The Videogame Movies of 2014 and Beyond
There's no great secret to why Hollywood is interested in adapting successful videogames into movies. When something is successful, Hollywood likes to cash in, and games have been out-earning movies consistently for some years now. In these uncertain economic times Tinseltown likes to play it safe and greenlight projects with an inbuilt audience- hence the recent glut of remakes, reboots and comicbook movies. Videogame movies are just another example of this.
Yet games and movies are very different mediums and adapting them from one to another can be tricky. As a result there has been a number of high profile flops going all the way back to Super Mario Bros and Streetfighter. This hasn't seemed to put them off because the next few years sees an unprecedented number of videogame based movies due to hit a big screen near you. Not only that, but some of them (*gasp*) actually look quite good. So put down your controller and grab some popcorn as we peer into the gaming movies of the near future..... (3D Glasses are optional)
Need For Speed
When you think about it, it's kind of strange it's taken this long for a movie based on an EA franchise to arrive. While on the face of it Need For Speed is quite a strange choice to give the big screen treatment, it could actually prove to be quite smart. It's a very flexible concept to hang a story around- there's no ready built cast to worry about. As long as there's lots of cars, driving really fast that's all that matters. Need For Speed features a very different role for Breaking Bad's Aaron Paul, taking on his first movie lead. With the next Fast and Furious movie delayed 'til next year due to Paul Walker's untimely passing, Need For Speed might help those who need to scratch that particular itch.
ETA: March 2014
Typically, Videogames that are tapped for movie adaptations are those that have proved a big success. Therefore Ninja Theory's 2007 hack-'n'-slasher is an odd choice. Released during the Playstation 3's tricky launch period it's all but forgotten now. This isn't a live-action adaptation though, but a CGI animation that brings back Fringe's Anna Torv as the voice of lead sword-swinger Noriko. To all intents and purposes it looks pretty much identical to the game's cut-scenes, and while they were impressive back then it's not exactly cutting-edge any more. The movie will open in cinemas in "select territories" before releasing for the home market on PSN
ETA: Spring 2014
Publisher's Ubisoft aren't very impressed with the games movies we've had so far. So they decided to do something about it and set up their own production studio. The first product we will see of this initiative is this adaptation of the hugely successful Assassin's Creed series. The film will reportedly keep the game's sci-fi trappings, following Desmond Miles as he uses the Animus to enter the lives of his ancestors. Which historical settings from the games will feature remain to be seen, but the project has a big name attached in the form of Michael Fassbender. The X-Men First Class star is attached as a producer and is also expected to star.
ETA: August 2015
Resident Evil 6
While I'll admit I bailed on the series after the first two movies, Resident Evil is undoubtedly the most successful game based franchise out there. Originally expected this year, the as-yet-untitled sixth film in the series will again feature Milla Jovovich as movie-only character Alice. Jovovich's husband Paul WS Anderson is expected to return on directorial duty, for the film that is being touted as a 'franchise closer'. While this might finish up the existing story don't be surprised if it's not the last we see of Resi on the big screen- Hollywood's never been one to let a cash-cow get away.
Blizzard's MMORPG World Of Warcraft is among the biggest phenomenons gaming has ever seen. So a videogame adaptation has been on the cards for some time with names such as Sam "Evil Dead" Raimi attached at various times. After years of false starts, the cameras are finally rolling with acclaimed cult director Duncan Jones (Source Code, Moon) at the helm. With a rich fantasy world to draw on and a director who can do it justice this could prove to be the one videogame movie we've been waiting for.
And there's more....
Just a few of the other game movies currently in development.
- Splinter Cell (TBC) The second production announced by Ubisoft's movie studio. Tom "Bane" Hardy is attached to star
- Ratchet & Clank (2015) CGI Toon from Sony based on the hit series
- Sly Cooper (2016) Another CGI Toon from Sony based on the other hit series.
- Deus Ex (TBC) Sci-fi adap from the writers and director of cult horror Sinister.
- Tomb Raider (TBC) A new take on Lara's adventures reportedly based on the fantastic 2013 game reboot.
What game movie are you most excited to see? What game would make the best movie? Sound off down below!