In 2013, Gabe Newell and J.J. Abrams teased fans in attendance at their Dice Summit keynote with the possibility of a Portal movie. We haven’t heard a great deal more about the project in the years since, but now there’s word that an announcement should be on its way sooner rather than later.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens director Abrams expressed renewed hope in the project in comments he made at this week’s premiere of Westworld. Abrams is among the producers of the new HBO adaptation of the classic sci-fi western.
“We have a meeting coming up next week with Valve, we’re very active,” said Abrams, according to a report from IGN. “I’m hoping that there will be a Portal announcement fairly soon.”
As recently as March, Abrams confirmed that film adaptations of Half-Life and Portal were still in development, albeit with the caveat that there was nothing exciting to announce at that time.
However, it certainly seems that progress is being made. Abrams was eager to talk up the ability of the writers working on the project, in particular their deep appreciation of the Portal and Half-Life franchises.
“Once you said you’re doing a movie or show about a specific thing that is a known quantity you start to find people who are rabid about these things,” said Abrams. “It’s incredible when you talk to someone who just ‘gets’ it, it’s like, oh my God, it’s really the seed for this incredible tree you’re growing.”
Given the links between the Half-Life mythos and the Portal games, it could well be that a film version of the latter series helps set the stage for adaptations of Gordon Freeman’s adventures. However, we’ll have to wait for the announcement that Abrams is teasing for any firm idea of where this project is headed.