A new report from Kirk Ewing on the Grandest Game podcast indicates that a Grand Theft Auto movie could have been made in the 2000s starting Eminem and directed by Top Gun director Tony Scott, if not for Rockstar head Sam Houser rejecting the idea. Ewing, an agent in the games industry, recalls a conversation he had with Houser about the idea sometime after Grand Theft Auto III was released:

“I remember taking a call at about 4am from one of the producers in LA with an offer to make a film, and he said: ‘Kirk, we’ve got Eminem to star, and it’s a Tony Scott film, five million on the nose, are you interested?’

“And I phoned up Sam and said: ‘Look, you need to listen to this. They want Eminem in the Grand Theft Auto movie and Tony Scott to direct.’ And he said: ‘Not interested.’

[Kirk Ewing]

According to Ewing, this was the end of the conversation about a potential Grand Theft Auto movie, as Rockstar realized “the media franchise that they had was bigger than any movie that was going on at the time”.

Whether this movie would’ve been based on one of the existing games, or an entirely new story, is something we’ll probably never know. A movie based on such a hit franchise with big names attached almost certainly would have been a hit, but based on the track record of video game movies at the time, it could’ve been a disaster as well.

With more and more successful game adaptations being released as of late, maybe we’ll actually see a Grand Theft Auto film come to fruition, but this version is no longer a possibility. Do you think Rockstar made the right call, or would you have liked to see Eminem star in a GTA movie?

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