One of the stars of the Resident Evil movie reboot has spoken about how the upcoming film does right by the video game series and overall should leave viewers thinking, “Man, it feels like the game.'” Tom Hopper, who plays Albert Wesker, told Collider that he tried to make his version of Wesker something like Agent Smith from The Matrix but “more three-dimensional.” And overall, Hopper said he hopes viewers see the movie, Welcome to Raccoon City, as being “the game plus more.”
“I think fans of the game will be happy, but at the same time, I think they should recognize that we want to make these characters as real and as grounded as possible,” he explained. “I feel like the Wesker in the game obviously has that [Agent] Smith from The Matrix type idea. I wanted him to be a bit more three-dimensional than that, and have a moral high ground.”
For Wesker specifically, Hopper said his take on the character is “not as cut and dry as it is in the game.” It will add more origin details for Wesker, Hopper teased, going on to say that the film overall aims to be “the game plus more.”
“There’s an origin element to Wesker in this, and what he maybe was before he turned into the one we see in a lot of the games,” he said. “But I think from an aesthetic point of view, I think the games really influence this well. It is an aesthetic that, certainly when we were shooting it, that I was like, ‘Man, it feels like the game.’ I’m really hoping that fans of the game take something nice away from it, that it’s the game plus more. Plus more of a depth to these characters.”
The six Resident Evil movies that came before this one, which starred Milla Jovovich, collectively made more than $1 billion at the box office. Welcome to Raccoon City is described as a “whole new starter,” according to Hopper.
“When I started reading it, it really felt more like a script from a game, from one of the games. It felt immersive and it felt dirtier. It felt like Raccoon City was a grim place to be, and I immediately felt like it was a world that I related to more than anything,” he said. “I’ve seen towns like this in America. That’s what excited me about it, that it felt relatable, I think. Even though you’ve got influence from the game, it felt like a relatable place to live.”
Welcome to Raccoon City premieres on September 3. It’s directed by Johannes Roberts and also stars Kaya Scodelario as Claire Redfield, while Robbie Amell plays Chris Redfield. Veteran character actor Neal McDonough (Band of Brothers, Angels and the Outfield) will play scientist William Birkin.
In addition to this movie, there is a live-action series in the works at Netflix following the Wesker family as well as an animated series with Leon and Claire. As for the video game series, Resident Evil Village is slated for release in May.