” Coppola says in a video talking about the new project, according to CNN money.
Making “Apocalypse Now,” which eventually won two Oscars for sound and cinematography and a best picture Golden Globe, was an uphill battle for Coppola. In a 1991 documentary film titled “Heart of Darkness: A Filmmaker’s Apocalypse,” Coppola recounted that making the film nearly crippled him financially due to varying production problems such as bad weather, actors’ health and other issues that delayed the film and increased its costs.
“‘Apocalypse Now’ almost broke me because it was so expensive…I had every nickel that I owned riding on a movie that was going rampantly over-budget and I was going to end up with the bill,” Coppola told CNN in 2009.
But with fans showing massive support for the film on Kickstarter, the $900,000 fund may be a good start for the huge costs needed to develop and market the video game.
The $900,000 Kickstarter fund is expected to provide only a portion of the huge costs needed to develop and market the video game, and is a good way to test the appetite for a product at an early stage, the development team said.