Sony is having a rather rough week. As a matter of fact, so is Tom Holland. Deadline reports that director Dan Trachtenberg (10 Cloverfield Lane) has exited the live-action Uncharted movie. This comes right on the heels of Sony and Marvel not meeting an arrangement over Spider-Man in the MCU.
The Uncharted series, developed by Naughty Dog, feels like it’s tailor-made for a big-screen adaptation. It follows the somewhat reckless yet charming Nathan Drake as he searches exotic locales for mysterious treasures. It takes obvious inspiration from the Indiana Jones franchise but sets itself apart with a surprising amount of character depth. The stunning action set pieces don’t hurt. And Sony has been trying to get a film off the ground for almost a decade.
David O. Russell (Silver Linings Playbook) signed on to direct Mark Wahlberg in the lead role before that whole project fell apart in 2011. Neil Burger (Divergent), Seth Gordon (Horrible Bosses), and Shawn Levy (Real Steel) have all been attached at one point. With Levy attached, the project became an origin story. And Holland was cast in 2017.
The news of Holland’s casting and the direction of the story breathed new life into the project, even with Levy leaving in 2018. Trachtenberg took over in January of last year. Although he only had one feature film under his belt, Trachtenberg is a self-proclaimed fan of Uncharted. And he had proven his gamer credentials with an excellent short film based on Portal in 2011.
The Uncharted movie has had a mountain-sized load of problems since its inception. And the report doesn’t give a reason behind Trachtenberg’s departure. But Sony remains adamant about moving forward. Holland will still star in the lead role. The studio still plans for this to be the first film released under PlayStation Productions, which was set up last year to create adaptations of their popular franchises. Sony is quickly looking for Trachtenberg’s replacement with hopes of finding one by the end of Summer. With luck, production will begin early next year.