“This is really a prequel to the movie,” says Writing for Film & Television instructor John Meadows (WiseGirls, Lost: Via Domus). During a recent Writing for Games master class, John walked current Writing and Game Design students through his most recent writing project: an XBox 360 adaptation of James Cameron’s much-anticipated film, Avatar.
After writing the game adaptation for the hit television series Lost, John was no stranger to meeting the high demands of Hollywood’s A-list talent. Avatar: The Game put him in frequent contact with the likes of the film’s producer John Landau along with Sigourney Weaver.
“We had a lot of pressure to make sure everything was up to speed,” he said to the audience inside the new Writing campus‘ HD theatre.
As students are learning in a newly-added course on Writing for Games, the writing process greatly differs from writing for film or television. In John’s experience adapting pre-existing films and television series to video games, writers come in toward the end of the production and rush to meet the game’s release deadline.
“The first week I was there [at Ubisoft Montreal], I got slapped with the whole glossary of Na’vi,” John says, referring to the native language of the film’s mystical planet, Pandora.
Along with his co-writer on this project – Film Production grad Kevin Shortt — John penned a script that reached approximately 900 pages. [Considering the average film screenplay is about 110 pages -- wow!]
A big congratulations to John on the game’s release and his continued success!