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Wastedland: The Axed Fallout Movie

Not in the pitch: this guy. Or indeed any power armour

Times were an awful lot easier for Interplay back in 1998. A string of hit franchises, apparent sovereignty of the new RPG kingdom and, it appears, big, brassy enough cajones to start up a film division. While nothing much ever came of this, we now know that a Fallout movie was in the works, based on the first game. Whatever would it have been like? Let’s find out.
The film never got to full script stage, let alone to the point where anyone donned a blue jumpsuit, but dug up this weekend was a 15-page plot treatment.

It opens with a neat double-punch, demonstrating both the horror and the quirk inherent in living in a 50s inspired post-bomb wasteland: Vault dwellers attempt to deal with their locked-in lives by arranging a series of projectors that evoke catching a train across Los Angeles.

From there it’s a hybrid of Fallout staples and newer ideas (such as a direct Mad Max ‘tribute’ character), though noticeably absent are the likes of ghouls and the Brotherhood of Steel. Noticeably not absent is the line “Foreplay becomes his backstory.”

It’s very much a hero’s journey, there’s a lot more focus on the goings-on inside Vault 13, and frankly some of the suggestions sound on the unfilmable side (at least by 1998 SFX standards) but it’s a bit of a romp. Have a read here (link to PDF down at the bottom).

It is, of course, not entirely impossible that Bethesda/Zenimax will one day license out the Fallout rights for a movie. Probably depends on what happens with their ongoing argy-bargy with Interplay regarding the Fallout MMO, I guess.

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Alec Meer

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Co-founder of RPS. Dungeon Keeper & X-COM 4 Life.

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