"Battleship" producer Scott Stuber has won a hard-fought battle for the movie rights to popular video game "Gears of War," an individual familiar with the project has told TheWrap.
Stuber and his Bluegrass Films banner will develop the project with video game publisher Epic. Michael Clear will oversee the project for Bluegrass, which has a first-look deal at Universal, though the studio is not currently involved with "Gears of War."
Bluegrass' next step will be to hire a writer to adapt the property, which was chased by high-profile producers including Lorenzo di Bonaventura ("Transformers") and Neal Moritz ("The Fast and the Furious").
Set on the planet Sera, "Gears of War" is a first-person shooter that follows a former P.O.W. who leads the human resistance against the Locust Horde, a race of creatures who emerge from beneath the Earth's surface intent on eliminating mankind.
Stuber recently produced the action movies "Battleship" and "Safe House," and he's also behind Universal's upcoming Keanu Reeves film "47 Ronin."
"Gears of War" joins "Assassin's Creed," "Splinter Cell" and "World of Warcraft" among prominent video game adaptations in development, though titles such as "Halo" and "Bioshock" are proof of how hard video games can be to adapt for the big screen.
The original "Gears of War" game was released in 2006, and New Line acquired movie rights the following year. The studio attached Len Wiseman to direct from a script by Stuart Beattie but a movie adaptation never got in gear due to creative differences between the filmmakers and Epic executives, who wished to maintain significant creative control.
The news of Stuber landing rights to "Gears of War" was first reported by Variety.