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James Gunn on learning from Lollipop Chainsaw


Hollywood screenwriter/director James Gunn is working on the script for Lollipop Chainsaw, a game about a teenage girl using a magical chainsaw and cheerleading moves to kill zombies, with the help of her boyfriend's still-living, detached head.

He seems to have some lofty ideas about games nonetheless. "In films, it's hard to say 'we're trying to do something new in a movie' -- it's kind of a simple thing," he told Joystiq in a GDC interview. "Games are infinitely more complex than film, and there's still so much stuff that hasn't been done, it's really exciting, because there's just so much untrampled ground. That's cool. There's so many things that haven't been done." Subtract putting an animate, disembodied head on a zombie body from that list -- that's now been done, and it's "the coolest thing in the world."

For Gunn, Lollipop Chainsaw is a crash course in the world of game development. "When I was a kid, I used to make my own games on the computer, and I understood the basic dynamics of, basically, the 'choose your own adventure' style of how games worked," he said. "But being able to see it from the inside and how things worked -- just that balance between the gameplay and the storytelling aspect of it -- it's an interesting process the whole way through." He sees it as the kind of learning opportunity he had in the film industry, in which he came in as a screenwriter and "then I would just go ask everybody every question I possibly could about visual effects and how that works, and get to watch these directors direct."

We can't wait to see what happens when Grasshopper Manufacture is your reference point for the video game industry.

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