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Can You Make a Movie Out of a Gender Neutral RPG?

Back in 2012, I heard at one point that there were talks about making a "Skyrim" movie, back when the game had been out for about a month or so. The talks didn’t last long. But, a big-budget, or even a small-budget film about "Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim" would still be exciting, and there are plenty of reasons why it could not only have a strong narrative, but a great cast, stunning visuals, and plenty of room to expand to sequels.

However, there is one glaring problem with the prospect of a "Skyrim" movie getting produced: who should play the Dragonborn?

Since you are free to choose not only your race but your gender when you start the game, how would you go about choosing the in-universe race and gender for the character, and then how would you choose the real actor to portray that character? Should you choose to cast a female actor in the role, in order to avoid a backlash from fans of the game who played through it as a female? Or should you cast a male, as the developers had clearly done for the cover art, posters, trailers, and the live-action teaser?

It’s a very tough question to answer, and one that could come up when dealing with a movie version of any RPG video game that includes a character creation system.

There are still doubts in the industry as to whether or not movies based on games can ever be any good. I personally think they can, since plenty of games have strong stories, deep in-universe histories, and engaging characters. It’s just a matter of getting the right director and the right amount of studio support. Picking the right game to adapt isn’t a bad idea either. So there are still chances for some RPG’s to be brought to the movie screen. And I’m curious to see if someone out there has a solution to this sort of predicament, or at least some good options.

Should RPG’s with character creation systems just not get their own movie adaptation based on principle? Or, if they do, is there a way to handle it where both male and female fans can be pleased with who portrays the main protagonist?

  • I like the idea of this topic but I don't know if it should be a yes/no answer. I think it may be easier to write this topic if you weigh the ability of such games to be turned into movies. Instead of should it be made into a movie maybe it should be asked "how" will this game be turned into a movie. This way there is more to grab onto and write about. But I think this is a really interesting topic given the state of both games and movies today – DClarke 6 years ago
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  • That's precisely why I'm bringing it up, and why I asked the last question. This topic can and likely should be tackled the first of those two ways, just like you proposed. – Jonathan Leiter 6 years ago
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  • And yes, I agree that someone should find the best way to approach it from a angle that does not end with a yes or no. – Jonathan Leiter 6 years ago
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