Relive the fiercest battle of the 90’s with the ‘Console Wars’ movie and book

As we mentioned briefly on our recent Nerdcast, it has been announced that Seth Rogen (of Superbad, Knocked Up, This is the End fame) and his long-time collaborator, Evan Goldberg, will be directing and writing the screenplay for a movie version of Blake Harris’ upcoming book, Console Wars: Sega,
Nintendo, and the Battle That Defined a Generation

Almost ironically (but not really) Sony Pictures is the studio behind the movie, with Scott Rudin (Moneyball, The Social Network) also at the helm.  The story has been described as a “behind-the-scenes business thriller” and here’s decent description, outlining the book (and the movie, no doubt) from Amazon.

cw poster…a mesmerizing, behind-the-scenes business thriller that chronicles how Sega, a small, scrappy gaming company led by an unlikely visionary and a team of rebels, took on the juggernaut Nintendo and revolutionized the video game industry.

In 1990, Nintendo had a virtual monopoly on the video game industry. Sega, on the other hand, was just a faltering arcade company with big aspirations and even bigger personalities. But that would all change with the arrival of Tom Kalinske, a man who knew nothing about videogames and everything about fighting uphill battles. His unconventional tactics, combined with the blood, sweat and bold ideas of his renegade employees, transformed Sega and eventually led to a ruthless David-and-Goliath showdown with rival Nintendo.

The battle was vicious, relentless, and highly profitable, eventually sparking a global corporate war that would be fought on several fronts: from living rooms and schoolyards to boardrooms and Congress. It was a once-in-a-lifetime, no-holds-barred conflict that pitted brother against brother, kid against adult, Sonic against Mario, and the US against Japan.

Based on over two hundred interviews with former Sega and Nintendo employees, Console Wars is the underdog tale of how Kalinske miraculously turned an industry punchline into a market leader. It’s the story of how a humble family man, with an extraordinary imagination and a gift for turning problems into competitive advantages, inspired a team of underdogs to slay a giant and, as a result, birth a $60 billion dollar industry.

Harris is serving as Executive Producer on the movie and is also co-directing a documentary on the same subject, with Rudin, Rogen and Goldberg producing as well. The book is currently available for preorder, set for a May 13th release in the US and a June 19th release in the UK.

There hasn’t been a confirmed date for the movie yet, but it is said to have had some development action as early as 2012 – as this old IGN article explains.

The only question is, is this all too soon? I’m fairly certain there are still some gamers out there who fought hard on the playgrounds battlefields of the 90’s in one of the biggest wars ever: the SEGA vs Nintendo Console Wars.

[Feature image: The Console Wars T-Shirt by Nathan Davis]

Graham Cookson

I'm the European Editor of SEGA Nerds and co-founder of the original SEGA Nerds website with Chris back in 2004 or 2005 (genuinely can't remember which year it was now!). I've been a SEGA fan pretty much all my gaming life - though I am also SEGA Nerds' resident Microsoft fanboy (well, every site needs one) and since SEGA went third party, I guess it's now ok to admit that I like Nintendo and Sony too :0) I'm also the Content Manager of the big data company, Digital Contact Ltd, in the UK:

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