February 24, 2010

Neil Labute Directs Promo Short for PS3 Game

Hitting stores yesterday was a rather unique Playstation 3 title called Heavy Rain. I had a chance last year to fly to Los Angeles and check out a level of the then still under development title and was immediately impressed by its incredibly cinematic presentation. The portions of the game I saw were very creatively directed, and the narrative of the game, which focuses on the hunt for a serial killer through the eyes of multiple inter-connected characters also seemed quite intriguing and carefully presented. Even the poster promoting the game treated it like a movie, right down to listing the "virtual" actors that "starred" in the game. Unfortunately, I haven't got a chance to see much more of the game (even though Sony sent me an advance copy) because I've been in Whistler for the last month working on the Olympics but while looking for more info on the title (and pouting that I wasn’t playing it) I stumbled upon this very intriguing – and unique - promotion for the title I found over at IGN.

Neil Labute, a filmmaker that would be awfully low on my list of people I'd expect to make a film promoting a video game, has directed a short called How Far Would You Go? which explores one of the themes of the game, chiefly, how far would you go for someone you loved? The curious film features film directors like Peter Bogdonavich (in a piece promoting a video game!) Nicholas Roeg, Stephen Frears as well as actors like Samuel L. Jackson. This is easily the strangest promotion for a video game (which it doesn't even seem to realize it is) that you'll ever find. Kudos to the PlayStation team for getting this incredibly unique marketing film done - though somehow I suspect that the kernel of the idea that launched this project and the end result are very different creatures.

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