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Markiplier to direct and star in movie adaptation of horror game Iron Lung

The YouTube veteran was the fan-casting pick of the game’s creator

Maddy Myers has run Polygon’s games section since 2020 as deputy editor. She has worked in games journalism since 2007, at Kotaku, The Mary Sue, and the Boston Phoenix.

Mark Edward “Markiplier” Fischbach, veteran YouTuber who first gained fame streaming indie horror games like Amnesia: The Dark Descent and Five Nights at Freddy’s, will be bringing one of those horror games to the silver screen. Iron Lung, a 2022 underwater survival horror game set on a submarine, appeared in a Let’s Play on Markiplier’s channel shortly after its debut. On Friday, Deadline reported that the YouTuber will use “his own script” to adapt, direct, and star in the film version of Iron Lung.

There was an unexpected hint at this news last February, when Iron Lung’s creator David Szymanski posted about an Iron Lung movie on Twitter. His description made the project sound like a dream rather than a reality; Szymanski jokingly referred to his game’s nameless protagonist as “John Iron Lung,” stating that Markiplier would take on that lead role. The tweet also cited Andrew Hulshult as the film’s composer, a piece of news that also turned out to be real. (Szymanski’s announcement that the YouTuber Jacksepticeye would appear in the film as “The Fish” has yet to be confirmed.)

Caroline Kaplan (The Plot Against America, Proof) will co-star in the film, with Will Hyde and Jeff Guerrero joining Markiplier as producers. Markiplier is self-financing the film as well.

The first trailer for Iron Lung, embedded above, begins with an image of the interior of the submarine from the video game. Throughout the trailer, a voiceover plays on the submarine’s radio, describing the craft’s journey to “maximum depth” in its underwater voyage. The shot pans over from the video game version of the sub’s interior to a live-action recreation of the set.

Since the announcement, Szymanski has shared more details about the project on his personal Twitter, such as the fact that the movie is “a separate canon” from the game, and that it will be feature-length.

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