The Loch Ness monster. The abominable snowman. Bigfoot. Darryn’s love life. All legendary tall tales that have not offered a shred of tangible proof that they actually exist. And for the last few years, you could add the Uncharted movie to that list. Originally announced all the way back in *checks notes* 2009, a feature film adaptation of Naughty Dog’s masterful video game franchise has gone through so many directors and delays that it’s not even worth recounting them all. All we need to know now is that it’s actually happening and who is making it.
And yes, it looks like it is actually happening this time. Following on from reports from a few weeks back in which star Tom Holland – who is playing the younger version of fortune hunter Nathan Drake – claimed that production will start this month, it’s now been officially confirmed that director Ruben Fleischer (Venom, Zombieland) will be behind the camera.
Things are also ramping up in front of the camera. Alongside the aforementioned Holland Nathan Drake and long-attached Mark Wahlberg as his mentor/father figure Victor “Sully” Sullivan, the cast is now being fleshed out. Variety reports that Oscar-nominee Antonio Banderas has joined the production in an unspecified role, though murmurs on the grapevine are pegging the veteran actor as the film’s main villain. Joining Banderas will be The 100 and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina actress Tati Gabrielle and relative newcomer Sophia Ali. No details of their roles have been revealed either.
Meanwhile, following on from Holland’s recent praise that Uncharted has “one of the best scripts I’ve ever read”, Wahlberg has also been talking up the latest draft of the film. This most recent iteration was penned by Rafe Judkins and the Iron Man writing duo of Art Marcum and Matt Holloway. And according to what Wahlberg told Collider, their script has some classic adventure franchise roots.
It’s exciting because, without giving too much away, it’s more of an origin story. Meeting them, and Nathan becoming Nathan. Sully and him meeting, trying to not only get over on each other, but also starting to partner up and develop that relationship. It’ll be very cool. It’s the first time I’m in a movie that’s a movie. I felt like when I was reading it, I was reading Indiana Jones or Thomas Crown Affair. It’s got these great elements of these heist movies and adventure movies like I’ve never been a part of.
Well, that’s actually comforting. Uncharted is very much a riff on Indiana Jones as it follows Nathan Drake travelling the world as he searches for and unearths ancient artefacts – usually from exotic, trap-filled ruins and temples – before other ne’er-do-wells get their hands on them. Even the prequel bits of the games showing off Nathan’s younger years – which this movie will be taking its cues from – followed that format. At one point in its development though, the Uncharted movie didn’t sound at all like it would be sticking to this template, so it’s good to know that the recent creators are trying to be faithful to the award-winning games that fans love.
And fans won’t have to wait much longer, as Wahlberg told Collider that “I start filming in about two weeks time.” This will come as a massive relief not just for us, but also the actors. Especially the 48-year old Wahlberg who has been part of this production for so long that he was once supposed to play the much younger lead.
I was attached for years and years to play Nathan Drake and now I’m playing Sully. Even with The Fighter, there was a ticking clock there. There was that biological clock. We gotta’ get going quickly.
Bar any crazy, unforeseen twists, Uncharted should get going this month and will then hit cinema screens less than a year later on 5 March 2021.
Last Updated: March 3, 2020