Wanna be in a movie?

At E3 2003, we managed to sit in for a demonstration of The Movies, Lionhead’s upcoming strategy game. The Movies will let you play as the owner of a movie studio over a period of about 100 years, from 1900 until the present day. You’ll begin by making black-and-white films, though over the course of your 100-year career, you’ll research such groundbreaking technologies as boom microphones and color film.

Though we were able to see only a temporary, “placeholder” version of the game’s interface, Lionhead designer Adrian Moore assured us that the developer wishes to make playing The Movies as simple as possible. In the menu screen we saw, Moore was able to plan a movie from a single menu, choosing the genre (horror, in this case), the actors (Bruce Campbell, Drew Barrymore, and Vincent Price as “the monster”), and the writing allotment. Coming up with a good script will require a lot of time and effort from your team of writers, represented by a five-star meter that gradually fills up as you wait. However, waiting as long as possible to let your team put together a five-star script will cost you a lot of money, since you’ll be continuously paying your writers and your actors and other staffers in the meantime. In the demonstration, Moore chose to rush the script by interrupting his writers at about a star and a half, which resulted in the perfect script…for a cheesy B movie.