Video game publisher Ubisoft recently launched a film and TV production division meant to collaborate with the games team and develop projects in tandem, when appropriate. It’s the modern-day golden goose, creating a franchise that delivers quality on all fronts and in all mediums. Video games tend to not fare so well on the movies side, but perhaps Ubi’s approach of bringing a dedicated internal team to bear on such projects is the right idea.
We’ll find out soon enough, as Variety is reporting that three notable Ubi franchises have already been pegged for development into 3D features: Assassin’s Creed, Splinter Cell and Ghost Recon. From the sound of things, the plan is to have at least one script ready by the end of the year; Ubi has already seen great interest from Hollywood filmmakers. Which is no surprise. Whoever figures out how to crack video games for the big screen — Silent Hill came close, but we’re still not there — stands to make a lot of money.
Ubisoft tried and missed last year when it put Prince of Persia in the hands of Disney. Even with Jordan Mechner, the game’s creator, penning the screenplay, the movie missed the mark. It wasn’t offensive, and it was more successful in some ways than past efforts at capturing the spirit of the game… but not enough. The three properties Ubi has lined up all show a lot of promise as film adaptations. Speaking as a fan of both games and film, I’m daring to get my hopes up yet again.