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Fallout: 25 years before the Amazon show, there was almost a '90s Fallout movie (and we have the script)

We could have seen the Wasteland in live-action years ago.

Image credit: Amazon Prime Video

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The Fallout TV show from Amazon has proven that it is possible to bring the strange, quirky post-apocalyptic world to life, but it shouldn’t surprise anyone to discover that it wasn’t the first attempt at a live-action Fallout property. Back in the 90s, shortly after the first Fallout game became a hit on PCs, the developer explored making a Fallout movie that was never to be.

In the late 90s, Interplay, then the developer behind the Fallout series, created Interplay Films to bring their gaming properties to life on the big screen. One of those was meant to be Fallout, with a film treatment written by Brent Friedman in 1998. That would mean that these conversations were happening while Fallout 2 was still in development.

The project was abandoned before a full script was ever produced and Interplay Films was shut down because making movies is much different than making video games, especially in the 90s when good CGI was more expensive and budgets were much smaller. It isn’t clear if the Fallout movie was abandoned because of cost implications or because they couldn’t develop a story that would live up to fans’ expectations. However, we have a pretty good idea of what the project looked like at one point since Friedman uploaded the script treatment he wrote to the Fallout Wiki back in 2011. Apparently he found a floppy disk with the story written up and decided to share it with the world.

The plot centers on the development of the G.E.C.K. – the Garden of Eden Creation Kit – that is meant to turn a small portion of the Wasteland above into a habitable paradise. None of the characters have names and are instead referred to as “the Hero” and “Female Officer” throughout. The focus is on tensions within Vault 13 as they decide if they want to stay underground or risk forging a place in the remains of the old world.

None of this is particularly groundbreaking as far as stories go and we can’t tell if it would have captured the tone or humor that Fallout is known for, but there is enough here that we wish it had been explored a bit more. The abandoned Fallout movie from the 90s looks like it could have been a fun little adventure if it had been developed maybe a decade later when the series was a bit more established.

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