Now, if you heard that Sony was doing a huge video game adaptation, what’s the first game that would come to mind? It likely wasn’t Gran Turismo… but Neill Blomkamp might really have something here. That being said, the movie is scheduled for a 2023 release, so we’ll have to wait a little while to see how it pans out.
While it might seem like a flimsy premise for a film at first, there’s some interesting precedent for why it could work. The movie tells the story of a young kid who grows up playing Gran Turismo. It follows his journey as he becomes a real professional race car driver. Still sound a little far-fetched? Well, strangely enough, it’s happened.
Sony Computer Entertainment Europe actually co-sponsors a program with Nissan and Polyphony Digital to develop drivers, and a number of them got their start with a full Gran Turismo set-up. Perhaps the most notable driver is Jann Mardenborough, who grew up playing the game. He went on to be the third (and youngest) winner of the GT Academy competition, beating 90,000 other people for his spot. Since then, he’s driven formula cars and a Nissan GT-R professionally.
As for Neill Blomkamp, he has a number of high-adrenaline action movies under his belt, including District 9, Elysium, and Chappie. His highly stylized direction and eccentric feel lend themselves incredibly well to something like a Gran Turismo movie. It may also be a surprise to hear that a Gran Turismo film has been in the works since roughly 2013, when Joseph Kosinski was set to write a script. By the time 2018 rolled around, that iteration of the film was abandoned. Then, in May of 2022, we got an official announcement that production was once again moving forward.
Gran Turismo will be released in August of 2023.