The movie is being fully financed by Barbarian executive producer Alex Lebovici’s Hammerstone Studios and will be produced by Kojima and Lebovici.
“I was on video calls with lots of people in Hollywood every week beginning last year, and not just for Death Stranding,” he said. “I received a lot of offers, but my intention from the start was never to make a blockbuster film. Alex Lebovici from Hammerstone Studios shared my vision with regards to that.
“There were a lot of pitches to make a large-scale movie with famous actors and flashy explosions, but what good would explosions be in Death Stranding? Making money isn’t something I’m focused on at all, either. I’m aiming for a more arthouse approach, and the only person who offered to make a film like that was Alex Lebovici, which makes me think he’s a rather unusual type.”
Kojima also said it has yet to be decided if the film will include characters from the game like protagonist Sam Porter Bridges.
“We haven’t quite decided that yet. The failure of film adaptations of games from a while back has led to a lot of movies that cater to gamers, right? That’s why they have the same kind of look as a game. I don’t want the Death Stranding movie to be like that. Rather, I’m taking the approach of changing and evolving the world of Death Stranding in a way that suits film well.
“I made Death Stranding to be a game, and games are games. There’s no real need to turn them into films. So in a way, the Death Stranding movie is taking a direction that nobody has tried before with a movie adaptation of a game. I think that what I need to make is something that will inspire some of the people who watch it to become creators 10 or 20 years down the line.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Kojima explained how his studio came to partner with Microsoft on an “unusual” game that’s currently in development alongside Death Stranding 2.