Historically video game adaptations have been a flop both at the box office and entertainment wise but Activision Blizzard is ready to change all of that. The company has just created Activision Blizzard Studios which will work to develop both feature films and television shows based off of the studio’s various properties.
Well, most of them at any rate.
With ‘Warcraft‘ being one of the company’s largest franchises and one they can’t touch thanks to Duncan Jones upcoming film, you would think this might be a little bit of a stretch. However, you have to remember that the company also owns the rights to games such as Call Of Duty, Skylanders, Diablo, Hearthstone, and StarCraft. There is a lot of franchise opportunity there and the studio is betting big that they’ll be able to pull bringing their games out to mass appeal on both the big and small screen.
According to Co-President Nick van Dyk, “We’re not in the film and television business, we’re in the franchise, intellectual property business.” Considering they own some of the biggest video game franchises in history that isn’t a bold statement that is being made out of the blue. The other Co-President hasn’t been announced but they are “an immensely talented industry executive” who will work on the creative development for the company.
According to CEO Bobby Kotick they will, “approach film and television development with the same unwavering commitment to excellence we are known for in game development.”
The first creation they have on their plate is an ongoing animated series titled ‘Skylanders Academy’ which is being run by Eric Rogers (‘Futurama’) with voices by Justin Long (‘Alvin And The Chipmunks’), Ashley Tisdale (‘Phineas And Ferb’), Jonathan Banks (‘Better Call Saul’), and Norm Macdonald (‘Saturday Night Live’).
Of course we all know that the big money will be in the ‘Call of Duty’ franchise which has years of history and plots to mine from and they are saying that it is a “near-term initiative” to develop “a robust cinematic universe based on the Call of Duty franchise. The plan is for both films and potentially a TV series to be created. It wouldn’t surprise me if they either tried to go with a Marvel Cinematic Universe route or have one focusing on the world of ‘Black Ops’ while the other looks into either ‘Advanced Warfare’ or ‘Future Warfare’.
It sounds like the world of cinema is about to be changed once again and if ‘Warcraft’ pulls off a win at the box office it has a chance to really get people excited about video game adaptations.
Are you looking forward to Activision expanding into cinematic entertainment? Which franchise of theirs are you most excited about? Share your thoughts below!