The BBC has greenlit the 90-minute drama, which focuses on a bunch of British gaming geniuses centered around Sam Houser (Radcliffe).
For those who do not know, “Grand Theft Auto” offers gamers the chance to step into a fantasy world where they can behave like criminals, gun down rival gangsters and cops, hijack cars and venture deeper into an imaginary American underworld.
The game has been a massive commercial success. In autumn 2013, its latest iteration — “GTA:V” — earned $1 billion in its first three days, becoming the fastest-selling entertainment product in history.
The TV film tracks how the violent gameplay coupled with its commercial success leads to fierce opposition: from parents worried about children immersing themselves in such a violent world; from politicians, alarmed at the values they say it encourages; and above all from moral campaigners, who fight passionately to ban it.
At the vanguard of this crusade is the campaigning lawyer Jack Thompson (Paxton), a man determined to do whatever he can to stop the relentless rise of “Grand Theft Auto.”
“Game Changer,” which is a working title, is a BBC inhouse production. It is written by James Wood (“Rev,” “Ambassadors”), and directed by Owen Harris (“Black Mirror,” “Misfits”). Jim Spencer “(Pride”) produces and Mark Hedgecoe is the executive producer.