Peter Jackson Is Not “Behind” Halo!

I can’t believe how hysterical some Halo fans have become over the news that Peter Jackson has lent his name as an executive producer (who don’t actually do anything) to the upcoming Halo project. Don’t get me wrong… Jackson getting WETA involved with Halo is FANTASTIC news… but that’s all there is to it.

Over the last few days I’ve read so many incorrect stories and posts that proclaim things like (and these are direct quotes):
– “Peter Jackson is Helming Halo!”
– “Jackson in charge of Halo production”
– “Peter Jackson is now behind Halo”

Not to mention, I’ve received almost 50 emails from random people all basically asking me the same question. “What do you think now that Peter Jackson is in charge of Halo?”. My answer is always the same… “Peter Jackson is not behind, in charge or in any way in control over anything with regards to the Halo movie”. It’s that simple.

Look, let’s get some facts straight here.

1) Peter Jackson is NOT directing Halo.
He is only listed as an executive producer

2) Peter Jackson is NOT the producer for Halo.
The Halo project already has producers who have brought Peter on as an EXECUTIVE producer. And don’t be fooled by the word “EXECUTIVE”… that’s actually a lower title than producer.

3) Producers and Executive Producers different things.
The dictionary defines a PRODUCER as “The chief of a movie production in all matters save the creative efforts of the director. A producer is responsible for raising funding, hiring key personnel, and arranging for distributors.”

If defines an EXECUTIVE PRODUCER as “one who is involved in the overall production and its finances and not involved in any technical or creative aspects”

4) Peter Jackson has no decision making involvement in Halo
The official Bungie press release plainly says that Jackson and Fran Walsh are only “CONSULTING” for the movie and providing WETA and their production studios in New Zeland. Decisions will be made by the director, and the Producers (Mary Parent, Scott Stuber and Peter Schlessel). Jackson and Walsh will only periodically consult. And I doubt they’ll do much of that since…

5) Jackson is next working on The Lovely Bones
Once finished with all of the King Kong production and DVD work, Jackson’s next project (that he is PRODUCING and DIRECTING) is The Lovely Bones. There is VERY little to no time for him to be directly involved with Halo on any level.

Look, I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again… I hope a Halo Movie ROCKS! I really do. And them getting WETA involved is HUGE FANTASTIC news for any Halo fan. Seriously! Just don’t get all excited that Peter Jackson is making Halo… becasue he’s not. They will use his NAME every chance they get… but he’s not actually going to be doing anything on the film other than MAYBE consult once in a while… you know… when he’s not super busy making his own movie (The Lovely Bones) at the same time.

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23 thoughts on “Peter Jackson Is Not “Behind” Halo!

  1. Hey guys.

    Just a theory. I follow movies but not the technicalities so tell me if I’m wrong here but the movie’s coming out mid 07. That’s quite a long way away and who’s to say that it doesn’t get knocked back just like most projects in entertainment do?

    So we’ve got loads of time for production and so as the movie is just getting going maybe Bungie wanted to bag Jackson straight away and the easiest way to get him in was to appoint him EP. If you think about it, he enjoys Halo 2 to play and it’s said on the BBC news website that he’s ‘greatly looking forwards to the project’. So Bungie has a man that’s not only a creative genius, but also very eager with the film.

    Sounds to me like he might get a promotion once it’s kicked off. I mean who’s got the power to appoint the director, co-director or producer with the nod from Bungie? Peter Jackson.

    All I’m saying here guys is that no industry is a solid shell of rigid rules. You can bend them to suite the job to a certain extent.

    So John, if i had some advice for you it’d be never state something as true if you can’t prove 100% that it’s true. Suggest it, sure, but don’t state is as ‘fact’ (as you have done already) when you can’t be entirely sure.

    The above is my theory. I’m not saying it’s fact. Sure, it’s not as lightly as your theory, but it’s possible, which proves that yours isn’t ‘fact’ yet. Not yet.

    I’m not accusing you here by the way. Just trying to keep people’s eyes as open as possible.

    Thanks :D

  2. Hey John,

    Glad I’m not the only one who can see through the Peter Jackson/Halo hysteria. I’ve been saying exactly the same things on our forum over at CB.

    Nobody is trying to put Halo down by saying this. All we’re trying to do is get people to have a little perspective over this news.

    Spielberg has executive produced dozens of movies, do you really think he had creative input on the majority of them? Not really, most of them only got his name on a credit because they were produced/financed through Amblin. Do you really think he had time to have input on all those movies while sustaining his own creative vision in his own movies during the 80s; his most creatively-intensive period? No. That’s not to say he didn’t hold some sway over some, but only ones he was more directly involved in anyway – whether it be because he was writer/full producer/passed on directing himself but handed to a lowlier director as a favour while he did something else.

    This is good news for Halo. It’s just not the good news rabid Halo fans are turning it in to.

    Remember what happened with Serenity guys. Rabid fandom can turn regular people and regular geeks away from your movie. Don’t make it flop by becoming the next generation of Browncoats.

  3. John,

    May I just open a point for debate;

    There’s the whole hum-ha about how much PJ is gonna

    partake in Halo. The whole explaination and

    dictionary definitions of his role or, more importantly,

    non-role in the movie is quite clearly put and I haven’t

    seen many people contradicting your opinion/research on

    the matter. The Exec isn’t the the movie God.

    That box is checked.

    So much so in fact that only a lone soul could I find

    in direct opposition against what I find to be quite a

    steadfast and well constructed argument you have placed.

    That one person is….

    Dan…. Dan…. Daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan………!

    John Campea!!!!!

    No. one has not lost one’s mind!


    Follow me into this rabbit hole of complex contradiction….

    I recently got sooooo tired of waiting for the next Audio Edition

    (Good complaint! The frickin thing RUUUUULES!

    A residency is held in my mp3 player!!!!!!)

    ….. that I resorted to downloading every single one

    of em and backtracking, after all it’s good timeless

    debate, not just old news.

    I reached Vol 6 and came across what I found to be a

    tentatively diappointing remark made by yourself. Anyone

    can dl vol6 and check this.

    I say “tentatively disappointing” because I await your response.

    The following was exclaimed in regard to T-Formers posting

    re: the upcoming movie version of the TV show…

    “…. Steven Spielberg is going to act as one of the

    Executive Producers on the project, which any

    Transformers fan should be excited about because;

    Spielberg involved? That’s instant credibility!……”

    What the……..?

    You mean to say that senor Spielbergo in a mere

    Execs role can bring instant cred to this movie?

    Then why not PJ? Why not to Halo?

    I’m not of the opinion that you have double standards

    and I’m pretty damn sure that you know what you’re

    talking about when it comes to movies.

    Wanna clear this one up?

  4. Hey there “you are all sad”

    I guess that makes you even “sadder” for taking time to comment on it.

    So you say: “botom line it will rock and thats all you should care about”

    I’m curious… what do you base that opinion on? The long line of successful video game movies in the past? Oh wait… there aren’t any.

    Perhaps you base that on the long list of great movies Bungie has produced… oh wait… they don’t know anything about making movies.

    Ummm…. ok… so what do you base that on?

  5. you are a bunch of very sad people who have nothing better to do with your time. i only came across this by accident loking for a trailer of the movie. botom line it will rock and thats all you should care about. sad sad sad peoples.

  6. Was just lookin around and found this. Lemme just pop in some info and a bit of opinion if I may.

    First it seems you have a general idea of what an executive producer does, but not a clear concept of what impact he has on a film. The executive producers involvement in a project can vary a lot, but basically they are like “the man” that the crew has to report to and please.

    It’s only a good thing to have Peter Jackson involved. As executive producer he can pull together teams and resources he’s used for other films if he wants to. This would be a good thing.

    If he wanted to do the very least possible he’d invest a buncha money, trust everyone else to make a good movie, and then screen it and say: a) It’s good, release it. b) It stinks but just release it anyway c) It’s not very good, but with a bit more money for some reshoots etc it can be or d) It’s good, but it could be great with some more money.

    Saying he’s running the ship isn’t entirely innacurate. He’s not the captain or crew of the ship, he’s in the cruiseline management that owns the boat and sends it out.

    So…what does this mean? Up to you to what you think will happen with the film, but in my opinion it’s clearly a good thing to have Peter Jackson in on the film. With him in early he can have an effect on the film throughout the all important stages of getting the cast and crew together. Who knows, he could decide to take on a larger role. Likely at this point it is still in such an early phase of production that the crew hasn’t been lined up yet anyway so he basically is at the helm until then regardless of whether he will be during production.

    Hope it’s good. Of almost any game made, I think this is among the best set up for a film adaptation. Of course, there’s a good chance it could suck.

  7. “As executive producer, it’s assumed that Peter Jackson will have a senior supervisory role over the Halo movie production – much like the way Spielberg and other directors with enough clout oversee other projects their production studios take on.”

    “Halo will be shot in Wellington, New Zealand, and will use Jackson’s production and post-production facilities there.”

    “During the XBOX 360 press conference in Amsterdam, Jackson appeared on the big screen and announced how big a fan he is of the Halo series, commenting that he’d finished playing Halo 2 while filming King Kong.

    He said that he loves the games so much that he wants to work with the filmmakers on the movie. He is going to be Executive Produer, but is going to be a lot more involved than a EP tends to be. The folks hosting the conference made it clear that he won’t be directing it, but they are going to make the movie in New Zealand, and Jackson is going to use his resources.”

    In my opinion, both those who are saying that “he won’t actually do anything” and the ones who say “he is in charge of the project” are wrong. He WILL have some creative input and make some decisions, but it’s not yet clear in what degree. Anyway, time will tell.

  8. I’m just speaking on behalf of the topic of Executive Producers. As far as Peter Jackson in Halo, i agree that his invovlement will be minimal. Any creative input will be based from a financial stand point.

    And in no way am i defending the rumours. In fact, as fun as they are to discuss at points, i think the entire experience of initially experiencing a film for the first time has almost been ruined by internet rumours, and more specifically, fanboys. It’s bad enough that trailers sometimes give away too much, now it’s the never ending discussion of details of the films years before principal photography has even begun. (not that i’m saying i don’t enjoy discussing such things to a certain extent, i just feel it’s changed the film going experience in a negative way) HOWEVER, when it comes to films such as Halo, which i have no personal interest in, carry on!

  9. Hey Jay,

    Good points… but the examples you raise are the exceptions to the rule. Not to mention that you have to look at all of this in the light that both Jackson and Bungie have already laid out the limitations of Jackons involvment… and that Jackson is making and direction his own film at the same time.

    My point was that Spielberg was already creativly invoved in the film

    Lucas was already creativly involved in his films

    Jackson is not… and according to Bungie… he won’t be.

    Once again… I’m just going on what Jackson and Bungie have said and published in interviews and press releases available for everyone to read. I don’t even know why this is a debate. This isn’t my “interpretation”… it’s what they’ve said.


  10. Just to play devil’s advocate, it’s not always true that executive producers don’t sometimes play a role in the creative side of things. It’s usually their job to keep the director in check, and just because it’s the money side of things doens’t mean creativity doens’t come in to play. Sometimes an exec will cut a scene or have the director change things for budget sake.

    I think Poltergeist is a great example. It doesn’t matter that Speilberg wrote it because writer’s don’t get any say when it comes to the shooting of their script, and generally aren’t even allowed on the set. HOWEVER, Spielberg DID have a HUGE hand creatively, mainly because of his exec. producer position giving him the power to get his hands on things creatively. To this day it’s arguable over who really deserves the director credit on that one.

    And the ULTIMATE proof that an executive producer can have a HUGE hand in a film creatively…..GEORGE LUCAS??? He was exec. producer on Jedi and Empire. Just because he wrote them doesn’t mean that that’s the only reason he was creatively involved in the shooting of the film.

    And with Jackson, i’m sure he will have some sort of input on the choice of a director, which is a HUUUGGEEEE piece of creative involvement.

    Anyways, that’s that.


  11. John

    I read Your Blog almost every day and think you are usually right. However, you are riding fine lines off technicalities with this movie and your defense of your predictions. In my humble opinion, you have been casting mostly doubt and taunts at this movie and I think as a typical movie watcher that having Peter Jackson name on this is big deal. The Steven Spielberg comparison was a strong argument and you lost. Oh and giving a “I hope this move rocks BUT… does not mean that much. It sounds like just a PC way to bag on the movie and try to appear objective.

    I just saw the trailer for Doom today and it looks like it will suck. If that is any prediction of how Halo will come off the movie will be a big waist of time. By the way, I really liked the video game. Hope the move is worth watching

    Ohh and as a just question what do you do for your day job? Or is the Movie Blog how you pay your rent?


    Russell (a fan)

  12. Hey there Chark

    Let me clear some things up here. #1, I originally said that no A-List Director would come on to direct Halo if Bungie was going to maintain control. I still stand by that.

    #2 My post that announced Jackson was coming on board said this:

    “This is huge for Halo. I never thought in a million years that someone like Peter Jackson would even lend his name to a project like this one (and remember… lending his name may very well be all that he’s doing for Halo). Halo fans should look at this as nothing but positive news.”

    I still stand by that.

    I NEVER said someone like Peter Jackson wouldn’t get involved on SOME level (although to be perfectly honest I never would have expected it either). But I’m not surprised they got WETA. That’s just a smart move (the only thing smarter would have been to get ILM but according to some online sources they were already too booked for the next 3-4 years whereas WETA was totally available as soon as Kong was done).

    #3 My only point in this entire post was to calm the huge wrongly informed hystaria that Peter Jackson was somehow “in charge” or “in control” or “directing” Halo. He’s clearly not. I was just reporting the facts…

    these facts in no way prove me right or wrong about my prediction that no A-List director will sign on to the project as long as Bungie insists on maintaining creative control. That’s all that I’m saying.

    And for the record… I DEEPLY HOPE I’M WRONG. But nothing in this post goes to proving I’m either wrong or right. That is still yet to be seen.

    Good discussion.

    Cheers mate.


  13. Chark’s the name, my friend. Chark. As in shark, but with a C. Chris is a wussy name.

    Ok, here we go.

    I read the Bungie announcement. I’m not refuting any of the points you’re bringing up.

    My point is that John was of the mind there would be no big names attached to this project. He was wrong, but he keeps attempting to justify his first statement with “only” executive producer. There doesn’t seem to be an ability to admit there was some gun-jumping with the “dump on the Halo movie bandwagon” that is proving to be wrong. This is the second post of trying to prove the point he was right after his original “Holy #@$* PJ IS involved” post pretty much cleared it up.

    Until next time, may all fronk in your life be robust and danky.

  14. I wouldn’t rag on Fredo too much. I think he was just kidding. He seems to agree with John on a lot of things. But I’ve got to ask Fredo and Chris a couple of questions. Are you saying that

    1- John was wrong when he said Mr. Jackson was only Executive Producer? If so, can you point me to where you got your information? The Bungie announcment seems to suggest John was correct.

    2- Are you saying John was wrong when he said Mr. Jackson was only going to consult on the film? If so, can you point me to where you got your information? The Bungie announcment seems to suggest John was correct.

    3- Are you saying John was wrong when he said Executive Porducers don’t have decision making power? I’ve never read anything to suggest otherwise. If so, can you point me to where you got your information?

    4- Are you saying Mr. Jackson will have more to do with a halo movie than just consult and get weta involved? The interview with Mr. jackson and the Bungie people on Oct 4 2005 on Coming Soon DOT Net seems to suggest john was correct.

    5- Chris, when you say “Halo nabs Peter Jackon and his crew at WETA and John continues to cry about about it.” Did you not read john’s article on October 4, 2005 titled “Peter Jackson to Executive Produce Halo The Movie” where john said it was great news that Mr. Jackson was involved and even better news that weta was involved? In this very article john has said he wishes Mr. Jackson was in control of the film. How does that equal john “crying about it”?

    I agree with chris that this is a great site for debate. I think that is all Fredo was doing in fun when he made his first post. I don’t think anyone should take it personaly.

  15. Attacks? Did you guys leave your sensitive meter at 10 this morning? Jeeze- he’s simply pointing out the truth- John bagged Halo from the beginning as not being able to attract any heavy weights. Halo nabs Peter Jackon and his crew at WETA and John continues to cry about about it. The guy can’t be wrong as evidenced by his second “Yeah, but…”.

    Relax. That’s why we enjoy reading this blog. John stirs up controversy. It’s fun to argue– even more so about movies because they’re so subjective. I think Fredo was just calling out John’s intellectual honesty… and he did it quite well.

    As a side note– it was, in fact, me who stole John’s girlfriend. Gotta love that accent!

  16. Jackson getting involved is still a good sign. It shows that the people actually making the decision want talented people behind the movie. Jackson produciong, no matter how much or little he is involved, and WETA doing the effects demonstrates this. So while Jackson might not leave his mark on the movie it indeed shows that this should be a damn good movie.

  17. Fredo, what’s your deal? Did John still your girl or something? All the posts you’ve been leaving are bitter, angry attacks. Ever say anything positive or are you just an ass?

  18. Hey Fredo,

    Oh come on dude.. Why would I have “sour grapes”? I hope Halo rules. I really do.

    As far as “How would I know?” Ummm… dude… just go and read the press release. Listen to what Jackson himself has said. Carefully read what Bungine themselves have said. It’s not a secret.

    Hahaha… Spielberg didn’t actaully do anything on Gremlins except get a coule of other key people involved. As far as Poltergiest goes… yes he was the Exec Producer… BUT HE ALSO WROTE THE STUPID THING! So obviously you can see his work in it. Jackson is not Writing, Directing or Producing Halo… HE SAID SO HIMSELF!!!!

    I’m not making any of this up. I WISH Jackson was in control of Halo… I really do. but he’s not. Those are just the facts… don’t get mad at me for repeating them.


  19. Wow, was that supposed to be educational? Because it sounded like a second installment of sour grapes. Let’s think about this for a minute. Have you ever been the executive producer of a movie? Have you spoken personally with Peter Jackson? Exactly. So how would you know? Because the film school bible says so? Jeesh. It’s called putting the best – producer, director, FX and Bungie – and the brightest together to make a kick ass movie.

    PS, Spielberg has EP’d a lot of movies and you can smell his mark a mile away. Poltergeist? Gremlins? Should I go on?

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