An upcoming documentary
focused on the video game industry crash of 1983 and the subsequent burial of thousands of unsold Atari cartridges will launch exclusively on Xbox
in 2014, Microsoft announced this week.
Canadian film production company Fuel Industries plans to head up an excavation of a New Mexico landfill for the documentary, aiming to uncover a derelict batch of Atari hardware and software that the company crushed and encased in concrete more than 30 years ago. The landfill reportedly
entombs unsold copies of infamous Atari-licensed releases like E.T.
, among other critically-panned games that led to Atari's closure and sale to Commodore International in 1984.
Fuel Entertainment's film will be the first in a series of Xbox-exclusive documentaries launching in 2014 through Microsoft's new media company Lightbox. Microsoft has enlisted the help of producers Simon Chinn (Searching for Sugar Man, Man on Wire
) and Jonathan Chinn (FX's 30 Days
and PBS's American High
) to handle series production. X-Men 2
writer Zak Penn will direct the Atari documentary, which begins shooting in January.