Videogames owe a lot to Hollywood. And why shouldn’t they? Game development is an incredibly difficult task, and sometimes the easiest way to get your own creative juices flowing is to simply borrow somebody else’s ideas—to draw inspiration from the vast reservoir of popular culture and set out on making something new. But among the many different directors responsible for a lot of our favorite films, only a handful of names stand head and shoulders above the rest as being the most influential on our videogames industry. In crafting some of the most beloved movies ever to hit the silver screen, these people have inadvertently shaped the look, sound, and direction of hundreds of games both good and bad. Here are four film directors that inspired some of gaming’s best.
Cameron, James (Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Titanic, Avatar)Director of the two biggest box office films of all time, James Francis Cameron, aged 60, is paradoxically one of the most popular filmmakers now working in Hollywood and one of the most despised. The reasons for this are varied (“both of them could have fit on that raft; I’ve already seen Pocahontas”), but whatever complaints people have about his films, James Cameron is unquestionably one of the most influential action directors of the last 30 years.
It’s no wonder, then, that Cameron’s films should be so popular among videogame developers. After all, most videogames involve some form of combat-oriented conflict (as opposed to, say, sports-oriented conflict) and action is by far the most successful videogame genre today—in 2013, 31.9% of all games sold were action games; in 2014, 28.2%.