Free Guy took inspiration from Horizon Zero Dawn, Apex Legends, Twitch and more
free guy borrows a lot from the video game medium and the culture that surrounds it. But the team didn’t see it as a surface relationship and instead looked into a lot of video games for inspiration. In a recent interview with ComingSoon, visual effects supervisor Swen Gillberg explained the video game-related steps they took to get ideas for the film, which started out watching a ton of Twitch streams.
RELATED: Horizon Forbidden West Release Date Revealed, Coming Next Year
While Grand Theft Auto was one of the biggest influences on the film, Gillberg explained how they viewed footage from a wide range of video games when searching for the film in addition to using the first-hand knowledge of various creative members. . Some of those influences are pretty general, like people walking through walls in the background, but most of the other video game qualities in the movie were an amalgamation of a lot of different ideas.
“We really tried to watch as many video games as possible,” he said. “For preproduction, we watched so many Twitch videos. There is a big enough Fortnite and Grand Theft Auto influence on the film. Grand Theft Auto was probably the biggest. We also watched Monitoring, Apex Legends, Red Dead Redemption, Anthem, Horizon Zero Dawn, and Halo but we really tried to diversify as much as we could and get as many different influences as we could. Overlays are really a mix of a bunch of different games where you could get prizes and treasures to help the character make their way through the video game.
RELATED: Free Guy 2: Disney Officially Wants Ryan Reynolds Comedy Sequel
The film ends up entering a paradisiacal area, which can be easily equated directly to Horizon Zero Dawn and its post-post-apocalyptic world. However, Gillberg said that Horizon didn’t specifically push the direction of this setting, but a mesh of other video games and what the script called.
“Yes, that was one of the influences,” he explained. “We haven’t really tried to lean on one in particular. We really wanted to keep it alive and varied. But certainly the luxuriance there was an influence. I think in the script it is mentioned that he basically jumps into an area similar to Shangri-La and so we wanted to make it an otherworldly place that doesn’t necessarily look like Earth. If you’ve noticed the plants, they’re almost exotic. It was influenced by the script, but also by reviewing all the video games we could get our hands on.