Earlier on Wednesday, the team behind the Silent Hill horror franchise released the live Silent Hill Transmission, a broadcast that gave updates on upcoming games and merchandise. But another big announcement was also mixed in! A new movie adaptation based on the games is officially in the works, and it will see the return of director Christophe Gans and producer Victor Hadida! The full Transmission can be viewed below.
Focus on the film adaptation begins midway through the broadcast, which starts with the introduction of Konami’s Digital Entertainment Assistant Producer, Rui Naito. Naito states that the film adaptation will be “the catalyst for the revival of new Silent Hill games” before steering into the origin of the film’s production.
According to Naito, Hadida reached out to Konami with the proposal to return to the franchise with Ganz, who was also interested in returning to direct as well. A script was then pitched, and received well by Konami. Naito then stated that it was the film’s pitch that gave him the idea to revive the classic games.
The video then switches to Gans and Hadida to discuss the upcoming project, titled Return to Silent Hill. Both go into detail on the impact and themes of the infamous game, Silent Hill 2, which is set to be the game on which Return to Silent Hill is based on. As the two speak, concept art and storyboards for the upcoming film are shown. Gans expresses that while the film is going to feature a fresh take on the lore of Silent Hill, it will also be a faithful and respectful adaptation of the haunting story.
The games of the Silent Hill franchise were great artistic achievements and I have a responsibility to transpose that on the big screen. That’s why the first film was so well received by fans of Silent Hill, because they felt that I was one of them. It was so important for me to respect the original creation, you know. That was the base and the start of everything… So I’m going with a maximum of humility, a maximum of respect, but at the same time, I have quite a challenge, a goal. Which is how to transpose the language of the game, which is entirely about immersion, into a tale, into a story that we can tell in 90-100 minutes.
Returning to the Town that Burns…
Silent Hill is a franchise with a dedicated fanbase dating as far back as 1999. The first game followed protagonist Harry Mason as he enters the titular New England town searching for his missing adopted daughter. The game was later adapted into a film in 2006 by Gans and Hadida, with Don Carmody also serving as producer and using a script by Roger Avary, Nicolas Bouhrief, and Gans. The film had notable changes, such as swapping out the fatherly Harry with motherly Rose. The film also incorporates elements from the sequel games Silent Hill 2, 3 and 4. The film’s critical reaction was overall negative, but fans praised the film for its visuals, particularly with the franchise’s iconic monsters.
In 2012, the film Silent Hill: Revelation was released into theaters as a sequel. This installment followed the plot of Silent Hill 3, with the cast primarily aged up and returning to the infamous New England city. The film was received negatively by fans and critics alike.
Silent Hill 2 is a separate story from the first and third installments. The game follows James Sunderland, who ventures to the town when he receives a letter from his dead wife, telling him that she is waiting there. Compared to its predecessor, Silent Hill 2 leans more into psychological horror, taking inspiration from such filmmakers as David Cronenberg and Alfred Hitchcock. On this concept alone, this gives Gans and Hadida a fresh slate to step back into the beloved horror franchise. But the question remains, will it be worth it to return to Silent Hill?