Anybody who’s anybody nowadays has their own interconnected cinematic universe. Marvel has one. Fox one using Marvel’s best characters. DC has one. Star Wars has one. Hasbro and Ghostbusters are working on them. Even Rob Liefeld is getting his own cinematic universe. If you don’t have a cinematic universe, why the @#$% are you even making movies?
It’s in that landscape that Activision has announced plans to create a cinematic universe like Marvel’s based on their Call of Duty video game franchise. Where Marvel has an eclectic collection of long-established superheroes and villains to draw upon, Call of Duty has dozens of video games about shooting people, but other than that, they’re basically the same thing, so we don’t see how this couldn’t be considered a great idea.
Activision Blizzard Studios Co-Presidents Stacey Sher and Nick van Dyk discussed their plans to make movies and TV shows out of video games (ask Mario Bros how that worked out) in an interview with The Guardian. Said Sher:
We have plotted out many years. We put together this group of writers to talk about where we were going. There’ll be a film that feels more like Black Ops, the story behind the story. The Modern Warfare series looks at what it’s like to fight a war with the eyes of the world on you. And then maybe something that is more of a hybrid, where you are looking at private, covert operations, while a public operation is going on.
And van Dyk, who was reportedly a former Disney exec who had a hand in acquiring Marvel and Lucasfilm and wants to model the ACU after those universes:
It’s going to have the same sort of high-adrenaline, high-energy aesthetic as the game, but it’s not a literal adaptation. It’s a much more broad and inclusive, global in scope … a big, tentpole Marvel-esque movie.
In case you’re worried that Activision might be moving too fast here, don’t worry. Van Dyk plans to start with the company’s existing successful franchises before moving on to “an incredible opportunity to have these hundreds of games that have huge huge followings and tremendous nostalgia,” and Sher astutely notes that good writing and directing will be key to building the universe, saying, “If you just chase the empty blockbuster, and have nothing to say in the genre, forget about it.”
It sounds like they’ve totally thought this all through, and we have the utmost faith in this project’s success.
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