Exclusive: Producers picked up rights to the upcoming video game well before the just released trailer became an internet sensation
Producer Sean Daniel and Union Entertainment are sitting on the rights to one of the hottest properties on the internet: the video game "Dead Island."
Daniel's Sean Daniel Company, along with Union Entertainment President Richard Leibowitz and producer Dmitri Johnson, have been tracking the game's development for several years, and acquired rights to it in 2009, TheWrap has learned.
A compelling — and sort of disturbing — trailer for "Dead Island" was released this week. Since then, it's gotten more than 1.5 million views.
The trailer is graphic and dramatic, with appropriately creepy music and plenty of gore. A father, armed with an ax, tries to protect his family from invading zombies.
Now, it's one of the most popular videos on the internet — even though the game won't be released until this year's holiday season.
Daniel ("The Wolfman," "The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon") and Union are scrambling to find the right script.
"Dead Island" doesn't exactly evoke warm holiday thoughts: The game is about a family that has the bad fortune to vacation in an island paradise during a contagious zombie outbreak. The family is cut off from the rest of the world and has to protect the other survivors and escape.
Video games are an increasingly rich source of movie material. The 1996 game "Resident Evil" sparked a successful franchise. "Tomb Raider" and "Mortal Kombat" also inspired movies.
"Dead Island" is published by Deep Silver and developed by Techland.
Union also has the rights to the game "Call of Juarez," and executives from the company will be at the upcoming Game Developer Convention looking for new projects.
Watch the video here. Note – it is very bloody and might be inappropriate for some.