Folks, I’m confused. When it was announced that Lionsgate was making a live-action feature film adaptation of Borderlands, I thought that sounded great. Gearbox’s wacky role-playing looter-shooter video game franchise, about a colourful group of fortune hunters on the sci-fi planet of Pandora, has great mythology, big super-powered action beats, and a fantastic villain. It sounds perfect for a bright blockbuster movie.
But then it was revealed that Eli Roth, the guy primarily known for gory horror movies like Hostel and The Green Inferno or grim revenge flicks like Death Wish, was somehow directing. Next up we heard that Cate Blanchett would play Lilith, a super-powered “Siren” in the game. While the 52-year old Blanchett is an amazing Oscar-winning actress, I would never have looked at her and thought of the fiery young Lilith. And now the next puzzling decision for this production has been revealed.
At the end of last year, the buzz around Hollywood was that funnyman Kevin Hart was being looked at for the role of Roland, the game’s primary soldier character. And now Hart’s casting has been officially confirmed by Lionsgate, and I have no idea what the hell is happening anymore. Roland is a very self-serious, physically dominant soldier with a thing for big guns. Meanwhile, Hart is known for being a motormouth funny man whose main visual gag is the fact that he’s… well, kind of short.
So yeah, I need Roth to clue me in on what type of Borderlands movie he’s making here and why Hart isn’t decked out in a mo-cap suit that could be used to bring Claptrap to life instead.
Unfortunately, the filmmaker hasn’t shared any plot details at all yet, but in a statement, he did say that “I’m thrilled to be working with Kevin.”
Borderlands is a different kind of role for him, and we are excited to thrill audiences with a side of Kevin they’ve never seen before. He’s going to be an amazing Roland.
Lionsgate Motion Picture Group President Nathan Kahane backed up Roth’s sentiments on their new leading man, as well as the rest of the team putting this production together.
Kevin has been behind some of the world’s biggest blockbusters, and our source material is inspired by one of the world’s best-selling video games. We love the way our filmmaking team has adapted this story and we couldn’t be in better creative hands.
The person behind that adaptation is Craig Mazin, the writer/producer behind HBO’s utterly brilliant and award-winning Chernobyl series, so I still have quite a bit of hope for Borderlands. There’s just still a lot of confusion right alongside that hope.
Last Updated: January 27, 2021