It’s been over six months since we last heard anything on Gamer, the new action thriller from Crank directors Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor. During that time, they’ve shot and released Crank: High Voltage, but apart from a title change , it was called Game), nothing has been heard or seen of the first movie.

Which, obviously, has led to rumours of whiffiness. But the first trailer for the Gerard Butler-starring actioner has just gone up and it looks pretty good.

Basically a modern-day rejig of The Running Man, Butler stars as Kable, a one-man army and Death Row convict forced to participate in a real-world computer game, where he’s ‘controlled’ by a player he’s never met and pitted against outrageous odds. If he survives 30 games, he wins his freedom and returns to his family. Problem is, he’s on 27 games and counting, and the bad guys – personified by Dexter’s Michael C. Hall – aren’t exactly keen that he completes his tour of duty.

Neveldine/Taylor claimed, all those months ago, that there’s more to Gamer than just pure action; the movie is something of a head-trip, taking in several gaming zones, each with a different look, and a rumination on the nature of identity, control and freedom. Whether they’ve nailed those aspects remains to be seen – but it also promises to be a kick-ass action flick and, judging from the trailer, it looks as demented as anything you might expect from The Crankies, with Butler on good, glaring, tough-guy form.

But can he out-Stath The Stath? And, Check the trailer out here.