Classic 1987 Arcade Game ‘Contra’ Set To Become Movie

Contra, the 1987 classic arcade game by Konami, is set to become a live-action feature film, it was revealed in Beijing on Wednesday.

The project was one of three scripts by Beijing Starlit Movie and TV Culture approved by China’s film bureau this month.

While the plot of the film is similar to the classic game of the same name, it changes its location to an island in the South China Sea and adds in extra Chinese characters, according to its official description.

“In 1988, a huge meteorite lands on an uninhabited island in the South China Sea,” reads the official description published by China’s media watchdog.

“Chen Qiang and Li Zhiyong investigate but come up empty handed. 29 years later, Chen sends commandos Bill and Lance into a combat mission there to neutralize the villainous Red Falcon Organization, but end up facing a different enemy altogether.”

The game first arrived in arcades in 1987, when the Reagan administration’s Iran-Contra scandal was underway. In the US version, Bill “Mad Dog” Rizer and Lance “Scorpion” Bean fought an alien menace on an unnamed island in South America in contemporary times.

However, in the Japanese version, the muscle-bound commandos — thought to be modeled on action stars Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone — fought the terrorist Red Falcon Organization on the fictional Galuga archipelago near New Zealand in the year 2633.

The game was known as Gryzor and Probotector in Europe and Oceania.

The Beijing-based production company previously made 2010’s My Belle Boss 我的美女老板, 2011’s The Warring States 战国, 2012’s Ultra Reinforcement 超时空救兵, 2013’s Special ID 特殊身份 and 2015’s Oh My God 从天儿降.

Chinese social media users have already started speculating that 28-year-old starlet Jing Tian might be cast in the film. She has already appeared in many films financed by Beijing Starlit Movie and TV Culture founder and chairman Lu Zheng, including The Warring States.

The other two movies from the production house approved by the film bureau are Future Diary 未来日记 and Big Order 至高指令, two Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Sakae Esuno. Both series have already been adapted as TV series.

Wei Nan (魏楠), who produced the 2012 science fiction film Soul Transfer Station (灵魂中转站) and co-directed Beijing Starlit Movie and TV Culture’s 2015 film Oh My God 从天儿降, is listed as the screenwriter for the three films.