May 24, 2012 at 2:38 PM ET
At some point, in the future, if all goes right in Hollywood there will be an official Mass Effect movie. But as we all know, often times all does not go right in Hollywood and the game adaptations we long to see never get made (or, perhaps worse yet, get made very, very poorly).
In the meantime, there is "Red Sand," a Mass Effect movie being made by a group of the game trilogy's fans at the University of Advancing Technology in Arizona. This movie is not only already well into production, it stars the actor who brought us the voice of Commander Shepard in the games themselves.
Interestingly, actor and Shepard-voice-maker Mark Meer will not be playing Commander Shepard in "Red Sand." That's because this movie is set 35 years before Shepard's time. Instead, Meer plays Col. Jon Grissom.
Who is Grissom and what's this film about? The movie's website offers this synopsis:
Serving as a prequel to the MASS EFFECT game series,"Red Sand" is set 35 years before the time of Commander Shepard and tells the story of the discovery of ancient ruins on Mars. Left behind by the mysterious alien race known as the Protheans, the ruins are a treasure trove of advanced technology and the powerful Element Zero, an energy source beyond humanity's wildest dreams. As the Alliance research team led by Dr. Averroes (Ayman Samman) seeks to unlock the secrets of the ruins, a band of marauders living in the deserts of Mars wants the ruins for themselves. Addicted to refined Element Zero in the form of a narcotic nicknamed "Red Sand" which gives them telekinetic "biotic" powers, these desert-dwelling terrorists will stop at nothing to control the ruins and the rich vein of Element Zero at its core. Standing between them and their goal are Colonel Jon Grissom (Mark Meer), Colonel Lily Sandhurst (Amy Searcy), and a team of Alliance soldiers tasked with defending the ruins at all costs. At stake - the future of humanity's exploration of the galaxy, and the set up for the MASS EFFECT storyline loved by millions of gamers worldwide.
The film is expected to be completed later this year. Meanwhile, this week, the "Red Sand" crew released the first trailer for the movie, and guess what — it's looking pretty dang good for fan film. Here, check it out:
WindaBenedetti writes about games for msnbc.com. You can follow her tweets aboutgames and other things here on Twitter or join her in the stream hereon Google+. And for more video game news and reviews be sure to check outthe In-Game Facebook page right here.