On the eve of San Diego Comic Con, the largest comic book convention in the world, Nathan Fillion has taken matters into his own hands and created a 14-minute unauthorized Uncharted film starring himself as the game’s main character, Nathan Drake. It’s a role his fans have been begging him to play since the game was first released in 2007, and 11 years later, Fillion is giving the people what they want.
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The last we heard any official news of the Uncharted film produced by Spider-Man’s Avi Arad, who also owns the movie rights to video game franchises Mass Effect and Metal Gear Solid, it was 2013, and the news was basically “it’s coming!” As Variety reports, that film has basically been stuck in development for years, and a search for the film on IMDb reveals a page with no mention of Arad and Spider-Man: Homecoming‘s Tom Holland has signed on to play Nathan Drake.
Meanwhile, Fillion has been vocal about wanting to play the character since the first movie buzz started. His fans noticed their physical similarities from the get-go, and the Indiana Jones-meets-Tomb Raider vibe of Uncharted frankly seems like an awesome fit for Fillion, who’s most well known for his starring roles in Firefly (and its accompanying movie conclusion, Serenity) and Castle.
This time of year, teasers for major SDCC announcements are common. On July 11 and 12, Fillion shared a photo of rapper Drake on his Instagram with the caption “Sic Parvis Magna” (roughly translates to “from small things, great things come”), followed by a photo of a map and journal captioned with just a date: “7/16/18.” The Drake photo is clever for two reasons: one, because it relies on fans’ knowledge of Uncharted to draw the connection between the rapper, Drake, and the Latin phrase in the caption, which is a big part of the video game. The map photo is also clever because it doesn’t reveal much, but it does confirm what fans may have suspected from the first photo. Well played, Fillion.
Outlets that cover geek culture ran with the teasers. ComicBook, Digital Spy and IGN were among those that reported on the potential announcement, with each of them filling in details of the allegedly in-development film’s slow progress toward production.
— Nathan Fillion (@NathanFillion) July 16, 2018
Then, when July 16 came, Fillion released his unauthorized “fan video.” Variety notes that the film is similar to Adi Shankar’s 2015 “bootleg” Power Rangers short. Sometimes, it’s necessary to take matters into your own hands — and the hands of your talented friends — to create something great. Variety notes that the proximity of the short film’s release to SDCC perhaps points to greater things, which would be an added layer of meaning behind Fillion’s first Instagram post.
We’ll have to wait and see what happens at the massive international convention, but one thing’s for sure: This 14-minute action flick is better than some of the high-budget action movies we’ve paid actual money to see in theaters this year.