If you ever watched the 1983 sci-fi hacker movie starring Matthew Broderick and Ally Sheedy and thought, “I could totally beat that computer,” then you’re in luck. A WarGames reboot is coming in 2018, as an “experimental interactive series” in which the viewer can finally answer the AI’s iconic taunt: “Shall we play a game?”
MGM and the interactive video company Eko have teamed up with the HerStory creator Sam Barlow to put a modern spin on the campy ’80s sci-fi film. The new WarGames, called aptly #WarGames, substitutes Cold War paranoia for “modern espionage, hacking and government conspiracy” — so basically, daily life in 2017.
WarGames Reboot Teaser
The first teaser for #WarGames is cryptic and dark, showing only flashes of footage from the series interspersed with real TV news footage and references to Yahoo’s 2013 email hack, the 2014 Sony hack, the 2016 e-robbery of a bank in Bangladesh, and the Equifax security breach. The scenes from the #WarGames series is barely distinguishable from the real-life footage, with the main character and hacker Kelly appearing simply through her webcam before the screen explodes into an array of other screens and webcam users. There’s no description of a specific plot line, and whether the series will follow the original movie’s narrative of a brilliant high schooler who accidentally hacks into a U.S. military supercomputer.
It’s all very Mr. Robot — the anarchic nature of the Internet, the cynical view towards modern technology — and even has shades of the independent horror movie Unfriended, which takes place entirely within the screen of a video chatroom. The aesthetic of the interactive series is in line with Barlow’s acclaimed video game Her Story as well, which was an interactive movie video game told exclusively through video clips from fictional police interviews.
In an interview with io9, Barlow expanded on how the interactive series will work for viewers, describing:
You’ll have a bunch of windows on your screen. We’re used to video chatting with our friends, having a big image, and smaller images of other people, things dropping in and out. So we decided to build the show around this concept. As the story’s progressing, all these different characters are talking to each other over the internet, and all of their windows are up on the screen. There’ll be additional video windows as well, so if they’re hacking into CCTV cameras, you’ll see that. If they’re watching a live TV broadcast, you’ll see that.
#WarGames is set to be released sometime in 2018. The series will be available to watch on the Eko website, the Eko presents mobile app, and on “a range of partner platforms” that has yet to be announced.
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