New drama explores Grand Theft Auto controversy
BBC Two has commissioned Game Changer, a new 90-minute factual drama starring Daniel Radcliffe and Bill Paxton.
Conceived for an adult audience, the one-off drama tells the story of the controversy surrounding the computer game Grand Theft Auto – arguably the greatest British coding success story since Bletchley Park.
Daniel Radcliffe will play GTA’s creative mastermind Sam Houser, and Bill Paxton will play Jack Thompson, the formidable campaigning lawyer who is determined to do whatever he can to stop the relentless rise of Grand Theft Auto.
In autumn 2013 its latest iteration – GTA:V – earned $1bn in its first three days, becoming the fastest selling entertainment product in history.
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.
But the violent gameplay coupled with its outstanding 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.
Game Changer is a BBC in house production. Written by James Wood (Rev, Ambassadors) and directed by Owen Harris (Black Mirror, Misfits).