Video game adaptations into film have always been shaky in terms of what is hoped for, and what eventually comes out.
I mentioned this story a while back, but I was in northern France when Prince of Persia came out. Wanting to impress my friends, I suggested seeing the movie, not really knowing what any of the characters were saying. I knew the Prince of Persia games back to front, so chances are I could scrape away a few plot points and go for a ride.
And it worked! Jake Gyllenhaal ran around with his abdominals flexing this way and that, swinging a sword and being all…well he was French in this instance, but the main point was nothing was lost.
Unfortunately I set the bar too high in terms of what I was expecting, which at this point I can’t really pinpoint as it was in French, but I could tell from the snickering going on in the audience the dialogue wasn’t that well-written (or dubbed, I gathered).
The medium of video games is such that to keep you entertained for 20-40 hours (not at a time, I hope) with jumping from tree to tree, or swinging your weapon at swarms of enemies. Imagining that for hours on end as a movie without interacting on a controller seems…well, dull.
Game developer and publishing house Ubisoft (who funny enough is French) has just secured a deal with Sony Pictures to make a film surrounding the world of the hugely popular game series Assassin’s Creed. While this is cause for celebration and fear, this particular deal’s caused a stir in the ‘biz.
Because Ubisoft’s roped in a whole heap of cash with the series, they’ve dared to ask for more control (‘Fighting the Man’-style). This apparently includes approval over the budget, cast, script and when it’ll be released.
Considering there are two major companies trying to suss out where each can benefit from such a film, it’s a shock to see the video game companies come out chest-thumping with alpha-male glee.
For those who have seen it, Ubisoft has already toyed with the idea of an Assassin’s Creed film. In the leadup to the second game, they filmed a live-action mini-series as a prequel of sorts to the upcoming game (ignore the cheesy voice in the beginning):
While better-looking then most other live-action videos, given a bigger budget and more control, it could be really cool. On the other hand, it could be another Super Mario Bros.
It was rumoured with Prince of Persia that both Disney and Ubisoft had issues with who had more control, both stating it was the other’s fault for the movie’s bad rating, though it still earned more than $300 million (made on $200 million).
If any of the videos made for the game can be taken into consideration, it could turn into something great. Click here for a look at the upcoming Assassin’s Creed: Revelations trailer, coming out next week (pre-order your copy here).
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