Ubisoft is pushing ahead with their film arm, Ubisoft Motion Pictures, to get the best and brightest writers and actors for their future game-to-film adaptations. These titles include the intensely popular Assassin's Creed, Splinter Cell, and now, Tom Clancy's almost fifteen year old game franchise, Ghost Recon.
Chief executive of the gaming companies' film division, Jean-Julien Baronnet, spoke to the LA Times about their plans moving forward, and how their approach to taking games to film is different.
If you look at past adaptations of games to movies, none were done by an integrated gaming company that put a movie structure inside of itself. We're not here to just license and we're not here to produce big movies ourselves. We are really in the middle of it.
Ubisoft has reached into their own pockets to hire film industry writers to script their adaptations, as well as bringing aboard A-list actors like , attached to star in Splinter Cell, and , set to take point in Assassin's Creed.
Showing that they're absolutely serious about approaching these new ventures with as much firepower as possible, Ubisoft has teamed with production company New Regency, whose Chief Executive Brad Weston also had some words on the collaboration.
Ubisoft did something very intelligent in bringing people from the film industry who speak the same language that we do. We're working in partnership versus [the more standard method of] us doing the work and then turning it in for approval.
Ghost Recon, a series of war-fighting third-person shooters, has thrived through what will soon be thirteen titles, the latest being Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Online. It has been a flagship title for Ubisoft since 2001, and what they hope will also be a wild success on the big screen that appeals to everyone.
On that topic, Baronnet makes assurances to gamers that they're not being left out of the equation, any more than pure film fans who perhaps don't play games.
We don't want to make an average movie. We want to make a movie that will serve the brand and make happy the gamers and also the non-gamers. I think it has never been done before, but we can build this bridge.
Excellent actors, proper writers, and a collaboration that seems all-embracing rather than compartmentalized; that's certainly the way to approach something as sensitive as the game-to-film transition that so many before them have failed at. It remains to be seen, however, if the talk will translate to a product that is appealing to fans and newcomers alike.
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