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"Suddenly, a cobra strike - a classic game move, MASTER CHIEF strikes with the butt of his assault rifle, taking out ELITE's shields... ... and as the ELITE staggers back, MASTER CHIEF empties half a clip into the alien's torso. Thirty rounds fly through the gun in two seconds." For those keen on detail, some things of note here: although described as a "classic game move" it's unclear whether they mean Halo in specific or just games in general. A melee hit from behind such as this in Halo is usually a one-hit kill, so emptying half a clip would have been unnecessary. However, while that works as a game mechanic, it might well have strained credulity on the big screen, so this may be a positive change. Also, thirty rounds is half a clip, at least for Halo 1's assault rifle.


Rampant for over se7en years.



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[image:9922 left hspace=5 vspace=5 border=0] Just recently, Rampancy.net had an opportunity to acquire a copy of a document, in PDF format, that purports to be a version of the script for the Halo film, written by Alex Garland and dated February 6, 2005.

While there is no way to be absolutely certain, prior to the release of the film, whether or not this is real, it bears a close enough resemblance in its opening portions to the Halo script reviewed by El Mayimbe at LatinoReview and that we posted a link to back on November 8. El Mayimbe rated the script five stars.

While the two scripts might not be exactly the same, and either version might not be the one that ends up being shot, the review and the script itself have convinced me, solely by their content, that at the very least they are working versions of the script for the Halo film.

The script itself has actually quite impressed me as an adaptation of the first game, the plot of which it closely follows. Before anyone asks, it is not my intention to distribute the file widely, nor to "spoil" the film-- although I hardly think that is possible for this audience.

However, recent discussions about casting, about whether or not we'll see the Master Chief's face in the film, and whether the game's original voice cast will be used have proven interesting. So what I propose to do is periodically post small details from the scripts as discussion-starters; points of comparison where the film diverges (even if only slightly) from the games and the novels, to see how the community feels about them. Who knows-- if this script is, in fact, legitimate, and anyone involved in actually making the film sees these discussions, it might serve as food for thought.

[image:9923 left hspace=5 vspace=5 border=0] The first such point I'll post is a short part of an exchange that takes place during the Pillar of Autumn cutscene, as it has been rewritten in this version of the film script. In the game, Cortana points out to Keyes that the ship would be better off with her piloting it down to the surface of Halo. Keyes replies that since the Cole Protocol prohibits the capture or destruction of the onboard AI to protect sensitive information such as the location of Earth, that is not an option.

In the script version, Cortana is more insistent on this point, and Keyes' response seems to indicate that at times it has been necessary to use an "override command" on an advanced AI in order to get it to obey. This isn't necessarily a big change from the way AIs behave in the novels, but it is a change in the way Cortana is presented in the first game, where her trustworthiness isn't really called into question until she comes into contact with Halo's systems in the Control Room.

What do you think? Is the film version of Cortana going to be less reliable, perhaps more rampant, than the one in the original game? If so, what payoff can there be for doing this within the context of the first film? Is this setting up something that happens later-- in other words, are there already plans for sequels to the Halo film? Would those cover the sequence of events in the games, or in the novels?

What do you think? Add a comment below!

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One of the favorite topics of discussion among Halo story obsessives has always been Cortana. Old school Bungie fans remember that advanced artificial intelligences aren't always the most reliable or trustworthy allies. Although I've always argued that Rampancy, as such, doesn't literally exist in the Halo universe, I think there are still reasons to doubt Cortana's character. One of the first noticeable changes that the script introduces, compared to the comparable cutscenes in the first game, is making her borderline subordinate in the exchange over who should pilot the Autumn on its way down to the surface of Halo.


Rampant for over se7en years.



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The document's title page says only "Halo" at the top, with this byline and date, Alex Garland, February 6, 2005, near the bottom. Telltale marks indicate that the PDF was created from a scan of a printed copy that was held in a three-ring binder.


Rampant for over se7en years.



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Tied The Leader shows some good examples of characters who were voiced by one person even though the costume was worn by someone else. Darth Vader is the perhaps the most famous example, and as many others, I'm hoping the Master Chief will be the most recent.

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On the eve of Halo 2's first anniversary, most of the hype isn't about what Bungie is doing, but what Microsoft is doing to get ready the vehicle for whatever Bungie does next: the Xbox 360. We've got:

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Joe Staten has written the third part of his Great Hollywood Journey article at Bungie.net; this one talks about the superb craftsmanship that he, Don Parsons, and Steve Schreck witnessed at WETA Workshops.

The next installment should include information about possible directors for the film.

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The dismal reviews that the Doom movie is getting so far-- check Metacritic.com for a summary-- normally don't have anything to do with Bungie or Halo.

However, when the Halo movie is finally released, the comparisons will be inevitable; Doom was the first popular first-person shooter, and Halo is the most popular Xbox shooter.

So I got a kick out of this quote in the Austin Chronicle's review of Doom:

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Tempus Fugit pointed out in the HBO forum a 1Up interview with Peter Jackson about the King Kong game coming out in connection with Jackson's latest film.

There are a few mentions of other games, among them Halo:

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Visions of Peter Jackson's obsession with rings of power taking over the Halo film in the latest Halo Babies. Thanks mrsmiley.

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The Dominion Post points out the sweet irony in the deal that brings Peter Jackson's WETA Digital studio's talents to bear on the Halo film. Namely, a render farm made of IBM blade servers running Linux, not Windows.

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A double dose of Weekly What's Update this week. SketchFactor got himself all primed to fill in for an ailing Frankie, and then Frankie used his dying breath to provide the real update. What a trooper. For all the verbiage, most of it is rehash of the week's events-- a Halo character to appear in DOA4 and the announcement of, in Frankie's words, Peter Freaking Jackson as the Executive Producer of the Halo film.

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According to Kotaku, Variety is reporting that Peter Jackson's take on the Halo movie as Executive Producer is seven figures (that's at least a million bucks) advance against points. Anything less would be... well, less Bungie-like. (I agree with recent comments that 'you don't just buy Peter Jackson', but I assume that if you could, seven figures would be enough--Ed.)

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Microsoft continues to play cagey with information about the Halo franchise in the aftermath of Gates' E3 comments and the absence of an official announcement by Bungie.

Interviewing Peter Moore and J Allard, Game Informer had the following exchange:

GI: Would you hold Halo 3 for the same time as the launch for the movie?

Moore: Halo what? What are you talking about?

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Xbox.com has been updated with the official announcement of the expected launch lineup for the Xbox 360, as well as the official press release naming Peter Jackson as Executive Producer of the Halo film.

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