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  (Source: Paramount)
Hollywood worried gamers will ignore Iron Man

The target audience for summer blockbuster movies aren’t that different from blockbuster video games. Popcorn flicks feature fast-paced action with special effects, and hit games usually also feature intense action sequences with the latest graphical tricks. Perhaps for this reason, some Hollywood executives are sweating the release of Grand Theft Auto IV.

In particular, the Iron Man movie will hit screens at the end of this week in an environment now filled with people playing Grand Theft Auto IV. The target demographic for Iron Man shares much overlap with GTA IV, causing some concern for Hollywood.

According to the Financial Times, EA CEO John Riccitiello said that movie executives have told him they worry that GTA IV would take away from Iron Man box office. "I don't think I've ever heard of that before," he says. "There's a big reset happening now."

This isn’t the first time that Hollywood is looking at a hot game property with some trepidation. Last fall, the release of Halo 3 pulled in at $170 million on day one, eventually amounting to over $300 million on the game alone in the first week.

Money spent on games could mean less money on movie tickets – a fact that movie executives used to help explain the poor performance of The Heartbreak Kid, the film that reunited the Farrelly brothers with Ben Stiller.

Marvel Studios’ president of marketing Geoff Ammer expressed optimism for both properties sharing the same week. "The two properties can co-exist in the marketplace," he says. "We believe that moviegoers will make going to see Iron Man part of their weekend plans."

Interestingly, little mention was made of the Iron Man videogame, which also released this week on every current game console.



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If you haven't played GTA 4, you cant comment
By Hakuryu on 4/29/2008 5:26:42 PM , Rating: 2
I've been gaming since before the first Atari, and have seen many amazing games over that time. GTA 4 definately deserves a place on the greatest games of history list.

While it's similar to previous episodes, the sheer detail in this game makes it stand out. Turn signals on cars, tv's you can watch for literally hours, fantastic damage on cars (slam headfirst into a pole to get a U shaped dent in front), and much more. While not exactly photo-realistic, the amount of detail adds into something that feels real.

After a night of searching around and jacking cars, my cousin (in the game) calls me and wants to go to a Caberet show... I pick him and go where a magician is on stage. The magician makes a girl float around and my head was full of thoughts of 'wires' and 'its a trick' before I remembered this was a game. It really gets that immersive.

Personally I dont see many movies, and the experience of GTA 4 is like a movie and a game rolled up into one, so I wont be seeing Iron Man. If you haven't played GTA 4 and are basing your opinions on previous GTA's, then you really cant comment on people forgoing Iron Man for this- GTA is really that good.




By Reclaimer77 on 4/29/2008 7:21:35 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
GTA 4 definately deserves a place on the greatest games of history list.


Well I HAVE played GTA 4, and I think this statement is insane.

I suppose the Matrix is on your greatest movie of all time list too ?


By EntreHoras on 4/29/2008 10:52:46 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
suppose the Matrix is on your greatest movie of all time list too ?


Actually... it is.


By Hiawa23 on 4/30/2008 10:09:59 AM , Rating: 2
I have GTA 4, & it may go down as the greatest game for me, as not many games offer so much gameplay so much online options in one package, & the scope of the game is almost unmatched so far this gen for consoles. I think Rockstar did an amazing job with the game, perfect, no, but I don't expect that from any game.


By robinthakur on 4/30/2008 11:30:28 AM , Rating: 2
GTA is probably not aimed at people like me, I've always found it presents a rather depressing, consequence-free vision of the world (most depressing was San Andreas, with a central character and culture which i found utterly alien) and consequently, i didn't enjoy playing it. I don't see the appeal, but obviously some people do. I wish developers would produce genuinely mature games which don't always seem to have to involve criminal elements, serial killers or alien porn. Ironically, Nintendo seems to lead in this field with edutainment (yuk, I feel dirty just typing that) titles which would make the early 90's proud. One would have thought something more involving could be created these days.

Agreed, GTA4 is a good game, but really nothing revolutionary. Its GTA3 with better graphics and better focus. There's too much tendency to label things as the "greatest games of all time" right when they come out which really just helps perpetuate the effects of the marketing spend because its seen to benefit the entire industry when a cross-over game like this "unites" people who like violent gangster movies with those who like violent gangster games.

I think that the games industry is heading in the wrong direction personally, towards homogenised faceless content which is so expensive to produce that it will compromise innovation or mean that only a handful of publishers will be able to afford to bank roll new projects with the restrictive terms which that involves. Its more obviously a business these days, and the proof is douchebags like that guy at EA saying things like "there's a big reset happening now." What does that mean in plain English?

If you look back on Halo 3 (or any of the Halos since they're all mostly identical) now you can see it for what it is: utterly unremarkable with a huge marketing budget and silent complicity from all the tech-publications. Very few told it like it is, and I respect those that did alot more...True classics you look back on in 10 years time and realise they were revolutionary and influential like Ocarina of Time or Super Mario 64/Galaxy. How exactly will Halo 3 be seen to be influential as an FPS? Its too soon to say whether people will feel the same about GTAIV once GTAVI is inevitably released with near photo-realistic graphics predictably running about 30fps and the same gameplay.

I think it sadly will affect Iron Man's takings, which is a shame, but then its not like the release date of GTA4 was a closely guarded secret or something.

ROFLMAO at Matrix being one of the greatest movies ever. "We need guns, lots of guns" Mind you, you probably think Meet the Spartans should be on there too...


RE: If you haven't played GTA 4, you cant comment
By aos007 on 4/30/2008 4:56:08 PM , Rating: 2
If you're going to use only two examples of games as "revolutionary" and are going to make both of them be Nintendo, you're not going to have much credibility yourself. I played games for over 20 years now and I never played either of those (nor in fact had or felt a need to buy a console in the early or mid 90's), and they were not as widely spread as North Americans tend to believe. Most of breakthrough gaming at the time was on Spectrum, Commodore, Atari ST, Amiga and then PC and now consoles.


By robinthakur on 5/1/2008 7:04:06 AM , Rating: 2
I took two games that came out in the last couple of generations. Despite being 27, most of the systems you name save the amiga and pc are before my time, hence while there might have been revolutionary games for the Atari ST, none of them are known to me. I don't contest that there were many revolutionary games for the PC. The context of my point, however, was in the console world, and to a great extent PC gaming is going the way of the dodo slowly but surely (and sadly).

Nintendo do consistantly make revolutionary games whether you like it or not and take a look at somewhere like Metacritic if you disagree for those two games named in my piece. (Both are generally held to be two of the greatest games of all time) They do this because aside from the franchise syndrome, they still reward innovation from their developers and take big risks from time to time. I don't see this as much from the other big two who are more content to substitute genuine gameplay innovation with incrementally better graphics and bigger marketing spends. That's why I'm pleased to again see Nintendo doing well as they have been unappreciated for too long quite frankly.

If you were a game player in the *90's* and didn't buy a console, then you missed out pure and simple as they were where most people would say the best games of the time came out. Where could you even buy a spectrum in the early 90's?? I'm not from North America i'm from the UK and everybody i knew at the time owned either a Sega console or a Nintendo, and the sales figures for those two consoles and their games would tend to contradict your assertion that two of the most popular video games consoles of all time "were not very widespread".

You make the mistake (which too many make) of believing that your opinion and experience is widespread and representative of most people's. In reality you view is rather historic in nature since most of the platforms you mention pre-date the readership of this site and therefore are pretty irrelevent to them. Have you even played GTAIV, or are you just getting in a quick flame while you wait for your spectrum game to load off of tape?


"Well, we didn't have anyone in line that got shot waiting for our system." -- Nintendo of America Vice President Perrin Kaplan














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